Mike Farrell

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Mike Farrell is a Los Angeles based actor/activist.

Cesar Chavez walk

Thousands of people from across Southern California joined the 4th Annual Cesar E. Chavez Walk in East Los Angeles on Saturday, April 6, 2002 --marking the ninth anniversary of the legendary farm worker and civil rights leader's death and the 40th anniversary of the United Farm Workers.

Walkers who assembled Saturday at East Los Angeles College Stadium for the walk included Chavez's widow, Helen, other Chavez family members and UFW President Arturo Rodriguez. Also participating were Hollywood figures including Martin Sheen; Jackie Guerra, Pete Leal, Austin Marquez, Edward James Olmos; Esai Morales; Mike Farrell; Ed Begley, Jr.; Marisol Nichols; Richard Coca, Evelina Fernandez, Mike Gomez, Sal Lopez, Dyana Ortelli, Jose Luis Valuenzuela; and Michele Greene.

Many elected officials also joined the walk, including U.S. Rep. Hilda Solis, state Sen. Richard Alarcon, Sen. Gloria Romero, Sen. Nell Soto, Speaker of the Assembly Herb Wesson, Assemblymembers Marco Firebaugh, Judy Chu and Paul Koretz, and Board of Equalization member John Chang.

After a brief welcome by emcees Sid Garcia (ABC7) and Nancy Agosto (KMEX-TV), participants traveled a five-kilometer route through the neighborhood before returning for free music and entertainment.

Sponsors supporting the 4th Annual Cesar Chavez Walk included ABC7, KMEX, La Opinion, Super Estrella and L.A. County Supervisor Gloria Molina.[1]

Anti Iraq War

October 27, (circa 2007) in Los Angeles, nearly 20,000 people marched through downtown to the federal building for a mass rally and Die-In.

After the march, almost everyone present participated in a mass symbolic Die-In. Ian Thompson of the ANSWER Coalition introduced the Die-In while masses of people lay down. Thundering sound effects of air raids and bombs exploding punctuated the action, followed by a solemn minute of silence for the Iraqis and U.S. soldiers killed in the war. As protesters rose up after the Die-In, all chanted "Stop the war!" Preston Wood of ANSWER and Greg Akili of African Americans Against the War spoke about the cost of war on people in the United States, urging everyone present to become organizers in the anti-war movement. Muna Coobtee of the National Council of Arab Americans spoke about the dire conditions facing Iraqis due to the imperialist occupation.

Other speakers included actors Martin Sheen ("The West Wing"), Mike Farrell ("MASH") and Mark Ruffalo ("Zodiac"). ANSWER initiated the protest, which was organized by the Oct. 27 Stop the War Coalition, a broad array of progressive, anti-war and social justice organizations.[2]

Cesar Chavez National Holiday campaign

In 2009 Mike Farrell an actor was listed as an Endorsor of the Communist Party USA initiated Cesar E. Chavez National Holiday organization[3]

Justice for Reggie Clemons Campaign

July 17, 2009, the Justice for Reggie Clemons Campaign welcomed the resolution of the Missouri State Conference of the NAACP, the nation's leading civil rights organization, in support of the nationwide effort to secure justice for Reggie Clemons. The resolution was passed at the NAACP's 100th Anniversary Conference being held in New York City.

In its resolution the rights group announced that it has launched a clemency campaign on Clemon's behalf and lauded the decision of the Missouri Supreme Court to appoint a special master to look into the case and investigate claims that Reggie was wrongly convicted and sentenced to death. The Court acted in response to a petition for habeas corpus filed by Reggie's attorneys on June 12th.

Jamala Rogers, the coordinator of the Justice for Reggie Clemons Campaign, called the NAACP'S action, "critically important to the struggle for justice in Reggie's case." She added, "we hope and believe that Governor Nixon is paying attention to the numerous and important voices who are urging a fresh look at the very disturbing facts in this case."

In addition to the NAACP, groups including the ACLU, the National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty and high profile individuals including Congressman William Lacy Clay, Danny Glover, Mike Farrell and Bianca Jagger have spoken out on Clemons's behalf.

Reggie was sentenced to death for the 1991 murder of two young women who drowned after plunging from the Chain of the Rocks Bridge into the Mississippi River.

David Lerner/Karmen Ross, Riptide Communications were contacts for the campaign.[4]

Liberty Hill Foundation

As at 2009, Mike Farrell was a member of the Advisory Board of the Liberty Hill Foundation, a Los Angeles based organization seeking to advance movements for social change through a combination of grants, leadership training and alliance-building.[5]

"Free the Cuban 5"

From an April 8,2011 letter.

"Dear President Carter:

We, Actors and Artists United for the Freedom of the Cuban 5, want to extend our deepest gratitude for your recent visit to Cuba, as well as our support for your statements promoting improved relations between our countries.

Your call for the release of Gerardo Hernandez Nordelo, Antonio Guerrero Rodriguez, Fernando Gonzalez Llort, Ramon Labanino Salazar, and Rene Gonzalez Sehwerert, known as the Cuban 5, and your willingness to visit with their family members in Cuba mean a great deal to all involved. We strongly agree that there is no reason to keep these men, who were simply trying to protect their country from terrorism, imprisoned any longer...

Further, we enthusiastically support you in having subsequent discussions with President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and hope you will call for urgent action on their part to make right this unjust situation.

Again, we thank you and look forward to the possibility of improved relations and future visits to Cuba.

With respect,

Ed Asner, Co-Chair
, Danny Glover, Co-Chair, Jackson Browne
, James Cromwell, Mike Farrell, Richard Foos, Elliott Gould, Chrissie Hand
, Francisco Letelier, Esai Morales, Graham Nash
, Bonnie Raitt, Susan Sarandon, Pete Seeger, Martin Sheen
, Betty Sheinbaum, Stanley Sheinbaum, Andy Spahn, Oliver Stone
,Haskell Wexler[6]

60th Anniversary of the Rosenberg Executions

Rosenbergs.jpg
Ed Asner, Mike Farrell, Los Angeles Workers' Center

June 19th, 2013 was the 60th anniversary of the executions of Julius Rosenberg and Ethel Rosenberg, according to Peoples World, "seen by many as a grave injustice in our nation's history".

In 1953, the Rosenbergs were sent to the electric chair at the height of the McCarthy era in an atmosphere of hysterical anti-communism with undertones of anti-Semitism.

Longstanding progressive activist actor Ed Asner and fellow actor and anti-death penalty activist Mike Farrell marked the occasion by co-sponsoring a screening of the 1983 Sidney Lumet film "Daniel" at the Communist Party's Los Angeles Workers' Center. HollywoodProgressive.com, LAProgressive.com, and the Communist Party USA co-presented the event.

"Daniel," starring Timothy Hutton, Mandy Patinkin, and Lindsay Crouse, is a fictionalized account of the Rosenberg case, focusing on the traumatic experiences of the children of persecuted Communist activists. The Rosenbergs were charged with "conspiracy to commit espionage" under the Espionage Act of 1917 (as was Bradley Manning). Prosecutors painted the Rosenbergs as traitors, responsible for providing the Soviet Union with "the secret of the atomic bomb."

Event organizer Rossana Cambron began the evening by reading a letter written by Julius and Ethel's son, Robert Meeropol, for the occasion. In it he described how his parents' case mirrors the current "War on Terror" in that "human rights and civil liberties take a back seat to national security." Meeropol went on to say that the government insists that the terrorist threat "is so dangerous that it justifies massive surveillance, expanding secrecy, indefinite detention, and even torture. The Rosenberg case resonates from the inmates at Guantanamo to Private Bradley Manning to the Oval Office of the White House."

Farrell, spoke about his work as president of Death Penalty Focus, an organization dedicated to ending capital punishment. He noted that the close vote on Proposition 34 (to abolish California's death penalty) last November debunked the conventional wisdom that an overwhelming majority supports capital punishment. The initiative failed to pass, but still garnered 48 percent of the vote. Farrell went on to describe capital punishment as a "political tool" used against black people, hispanic people, and other oppressed groups; it reflects the interests not of the people, but of "a government controlled by corporate interests." He said not only is the death penalty discriminatory in its use and ineffective for deterring crime, but its continued practice is "destroying our nation's moral standing."[7]

California Grayson return to Congress supporters

Saturday, 12 November, 2011, a fundraiser was held for Alan Grayson, at 939 San Vicente Boulevard, Santa Monica.

Advertised attendees were Congressman Alan Grayson & AFL –CIO President Richard Trumka, Ed Asner, Michelle Phillips, John Heard, Elliot Gould, Ed Begley, Jr., Mike Farrell, Joan Smith and Kurtwood Smith, Jon Bauman, Eric Roberts, Earl Katz, Mimi Kennedy, Frances Fisher, Peter Coyote, Sara Nichols. Producers Norman Lear, Jeff Wald and Jordan Sommers, Stephen Nemeth , Naren Shankar and Cheri Shankar, Joel Diamond, Michael Butler, Jan Goodman and Jerry Manpearl, Lili Haydn, Vivek Maddela, Lila Garrett, Nina Merson, Jodie Evans, Teray Stephens, and educator Paul Cummins.[8]

Hollywood Blacklist event

A celebrity-packed event marking the 70th anniversary of the Hollywood Blacklist takes place at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills on Friday, Oct. 27th 2017. Victims or surviving relatives will re-enact the infamous House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC) hearings with stars like Richard Dreyfuss, Rosario Dawson, Mike Farrell, Illeana Douglas, James Cromwell, Andrea Marcovicci, Turner Classic Movies host Ben Mankiewicz, former WGA(W) Pres. Howard Rodman, Hector Villagra, executive director of the ACLU of Southern California, etc. (schedule permitting).

Friday, October 27, 2017, marks 70 years to the day that the first subpoenaed “Hollywood Ten” witness testified in 1947 to HUAC. This led to imprisoning and fining the Hollywood Ten for contempt of Congress and eventually the blacklisting of more than 300 writers, directors, actors, singers, etc., setting the stage for the McCarthy era.

The evening also includes special presentations on video from Lee Grant and Ed Asner and a clip on blacklisted screenwriters from the new French documentary Red in Blue. Surviving Blacklistees such as 100 year-old actor Marsha Hunt and 97 year-old writer Norma Barzman, plus relatives of Blacklist-related figures, including Kirk Douglas’ granddaughter Kelsey and Robert Lees’ granddaughter Tania Verafield appear in person. Five daughters of actor Lionel Stander will jointly read his fiery HUAC testimony.

The Hollywood Blacklist denied work to artists suspected of having “subversive” ties or sympathies. To avoid blacklisting witnesses were asked to “name names” of others. Those who wouldn’t inform to HUAC saw their careers crushed. The Blacklist lasted until about 1960, when Dalton Trumbo received screenwriting credit for Exodus and Spartacus.

Dennis Kaye’s band Swing Inc. will perform songs from Blacklist-related movies like The Way We Were. As free speech comes under attack again, Hollywood remembers Washington’s assault on the First Amendment during the witch-hunt!

“Un-American: A Reenactment of the HUAC Hearing, A 70th Anniversary Commemoration of the Hollywood Blacklist” takes place on Fri, Oct. 27. Doors open at 6:00 pm, and the show starts 7:00 pm at the Writers Guild Theater, 135 S. Doheny Dr., Beverly Hills, CA 90211.

Sponsored by: The WGA Foundation, Hollywood Progressive, LA Progressive.[9]

References

  1. http://www.ufw.org/_board.php?mode=view&b_code=news_press&b_no=702&page=21&field=&key=&n=235 UFW Thousands walk in L.A. to honor Cesar Chavez & 40th anniversary of the union he founded 04/07/2002]
  2. PSL Oct. 27 Protests Throughout the United States
  3. http://www.cesarchavezholiday.org/index.html
  4. http://www.commondreams.org/newswire/2009/07/17/campaign-salutes-naacp-resolutions-calling-justice-reggie-clemons Common Dreams, riday, July 17, 2009 - 3:23pm Justice for Reggie Clemons Campaign Campaign Salutes NAACP on Resolutions Calling for Justice for Reggie Clemons]
  5. Liberty Hill website: Advisory Board
  6. [http://mltoday.com/subject-areas/cuba/letter-from-san-antonio-activists-supporting-the-cuban-5-1231.html, Marxism-Leninism Today, Letter from San Antonio Activists Supporting the Cuban 5 PDF Print E-mail Oct. 2, 2011]
  7. PW, Legendary Hollywood activists mark Rosenberg executions’ 60th anniversary, by: Chris Elliott June 24 2013
  8. LA Progressive, https://www.laprogressive.com/support-alan-grayson/Support Alan Grayson’s Return to Congress: Saturday, 12 November By Posted by Administrator]
  9. PW Stars align to remember dark time in U.S. history October 25, 2017 12:18 PM CDT BY SPECIAL TO PEOPLESWORLD.ORG