Building Bridges Radio: Your Community & Labor Report

Produced and Hosted by Mimi Rosenberg & Ken Nash over WBAI,99.5FM in the NYC Metro Area


WORKERS OF THE WORLD TUNE IN! Introducing "Building Bridges: Your Community & Labor Report"

Our beat is the labor front, broadly defined, both geographically and conceptually. We examine the world of work and workers on the job as well as where they live. We examine the issues that affect their everyday lives, with a particular sensitivity towards human rights abuses, environmental concerns and the U.S. drive for global domination. We record their global struggles and provide analysis of their efforts to empower themselves and transform society to provide greater democratic, human, social, political and economic rights. Each program consists of feature stories, generally interviews, within a historical context, often accompanied by sound from demonstrations, rallies or conferences, and complemented and enhanced by poetry and instrumental or vocal -- people's culture.

Over the years Building Bridges has produced a weekly one hour program, Mondays from 7-8 PM EST, covering local, national and international labor and community issues over radio WBAI-Pacifica 99.5 FM in New York. We also produce half hour version, Building Bridges National, which is distribtued to over 40 broadcast and internet radio stations.

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In Struggle Mimi Rosenberg & Ken Nash

Welcome to New York, Oscar López Rivera - 28:53  

Welcome to New York, Oscar! / ¡Bienvenido a Nueva York, Oscar!

Puerto Rican independence activist Oscar López Rivera, recently released from prison after 35 years, much of which was spent in solitary confinement was cheered as the “Mandela of Puerto Rico” before a packed house at Hostos College, and we’ll bring you highlights of the tribute.  Rivera, didn’t miss a beat after his decades behind the walls as a political prisoner, but rather seemed buoyed by his experience and certainly the ebullience of the crowd and immediately sounded the drum beat of resistance to the Puerto
Rico Oversight, Management and Economic Stability Act, PROMESA and the Act’s imposed junta.

He spoke in pained tones of the austerity budget that burdens the populace and denounced the wealthy elite turning Puerto Rico into their playground. He proclaimed loudly and proudly his ongoing resistance against the colonization of Puerto Rico.  Before his numerous supporters he stood, an undaunted freedom fighter intent to support the Puerto Rican people in struggle against the most pronounced manifestations of colonial exploitation and for independence. 

The night was filled with poems such as by acclaimed poet Martin Espada, folkloric music and dance performances which filled the auditorium with love for Oscar López Rivera and imbued all in attendance with the spirit of liberation and self-determination. 

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Beyond Resistance Summit with Bernie Sanders and National Nurses United - 27:48  

Beyond Resistance: A People’s Movement for a Just World

Deborah Burger, Co-President of America's RN Union: National Nurses United, co-convener of the Beyond Resistance Summit

Sen. Bernie Sanders

At a time of tremendous turmoil and progressive opportunity, thousands gathered to participate in a historic convening committed to social, racial and economic justice. Activists came together committed to a different kind of agenda: a People’s Agenda that can enhance and expand issue campaigns and hold all elected officials accountable to popular demands for justice, equality and freedom.  You’ll hear a report back from the Summit, which was envisioned as deepening the relationship between participating organizations rooted in principled anti-corporate politics,
development of community leaders, direct action, and strategic organizing to build power and we’ll hear the Summit’s keynoter Sen. Bernie Sanders.

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Trash Talking Trump Dumps it on Planet - 28:25  

Trash Talking Trump Dumps it on Planet

Sean Sweeney, director and founder of the Murphy Institute’s
International Program on Labor, Climate, and the Environment

Energy is a core issue for the world and Trump’s response is more fracking, more gas and coal export terminals, and more projects like Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) as he dumps the Paris accord on climate change.  Trump is unprepared to accept the science of climate change, and unwilling to join with the effort being made across the globe through the Paris climate accord.  Trump is digging a ditch, and the only difference between a ditch and a grave is that one is normally a little deeper than the other.  As Trump seeks to bury climate justice policies we’ll talk about what are the policies we need to push for and actions to turn up the
pressure to Save The Planet, and create green jobs.  Don’t Dump on the Environment,

Dump the Trump!

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Rev. Barber Rekindling a Social Justice Movement - 28:57  

"When Silence is Not an Option" - A Message to the Nation from Rev. William J. Barber, II on Rekindling a Moral Vision for Justice, Movement Buildig and Social Change
The Rev. William J. Barber II, president of the North Carolina NAACP, architect of the Moral Monday protest movement, and Repairers of the Breach, his most recent  books include “Forward Together: A Moral Message for the Nation” and “The Third Reconstruction: Moral Mondays, Fusion Politics and the Rise of a New Justice Movement.”

"Your ancient ruins shall be rebuilt; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; you shall be called the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to live in."  — Isaiah 58:12

William Barber, one of the nations’ leading theologians advocates
tirelessly for the rights of the poor, the imprisoned, the disenfranchised and the working class, obliterating the social, cultural, religious and political barriers in society.  Barber’s Forward Together Moral Movement gained national acclaim with its Moral Monday protests at the North Carolina General Assembly in 2013. These weekly actions drew tens of thousands of North Carolinians and other moral witnesses to the state legislature. More than 1,050 peaceful protesters were arrested, handcuffed and jailed, bringing attention to the actions of the legislature.

Barber’s work is about building a progressive agenda rooted in a
moral framework to counter the ultra-conservative constructs that try to dominate the public square. He helps frame public policies which are not constrained or confined by the narrow tenets of neo-conservatism.  He brings together people from different faith traditions, with people  without a spiritual practice but who share the moral principles at the heart to repair the breaches caused by centuries old systems of racial and gender inequality

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Whose Streets: The History and Future of Labor Activism - 27:52  

Whose Streets: The History and Future of Labor Activism

Sarah Jaffe, an independent journalist covering labor, economic justice, social movements, politics, gender, and pop culture. She is the co-host, with Michelle Chen, of Dissent magazine’s Belabored podcast, as well as an editorial board member at Dissent and a columnist at New Labor Forum. Necessary Trouble: Americans in Revolt is her first book.  She was one of the first reporters to cover Occupy Wall Street and the Fight for $15

Mark Brenner, Director of Labor Notes, a media and organizing project that has been the voice of union activists who want to put the movement back in the labor movement since 1979.  Labor Notes also works with local unions and community
groups to organize Troublemakers Schools, bringing labor
activists together for a day of workshops on grassroots unionism and skills that officers and rank and filers need.

Sarah Jaffe  covers the class war one battle at a time.  She has criss-
crossed the country, asking people what they were angry about, and
what they were doing to take power back.  She penetrates the heart
of these movements, explaining what has made ordinary Americans
become activists. She attended a people's assembly in a church
gymnasium in Ferguson, Missouri; walked a picket line at an Atlanta Burger King; rode a bus from New York to Ohio with student organizers; and went door-to-door in Queens days after Hurricane Sandy.  From the successful fight for a 15 minimum wage in Seattle and New York to the halting of Shell's Arctic drilling program, Americans are discovering the effectiveness of making good, necessary trouble. Sarah Jaffe captures the essence of the class struggle, tells the stories of the movers and shakers in labor and community activities to empower the people towards building a just, egalitarian,  peaceful society. 

Mark Brenner knows that we don’t need a crystal ball to figure out
what a Trump presidency has in store for labor:  national “right-to-work” legislation, outsourcing and privatizing more public services, large-scale deportations, a ban on prevailing-wage laws and this is just the tip of the iceberg.   But that’s precisely when Labor Notes kicks into gear insisting, “after we mourn, we need to organize”. Mark will talk about how under Trump, labor must abandon its insider approach and concentrate on the power of the rank and file and where that’s happening.  

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