Oakland

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CPmdou6i7Jg&w=560&h=315]
A general strike has been declared by the Oakland General Assembly. The original version of this song was the number one hit during the 1946 Oakland General Strike. According to Stan Weir:

By nightfall the strikers had instructed all stores except pharmacies and food markets to shut down. Bars were allowed to stay open, but they could serve only beer and had to put their juke boxes out on the sidewalk to play at full volume and no charge. ‘Pistol Packin’ Mama, Lay That Pistol Down’, the number one hit, echoed off all the buildings. That first 24-hour period of the 54-hour strike had a carnival spirit. A mass of couples danced in the streets. The participants were making history, knew it, and were having fun. By Tuesday morning they had cordoned off the central city and were directing traffic. Anyone could leave, but only those with passports (union cards) could get in.

Can we get Willie Nelson to cover it live in Oakland November 2nd?

Author of the article

is an editor of Viewpoint and author of Mistaken Identity: Anti-Racism and the Struggle Against White Supremacy (Verso, Spring 2018).