Fight Back! supporter
As of July 5 2020 members included Loretta VanPelt.
Teachers strike support
Around 40 people gathered in Dinkytown, off the intersection of 15th Avenue and 4th Street to hold a speak-out in support of striking Minneapolis educators on Saturday, March 19 2022. The action kicked off with a round of chants, as onlookers passed by, some even joining the protest, and cars honked their horns in support, and speakers made their way to the mic.
Students for a Democratic Society at the University of Minnesota member and former Minneapolis Public Schools student, Gillian Rath, said, “being a schoolteacher is one of the most demanding jobs I can think of.”
Ana Vasquez, an educator and the Second Vice-President of the Minneapolis Federation of Teachers Local 59’s teacher chapter, and Loretta VanPelt, a rank-and-file member of MFT and organizer with Twin Cities Coalition for Justice 4 Jamar, both detailed what educators were striking for, showing that it’s not just a fight against cuts in the moment, but a fight against a long ongoing attack on public education and on the working class.
Olivia Crull, a member of SDS and the Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack! made clear to students, “We have to hold the line with [MFT], so that they can win everything that educators and students in this city deserve.” Crull continued, “Now I love the word solidarity, but I want to challenge us all to go beyond that. Students shouldn’t just be in solidarity with workers, we should see their fight as our fight. We should see ourselves as the future working class.”
Closing out the action, David Richard Gilbert-Pederson, an organizer with AFSCME 3800 and Minnesota Workers United, and who is currently on release to MFT 59 to lead up their strike solidarity work, detailed how much the educators he had did for him, and how important it is to stand with them in this moment. Gilbert-Pederson also made the connection of how MFT is leading a fight for the whole working class.
Minneapolis, MN - On May 3 2018, around two dozen people gathered to protest the increased militarization of the University of Minnesota Police Department. The rally, held by Students for a Democratic Society at the University of Minnesota, was part of a broader campaign to disarm the UMPD.
“We think that this is a perfect opportunity for the University to leverage themselves on a progressive course in society” and “nip in the bud any circumstances where police can murder people,” said SDS member Marty Branyon.
Several people spoke, including Loretta VanPelt from the FRSO, Rahsaan Mahadeo from Differences Organized, and Olivia Crull from SDS. Students chanted calling for the disarmament and dissolution of the UMPD.
International Human Rights Day
Andrew Josefchak December 14, 2021 Minneapolis, MN - Despite a 12-inch snowfall, more than 60 people marched in recognition of International Human Rights Day in Midtown Minneapolis, shutting down a major business thoroughfare on December 11.
The Anti-War Committee united with the Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee , the Council for American-Islamic Relations – MN , the Climate Justice Committee , Twin Cities Coalition for Justice 4 Jamar, Women Against Military Madness, and the Students for a Democratic Society at the University of Minnesota to put on the event.
After speaking about how the human rights of Black Americans are regularly violated by the racist, violent, police thugs, Loretta VanPelt of the Twin Cities Coalition for Justice 4 Jamar led the crowd in chanting Wright’s name.
Siobhan Moore of SDS insisted that the U.S. doesn’t have a leg to stand on when it criticizes other nations for their “human rights violations.”
Erin Stene of the AWC drew attention to how Israel, the largest single recipient of U.S. financial aid, an important military ally of the U.S. in the Middle East, and itself a supposed champion of human rights, has recently criminalized six Palestinian civil society groups by designating them as terrorist organizations.
Jaylani Hussein noted that the tornadoes that ripped through a Kentucky factory that same morning, killing at least 70 people, were a direct result of the U.S. war economy – and this environmental devastation overwhelmingly affects people of color.
Black Friday protest
St. Paul, MN - On November 27 2020, the Twin Cities Coalition for Justice 4 Jamar organized a rally and car caravan to protest the mass arrests of November 4. The Black Friday protest started in the parking lot of JJ Hill elementary school, where Philando Castile worked before he was killed by police. During a brief rally, participants decorated their cars, then a caravan of 100 vehicles left for the governor’s mansion, by way of the Grand Avenue.
Governor Tim Walz had mobilized hundreds of police from across the state to "teach a lesson" to protesters on November 4 who were part of a national day of protest called by the National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression. Minneapolis police brutalized supporters, observers and bystanders while state patrol and others spent the six hours arresting at least 646 protesters on Interstate 94.
Arrestees from multiple organizations spoke, including Chaz Neal, from Red Wing, Minnesota; Kaia Hirt of Minnetonka; Shannon Nordby of Native Lives Matter, Mohamed Ibrahim of CAIR-MN, and Loretta VanPelt, Jae Yates and DJ Hooker of Twin Cities Coalition for Justice 4 Jamar.
June 18 at 6:20 PM ·
Frank Chapman is in Minneapolis/St. Paul today to meet with the movement that launched the nationwide rebellion in the wake of the police murder of #GeorgeFloyd.
Lessons from the movement: Community Control of Police
Lessons from the movement: Community Control of Police National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression
Speakers included Gabriel Montero Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, Michael Sampson National Desk National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression and co-JCAC, Loretta VanPelt Twin Cities Coalitionfor Justice for Jamar, Regina Joseph, president of JCAC, Christina Kittle co-founder JCAC, Jennifer Miller Dallas Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, Jade Arter Utah Against Police Brutality.
2018 Womens day rally
About 100 people rallied in Minneapolis, March 8 2018, to mark International Women’s Day. Loretta VanPelt, of Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!, told the crowd, “We in Freedom Road know the enemy is bigger than Trump. And we call out that enemy. It is the capitalist class. We see the oppression and patriarchy that they try to shove down our throats. Their system that says women should work for peanuts, or work for free, and silently accept the abuses that ruin our lives. But we will not be silent! Today, on International Women’s Day, we shout our rage.”
Other speakers included CeCe McDonald, nationally recognized LGBTQ activist; Leila Abdenabi of the Palestinian Youth Movement; Sue Goodstar from Native Lives Matter; Angelique of MIRAc; Natasha Phelps of the MN Women’s March, Olivia Cruz of Students for Democratic Society, and Misty Rowan, of the Anti-War Committee.
Organized by the Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!, the event was endorsed by Twin Cities Coalition for Justice 4 Jamar, Anti-War Committee, Women Against Military Madness, Minnesota Peace Action Coalition, Welfare Rights Committee, Native Lives Matter, Minnesota Immigrant Rights Action Committee, Students for Democratic Society (SDS) at the University of Minnesota, and Women's March MN.
"Minneapolis: Celebrate May Day - International Workers Day 2015"
Sunday 26 April 2015, "Minneapolis: Celebrate May Day - International Workers Day 2015" organized by Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!. Location TBA.
Those indicating attendance on Wherevent included Katherine Elizabeth, Jessica Schwartz, Steph Ross Taylor, Christina Field, Doug Jadzia Sembla, Mary Padilla Cristobal Aldana, Alisha Olson, Kim DeFranco, Jess Sundin, Cassandra Hendricks, Cherrene Horazuk, Julia Russ, Zandra Dee , Loretta VanPelt, Tracy Molm, Hannan Ayoub, Khin Oo, Tracey Plk, Kim Smith, Hoda Isak, Alexandra Vagac, Laura Hoffman, Meredith Aby-Keirstead, Jessie Gavilanes, Amy Selvius, Penelope Mace, Beatriz Hernandez, Marisol Marquez, Laye Kwamina-Barry, Cory Eggert, Lion Ras, Kuntal Chatterjee, Andy Carhart, Sean Orr, Rahul Choudhury Boro, Andrew McNally, Cleveland Savage, Jesus Estrada-Perez, Julio Alberto Martinez, Fern Figueroa, Ryan A. Smith, Joshua Cromarty, Brad Sigal, Tim Nolan, Edward Hahn, Cody Gilbert, Timmy McDonough, Mick Kelly, Jigme Ugen, Manuel Berduc.
4th Precinct protest
In December 2015 police broke up the occupation around the Fourth Precinct police station in North Minneapolis.
- The Fourth Precinct protest is often presented as a standoff between law enforcement and a small segment of millennial blacks in North Minneapolis. There’s something of an unspoken agreement in the mainstream media that it’s the protesters on trial, not the police. With descriptors like ‘chaotic scene,’ and ‘shouting and taunting bystanders,’ protesters are presented as a frightening horde to readers. This misses the humanity and individuality of the people involved. Even more, it misses the cause, a structural inequality that’s on the mind of many across the country.
Protestors included Miski Noor Black Lives Matter Minneapolis organizer, Reverend Dewayne Davis Pastor at All God’s Children MCC, Loretta VanPelt, Collin Robinson (age 15), Kandace Montgomery Black Lives Matter Minneapolis organizer.
In 2016, Marie Dino, Loretta VanPelt, Brad Sigal, Kenneth W. Garnier, Mata Konechne, Mick Kelly, Meredith Allison, and Cherrene Horazuk were Minneapolis supporters of FightBack! News, the newspaper of Freedom Road Socialist Organization/FightBack!