October 25, 2016

Major new progressive coalition

We have written often about the lack of interest or ability of progressive groups to form coalitions with others who are dealing specifically with different issues but generally with progressive ideals and goals. Most recently we have urged the creation of such a coalition to provide effective pressure on a Clinton administration.

So we're were pleasantly stunned to find a leading ecological organization- 350 - endorsing the platform of the Movement for Black Lives. 350 describes itself a "building a global grassroots climate movement that can hold our leaders accountable to the realities of science and the principles of justice." The Movement for Black Lives platform was produced by a national network of more than fifty organizations engaged in the Black Lives Matter efort. Here's how 350 describes its new link with MBL:

350 - Last month, the Movement for Black Lives released a policy platform detailing their vision for real policies and practices in the US and beyond to advance Black liberation. The platform is as detailed as it is broad, and is the product of intensive consultation and research. It is a feat. It is inspiring.

At 350.org, we talked for a long time about what it might look like to endorse this platform. For one thing, the platform includes divestment from fossil fuels, which is right up our alley. And like the rest of the US and the world, 350.org has existed over the last several years in the whirlwind of inspiration, outrage, mourning, and political power shifts catalyzed by the Black Lives Matter movement. 350.org is a global organization, and all over the world, we see racial injustice at the root of social, economic and climate justice fights.

The vision put forth in this platform –of policies that help curb violence against Black communities, invest in Black futures, and build community, economic and political power– are the kinds of policies that make justice feel not only necessary, but imminent.

Many of our staff have taken to the streets and huddled in living rooms planning solidarity actions. We’ve written about all the ways racism is at the core of the climate crisis, and how we can’t tackle one without the other. We’ve incorporated stronger intersectional analysis into our training curriculum, action and campaign plans. And still we debated if endorsing this platform would feel hypocritical or hollow. But in the end, we decided that we can’t stay silent or wait for our own campaigns, plans, and policies to be perfect before we publicly share what we believe. We know that everyone in our network may not agree with all the policies in the platform, but we think it’s an important step for 350.org to show our support for this vision and do our part to drive forward dialogue about what kind of world we want to build together.

So here’s our commitment: We endorse the Movement for Black Lives Platform. We believe in the vision. We celebrate the process and time that went into building it, and we are here for the work to fight for the new world it demands.