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David McReynolds

David McReynolds was born on October 25, 1929 in Los Angeles to Charles and Elizabeth McReynolds. In 1951 he joined the Socialist Party of America (SPA) and in 1953 he graduated from UCLA with a degree in Political Science. Between 1957 and 1960, he was on the editorial board of the Leftist magazine, Liberation. He was a staunch pacifist and draft resister, and in 1960 joined the War Resisters League (WRL), which he would remain a member until his retirement in 1999 (he remains active within the nonviolence movement and regularly participates in WRL activities).

After years of internal problems, the SPA suffered a three-way split in 1973. The SPA was renamed the Social Democrats USA by the right-wing leadership (neo-conservatives). Michael Harrington and his followers would split off and found the Democratic Socialists of America with the purpose of "realignment" - the aim of working within the Democratic Party and pulling it to the Left (pretty much the Trotskyist idea of "entrism"). The left-wing of the SPA, or the Debs Caucus, including McReynolds, reconstituted the spirit of the SPA and Eugene V. Debs into the Socialist Party U.S.A. (SPUSA) that exists today.

In his political career, McReynolds ran for Congress (California) twice and for President twice. In 1958 he ran as a write-in SPA candidate and than in 1968 as a Peace And Freedom Party candidate for Congress. In 1980 he would run for President as the SPUSA candidate receiving over 6,000 votes, and also becoming the first openly gay man to run for President in U.S. history. Upon the request of fellow Socialists, McReynolds would run again for President as the SPUSA candidate in 2000 and receive approximately 8,000 votes.

Today, McReynolds lives in New York City and continues to be active in the Socialist and pacifist movements through the combination of Marxian politics and Gandhian non-violence.

/ Biographical Writings /

    1994 - "Leaders From The 60's: A Biographical Sourcebook Of American Activism - David McReynolds" - Book by Larry Gara: Greenwood Press.

    1999, March-April - [[1] (http://www.michigansocialist.net/mcreynolds/texts/about/1999_03-04_nva) | "David McReynolds: Socialist Peacemaker"]] - Article by Paul Buhle: Nonviolent Activist.

    1999, May 01 - "Annual Dinner And Peace Award Ceremony: A Celebration Of David McReynolds" - Pamphlet: War Resisters League.

    2000, April 17 - [[2] (http://www.michigansocialist.net/mcreynolds/texts/about/2000_04_27_itt) | "David vs. Goliath" - Article by Kari Lydersen: In These Times.



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