Students for Leftist Action is the largest political student group at Lawrence. The organization is devoted to issues concerning social justice, progressive economics and democracy, non-violence, the protection of civil liberties, and freedom and equality for all, with interests from international law to local farming practices. Students for Leftist Action organizes a number of activities on campus to engage the greater Lawrence community. Events in the last year have included speakers such as John Peck from the Family Farm Defenders, Kathy Groat from the Fair Housing Center of NE Wisconsin, and longtime civil rights activist Joyce Ellwanger.
SLA often sends representatives to conferences such as those of the Fox Valley Peace Coalition, Campus Anti-War Network, and Wisconsin Network for Peace and Justice.
SLA sent two groups to Washington DC last year, once in October to protest the occupation of Iraq and once in April to demand reproductive freedom.
One of the most notable accomplishments of SLA during the last year was their virtual overnight organization of a protest against President Bush’s visit to the Appleton.
This effort mobilized over one tenth of the student population (130 students) actively voice their opinions of disapproval over the current administration’s harmful policies. This exemplifies one of SLA’s best attributes, the ability to organize and unite progressive political groups on campus towards a common goal.
This is demonstrated by multi-group letter writing campaigns organized by SLA, the large number of events co-sponsored by SLA and other progressive organizations, and the large amount of overlap in membership SLA has with other progressive student organizations.
The organization meets casually once a week to discuss group and personal projects, both of which are encouraged. SLA also manages a semi- autonomous newspaper, the One Minute Left, which is the only progressive newspaper at Lawrence. The One Minute Left accepts articles, art, or poetry left of center for print regardless of association with SLA.