Tom Hayden, an author, activist and former California lawmaker, was one of the organizers of the anti-war protests at the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago. Now 76, and recovering from a stroke he suffered last year, he is supporting the Hillary Clinton campaign.
Although there were more than two dozen protesters arrested last night, he says the conventions so far have not turned into riots like 1968. And he believes that is good for Clinton's candidacy, because chaos would play into Donald Trump's call for law and order.
Hayden discusses those topics and more with Here & Now's Robin Young.
Interview Highlights: Tom Hayden
On supporting Hillary Clinton
"Bernie and I only have one thing in common you need to know, we're both politicians so we make decisions based on what's possible. And my decision was that she was going to get all the African-American and Latino votes and the women's votes and organized labor, more or less, so why would I turn my back on my friends of a lifetime? You know, I've really been trying to work towards a goal that seems to be getting realized and that's a serious united front against Trump. And I must say, I'm not one of the people who has a pathological issue about Hillary Clinton. I like Hillary Clinton."
On the economic role of free trade agreements
"The fact is we've lost these hundreds of thousands of jobs, as a direct result of these free trade agreements. The backup position was always, ‘We'll retrain the losers.’ That has proved to politically problematic for the Democratic Party and a total disaster to hundreds of thousands of people in the world I come from.
The whole process is completely secret, and that's been a pretty hot issue with the CIA and drones and many issues, secret money campaign finance. I would recommend people take up transparency as a rejection of secrecy. That's a starting point… And then secondly, pass the infrastructure bill putting hundreds of thousands of people to work which I think Bernie and Hillary both agree on."
On comparing today’s activism to that of the 1960s
"This week you’ve had some disorder but what you've noticed, the will to demonstrate and speak truth to power with illegal civil disobedience, has dissipated, because people know that plays into Trump's hands. One other thing that very few people in progressive circles talk about is the inevitable rise of a really, very moving and inspirational feminism in the person of the first female president."
This segment aired on July 28, 2016.
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