Steve Miller

CORE, COFO, MFDP, Deacons for Defense, 1964-65, Mississippi, Louisiana
Current Residence: Oakland, CA

I worked in Gulfport in the Summer of 1964. Then I worked with CORE in Lousiana from January 1965 through March and June through August that same year. I was based in Clinton, Baton Rouge and Monroe and helped organizing the early movement in Bogalusa.

These months in the South started me on a path of fighting the power structure everywhere I have lived since. I am under no illusions about how difficult it is to reform such institutions, but, if you had asked me, I would have said at least we really won the right to vote. Which of course is subverted in myriad ways.

Yet today we again see Voter Suppression as a banner to weaken all our peoples. They are far more sophisticated today and operate North as well as South. In Michigan, the state can impose Emergency Managers, with total financial powers over communities. With that, you have lost the right to vote. Financial managers have been imposed on Oakland Public Schools, where I taught for 25 years, and San Francisco City College.

Every generation moves the wave further up the beach. This time around the old slogan means even more: it's either ALL of us, or it's none of us. There is no other way to win.


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