Adele M. Stan

Adele M. Stan is a columnist at The American Prospect, and editor of Clarion, the newspaper of Professional Staff Congress, a New York City labor union. The views expressed here are her own.

Recent Articles

Bernie Learns His Lesson -- But Have the Rest of Us?

(Photo: Al Drago/CQ Roll Call via AP)
(Photo: Al Drago/CQ Roll Call via AP) Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders waits to speak to federal contract workers during a rally on Capitol Hill on Wedneday, July 22. “ We want a nation where a young black man or woman can walk down the street without worrying about being falsely arrested, beaten, or killed,” Bernie Sanders told some 8,000 supporters in Dallas on July 19, the day after his contentious encounter with protesters from the Black Lives Matter movement at Netroots Nation. While Sanders, the socialist U.S. senator from Vermont who is running for the Democratic presidential nomination, appeared to have learned his lesson quickly, the same cannot necessarily be said for some of his most ardent followers, or for the progressive movement more broadly, where power rests primarily in the hands of white men. When Sanders announced his candidacy, I welcomed it—and I still do. Standing far to the left of likely nominee Hillary Clinton, Sanders’s presence in the race, coupled with...

Why Netroots Nation Was Exactly the Right Place for a #BlackLivesMatter Protest

(Photo: AP/Ross D. Franklin)
(Photo: AP/Ross D. Franklin) Black Lives Matter and Black Immigration Network activists shout down Martin O'Malley and Bernie Sanders during the presidential candidates' forum at Netroots Nation on Saturday, July 18. W hen protesters from the Black Lives Matter movement disrupted the presidential candidates’ forum at an annual gathering of progressives from both grassroots movements and the professional left, a predictable response was heard from many white liberals and progressives: Why are you picking on us? We’re your allies! If movement needed any more fuel, it was granted as much by the mysterious death, just days before, of Sandra Bland, which occurred while she was in custody of the sheriff of Waller County, Texas. Her arrest seems to have been prompted by her defiance of a state trooper’s order to put out her cigarette after he pulled her car over for Bland’s alleged failure to use her directional signal while changing lanes. The trooper’s dash-cam video shows the officer...

If the Pope Wanted to Help the Poor, He’d Be a Feminist

(Photo: Alfred Borba)
(Photo: Alfredo Borba) Pope Francis in St. Peter's Square B y all accounts, Pope Francis can claim his recent tour of South America as a great success. News reports were largely fawning, and the throngs who greeted him came away feeling that he heard their plight, addressed in his message decrying the ravages of capitalism . Likewise, environmentalists of all (and no) religious convictions are enthralled by the pontiff’s evangelism on the topic of climate change , a development destined to irritate right-wing Catholics in the United States, who take with theological certainty the lies advanced by the mouthpieces of the fossil-fuel industries—those laughable claims that the warming of the earth, and all of the disruption that comes with it, have little or nothing to do with the effects of carbon emissions. But as the pope’s messages on climate and capitalism enchant progressive types, their enthusiasm for the man in white poses a harsh danger to progress for women, and to economic...

Andrew Jackson's Dark Legacy Belongs to All of Us -- Democrat and Republican Alike

(Photo: Wikimedia Commons)
(Photo: Wikimedia Commons) D uring the height of the 2008 presidential campaign, I paid a visit to what was then an annual gathering of the Conservative Caucus, a right-wing group founded by the late Howard Phillips, who also helped found the religious right. Unlike his compatriots among the religious right’s founding fathers, Phillips, a large man with the voice of a radio actor, relished the use of extreme language to characterize his perceived enemies: Gays were “sodomites” and “perverts”; Planned Parenthood was “Murder Incorporated.” He also cozied up in public to neo-militia groups such as Missionaries to the Pre-Born. In a small meeting room at a hotel in Arlington, Virginia, the Conservative Caucus convened for its yearly Constitution Day awards event, a notably low-budget affair with nothing on the menu but hotel-supplied hard candies and pitchers of water—and vitriol, no small measure of it trained on the surging Democratic presidential candidate, Barack Obama. Receiving the...

Removing the Confederate Flag is Easy. Fixing Racism is Hard.

Progressives risk being a bit too smug in the aftermath of the Charleston massacre.

AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt
AP Photo/Rainier Ehrhardt Protesters hold a sign during a rally to take down the Confederate flag at the South Carolina Statehouse, Tuesday, June 23, 2015, in Columbia, South Carolina. W hen the Republican National Committee chose Tampa as the site for the party’s 2012 national convention, it seemed quite fitting—Florida being a red state and all, and one in which evangelical fervor mixed freely with the brand of Tea Party vindictiveness epitomized by Governor Rick Scott. As I traveled to the city limits, destined for a motel reserved for any C-list, left-wing journalists covering the confab, the taxi I occupied exited the highway on a ramp dominated by perhaps the largest thing of its kind I had ever seen. Hoisted on a 139-foot pole, this Confederate battle flag measures 30 feet high and 60 feet long. That’s a lot of cloth, and the day I viewed it, it whipped violently against the winds stirred up by Hurricane Isaac, who mercifully defied predictions by remaining offshore. I nearly...

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