Former Communist Angela Davis backs Biden because he can be ‘effectively pressured’

by WorldTribune Staff, July 14, 2020

Angela Davis, a well-known Marxist and former Communist Party member who won the Soviet Union’s Lenin Peace Prize, said she is supporting Democrat Joe Biden because it will be easy for leftists to manipulate him.

In a social media post on Monday, Davis said it is critical to get behind Biden, who she said is the candidate “who can be most effectively pressured” by the Left.

Angela Davis: ‘The election will ask us not so much to vote for the best candidate, but to vote for or against ourselves.’ / YouTube

“I don’t see this election as being about choosing a candidate who will be able to lead us in the right direction,” said Davis. “It will be about choosing a candidate who can be most effectively pressured into allowing more space for the evolving anti-racist movement.”

The post was was excerpted from a Russia Today interview last month. Russia Today, or RT, is funded by the Russian government.

Biden’s past role in championing legislation which led to the mass incarceration of black men is problematic, Davis said, but but added that “Biden is far more likely to take mass demands seriously” than President Donald Trump.

“Far more likely than the current occupant of the White House, so that this coming November, the election will ask us not so much to vote for the best candidate, but to vote for or against ourselves,” Davis said. “And to vote for ourselves I think means that we will have to campaign for and vote for Biden.”

Davis, a fervent supporter of the infamous leftist cult leader and mass murderer Jim Jones, was inducted into the National Women’s Hall of Fame last year.

Related: National Women’s Hall of Fame inducts celebrities who were devotees of Jim Jones, April 11, 2019

British journalist Mehdi Hasan noted that prominent leftists are backing Biden, including author Noam Chomsky, Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and asked, “Are they all ‘liberal sellouts?’ Are they Establishment Stooges? Seriously?”

Angela Davis poster from the early 1970s, before she was granted tenure. / YouTube image

Meanwhile, critics on the right asked why a far-left figure’s support for Biden on RT should be viewed as an electoral plus.

“It looks like Angela Davis, a known Marxist, is on Russian propaganda news channel RT telling Americans to vote for Joe Biden even if they think he is a bad choice because he can be manipulated,” tweeted media critic Stephen L. Miller. “This seems pretty damn suspicious to me. Who agrees?”

Wikipedia notes of Davis:

Born to an African American family in Birmingham, Alabama, Davis studied French at Brandeis University and philosophy at the University of Frankfurt in West Germany. Studying under the philosopher Herbert Marcuse, a prominent figure in the Frankfurt School, Davis became increasingly engaged in far-left politics. Returning to the United States, she studied at the University of California, San Diego before moving to East Germany, where she completed a doctorate at the Humboldt University of Berlin. After returning to the United States, she joined the Communist Party and became involved in numerous causes, including the second-wave feminist movement, the Black Panther Party, and the campaign against the Vietnam War. In 1969 she was hired as an acting assistant professor of philosophy at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). UCLA’s governing Board of Regents soon fired her due to her Communist Party membership; after a court ruled this illegal, the university fired her again, this time for her use of inflammatory language.

In 1970, firearms registered to Davis were used in an armed takeover of a courtroom in Marin County, California, in which four people were killed. Prosecuted for three capital felonies, including conspiracy to murder, and held in jail for over a year, she was ultimately acquitted of all charges in 1972. She visited Eastern Bloc countries in the 1970s and during the 1980s was twice the Communist Party’s candidate for Vice President; at this time, she also held the position of professor of ethnic studies at San Francisco State University. Much of her work focused on the abolition of prisons and in 1997 she co-founded Critical Resistance, an organization working to abolish the prison–industrial complex. In 1991, amid the dissolution of the Soviet Union, she helped start the CCDS, a platform initially operating inside the CPUSA seeking to reorient the party’s ideology away from orthodox communism. When the majority of party members voted against CCDS proposals, along with CCDS colleagues, she left the CPUSA. Also in 1991, she joined the Feminist Studies department at the University of California, Santa Cruz, where she became department director before retiring in 2008. Since then she has continued to write and remained active in movements such as Occupy and the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign.

Praised by many on the left in the U.S. and internationally, Davis has received various awards, including the Soviet Union’s Lenin Peace Prize.

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