• Connecticut Democratic Socialists Start Petition And Campaign Demanding Free Public Transit

    December 1, 2023

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    The Connecticut Democratic Socialists of America (CT DSA) started passing out flyers at transit stations yesterday in support of its "Transit Riders Unite!" campaign.

    The Socialists argue that public transit is a both an "economic and climate justice issue" so the group is urging Governor Ned Lamont to make public transit free and available to all.

    They are calling on comrades to forward a letter to Lamont that reads, in part:

    We demand that Governor Lamont and our state legislators take immediate action to improve service and reimplement the popular fare-free program for not only buses, but for trains and all public transit in the state.

    CTtransit has claimed that free bus fares for one year would cost only between 40 and 45 million dollars. This is a fraction of the state’s 50 billion dollar budget, but spent wisely it can impact millions of Connecticut residents. Transit riders are the working class, the poor, the unhoused, and others who are denied access to quality transportation by the unequal distribution of wealth under capitalism.

    CT DSA Transit Riders for Free Fares CT Campaign

    CT DSA thinks that free fares will help the economic conditions of current transit riders, encourage more people to use public transportation and, at the same time, will address climate change.

    The Transit Riders campaign is being done in conjunction with DSA members across the country through the DSA's Ecosocialism group.

    The Ecosocialism Group has identified ways for local DSA chapters to organize around transit issues in order to "build for power" including:

    • Working with unions to expand transit systems (e.g., adding bus lanes, increasing green areas near bus stops, electrifying the fleet) and to expand transit operations (e.g., hiring more union operators, protecting union jobs, organizing new workers into unions);
    • Creating conditions for expanded high-usage transit options, walking and biking (think high rises and 15-minute cities);
    • Using wealth taxes and fossil fuel taxes to create funding; and
    • Issuing rebates for eBikes and electric vehicles and allowing "car swaps" for transit passes.

    One of the key underlying requirements is ending single-family zoning.

    The Ecosocialists want local chapters, like CT DSA, to use this guidance to build a large working-class base around the "shared vision" of ecocosocialism so they can better "tackle the global nature of capitalism-driven climate change."

    To the Socialists the fight against climate change is a flight against capitalism.

    But to many others, the fight against climate change is a fight against a false narrative built on unsettled science because, as it turns out, there is no climate change emergency.

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    Amy Williams

    Can our society truly get any dumber?

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