An Aug. 25 rally in Daley Plaza commemorated the violence that markedand the political activism that rose out ofthe 1968 Chicago Democratic Convention.
The rally was followed by a march that winded its way around downtown locations integral to the Convention.
In opening remarks, Andy Thayer of the Chicago Committee Against War & Racism as well as Gay Liberation Network called the episode "a horrible chapter in our city's history ... but it is an important event to remember and indeed celebrate."
Thayer explained that the Convention served as a spark for a multitude for activist work as the rest of the '60s and the early '70s unfolded.
Frank Chapman, field organizer and educational director for Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression discussed the need for an elected police accountability board, adding, "We're not in the same place as 1968; we're in a worse place."
Historian and activist Barbara Ransby discussed the need for Americans to "remember and resist," adding, "We have to keep in mind the big picture ... The biggest lesson in history.. is that we always have been fighting."
A number of speakers discussed various issues central to progressives: Activists Kathy Kelly and Vincent Emanuele discussed U.S. military policy; sociologist and activist Sauer Owaida discussed Palestinian rights; artist and activist Robert Ferreyra discussed violence in Mexico; and Natasha Erskine discussed issues with Chicago Public Schools.
Ransby urged audience members not to forget issues pertaining to the LGBT community, adding, "We can't throw anybody under the bus."