Van Jones: “They’re Not Acting This Way Because We Suck”

Four of the movement's biggest thinkers plot the way forward after a trying political year.

By Naima Ramos-Chapman Sep 30, 2010

We’re once again in the full swing of election season, and this one feels a lot different than 2008, coming at the end of a difficult year full of remarkably divisive politics. But if one took away anything from the closing plenary at Facing Race in Chicago this year, it was that the hope of 2008 remains. 

The conference, organized by our publisher the Applied Research Center, closed last weekend by bringing together four progressive heavyweights: Van Jones from the Center for American Progress, Voto Latino’s Maria Teresa Kumar, anti-racist activist and author Tim Wise and Rinku Sen, the executive director of Applied Research Center and publisher of ColorLines. Check out video highlights of the discussion above, then share the video with everyone you know! 

As Van Jones reminded the conference, today’s backlash is the expected response to yesterday’s victories. "They’re not acting this way because we suck," Jones declared. Indeed, as all the panelists concluded, the movement is building steam like never before. You can get watch the full session at

This post has been updated since original publication.