This article was originally published in Partisan issue no. 23, printed April 2007.
On June 23, 1967, as President Johnson defended his war in Vietnam to a select audience inside the Century City auditorium in Los Angeles, a massive crowd gathered to tell him what Californians thought of his war. As the demonstrators peaceably assembled, a small group of activists guided some of them to a deputy registrar of voters, and the first Californians registered as members of the Peace and Freedom Party. A little later in the day many of the new registrants were beaten with clubs in the police riot as the demonstration was dispersed, but the Peace and Freedom Party went on to achieve ballot status in California in January 1968, and in many other states later that year.
The Peace and Freedom Party celebrates June 23 as its birthday. In the next issue of the Partisan we will honor our 40th anniversary, and tell about some of the events that will be held to celebrate it between June 2007 and January 2008.