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Vito Marcantonio commemoration in Picerno, Italy 2019

Picerno’s Commemoration of Vito Marcantonio

We are proud to announce that the hometown of Marcantonio’s family, Picerno, Italy is commemorating Vito Marcantonio with a three-day festival beginning on April 9th, 2019.

VMF founding member, Stephen Siciliano, a journalist who hosts Marcantoniana, published a story just over a year ago covering the Street Naming Ceremony at Marcantonio’s Lucky Corner on East 116th Street and Lexington Avenue in the East Harlem section of Manhattan. Saverio Romeo, a Picerno native currently residing in London, read the story and got in contact with us to inform the VMF of their intention to do an extended version of the VMF’s street naming.

Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner street naming ceremony 2017
Frank Marcantonio Jr, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, Speaker of the City Councily Melissa Mark-Viverito, LuLu LoLo Pascale, Gloria Quiñones, Roberto Ragone; Back row: Christopher Bell, Gerald Meyer

The Municipality of Picerno has had the idea of an event on Vito Marcantonio for a long time. Matera, a site of great historical significance, has received from the United Nation the distinction of Capital of Culture. This has helped provide the financial opportunity for developing a commemorative Marcantonio event within a moment of great visibility for the entire region of Basilicata, which is located in Southern Italy, is an explosion of stories, characters, and ideas all coming from its towns and villages.. We all hope the event will be just the beginning of a number of activities celebrating the legacy of Vito Marcantonio, a great defender of human rights.

Various personalities from Avigliano, the hometown of Leonard Covello, the incomparable educational philosopher who dedicated his life to Italian immigrant children, will attend the event in the hope of creating a connection between the two towns based on the Marcantonio-Covello mentorship that evolved into a partnership.

In addition, the event organizers have sponsored two VMF members to attend the Festival in Picerno! The VMF has elected Roberto Ragone and Gary Bono as our ambassadors for this enriching journey that will help promote.

We look forward to hearing a report back from Roberto Ragone and Gary Bono who will share their experiences with Picerno and with those who attend to find ways to continue this valuable relationship.

VMF events December 1st

You are invited to join The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) continues with the latest installment of Oliver Stone’s multi-part documentary:

The Untold History of the United States: Chapter 5: The 50s – Eisenhower, the Bomb & The Third World

WHAT: Screening of The Untold History of  the United States. Chaired by Gerald Meyer, VMF co-chair of the Vito Marcantonio Forum, the film will be followed by an open discussion.
WHEN: Saturday, December 1st, 2018 from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
WHERE: Community Room at the Mulberry Street Public Library:
10 Jersey St. (btw. Lafayette and Mulberry Sts.) New York, NY 10012
PLEASE NOTE: Chapter 6 screening will be on January 5, 2019
Light Refreshments / Free Admission 

The Untold History of the United States: Chapter 5: The 50s - Eisenhower, the Bomb & The Third World

Martyrs of McCarthyism: Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, 1953.

From 2018 to 2019, the Vito Marcantonio Forum showed the first three of Stone’s ten, one-hour long, episodes that comprise his masterful documentary, “The Untold History of the United States,” each of which was followed by an Open Discussion. These events attracted large, engaged audiences. This series will resume with the screening of “The 50’s – Eisenhower, the Bomb & The Third World.”

Almost eerily, Stone’s interpretation of this period of U. S. history mirrors the positions Vito Marcantonio presented from the floor of the House of Representatives, on radio, in Madison Square Garden/Yankee Stadium, and at countless street-corner rallies throughout New York City.

The screening on Dec. 1st 2018, will be followed by “JFK to the Brink,” on Jan, 5th 2019. All parts of this series take place on the first Saturdays of the month in the Community Room of the MSPL, 2:00PM-4:00PM; all are free and serve light refreshments.

We encourage you to go on-line and purchase “The Untold History of the U.S.,” an extraordinary volume, authored by Stone and Peter Kusnick, that accompanies the documentary.

PS: There is interest in forming a four-session reading circle for Leonard Covello’s, The Heart Is the Teacher. If you are interested, please send an email to GeraldJMeyer@aol.com, who will facilitate this endeavor. Please include which evening(s), from Monday to Thursday, you are available.

untold history of the united statesAbout the film: Documentary by Oliver Stone. E.5: Eisenhower and the CIA played a great part in the shaping of the world in the 1950’s; the development of the Cold war and the nerve-wrecking battle against communism, driven on by the U.S. Government hysteria’s reaction to the Red Scare spearheaded by McCarthyism leads to the incarceration, black listing, and execution of those who are a perceived threat.
About Oliver Stone: This prolific and ingenious screenwriter and director has authored numerous award-winning feature  films, including SalvadorThe Fourth of JulyJFK — that have reached millions of viewers with dramatic depictions of historic events that challenge conventional interpretations of critical events of our time. Stone’s official website is oliverstone.com and his official Twitter handle is: @TheOliverStone

 

The Untold History of the United States: Chapter 4: The Cold War 1945-1950

You are invited to join The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) continues with the latest installment  of Oliver Stone’s multi-part documentary,

The Untold History of the United States: Chapter 4: The Cold War.

WHAT: Screening of The Untold History of  the United States. Chaired by Gerald Meyer, VMF co-chair of the Vito Marcantonio Forum, the film will be followed by an open discussion.
Introductions by Adam Meyer; facilitation of Open Discussion, by Gerald Meyer; dramatization of Vito Marcantonio’s speech in Congress on “The Marshall Plan and Italy,” by Roberto Ragone.
WHEN: Saturday, November 3rd, 2018 from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM
WHERE: Community Room at the Mulberry Street Public Library:
10 Jersey St. (btw Lafayette and Mulberry Sts.) New York, NY 10012
PLEASE NOTE: Chapter 5 screening will be on December 1, 2018
Light Refreshments / Free Admission 

cold war eraFrom February to May, the Vito Marcantonio Forum showed the first three of Stone’s ten, one-hour long, episodes that comprise his masterful documentary, “The Untold History of the United States,” each of which was followed by an Open Discussion. These events attracted large, engaged audiences. This series will resume with the screening of “The Cold War,” a period which saw U.S. foreign policy make a 180-degree turn from cooperation with the Soviet Union to hostility towards its recent ally. At home, the federal government and much of civil society turned on the Left, which was largely extirpated through ruthless persecution.

Stone’s interpretation of this period proposes that the United States, in an alliance with Great Britain, was largely responsible for the hostilities that ensued. He also shows that the accompanying havoc at home wrecked the New Deal coalition. Whatever one’s opinion of his point of view, Stone’s cinematography ranks among the best. Almost eerily, Stone’s interpretation of this period of U. S. history mirrors the positions Vito Marcantonio presented from the floor of the House of Representatives, on radio, in Madison Square Garden/Yankee Stadium, and at countless street-corner rallies throughout New York City.

The screening of “The Cold War,” on Nov. 3 will be followed by–“The ’50s: Eisenhower, the H-Bomb, and the Third World,” on Dec. 1; and “JFK to the Brink,” on Jan, 5. All three parts of this series take place on the first Saturdays of the month in the Community Room of the MSPL, btw. 2:00-4:00; all are free and serve light refreshments.

We encourage you to go on-line and purchase “The Untold History of the U.S.,” an extraordinary volume, authored by Stone and Peter Kusnick, that accompanies the documentary.

PS: There is interest in forming a four-session reading circle for Leonard Covello’s, The Heart Is the Teacher. If you are interested, please send an email to GeraldJMeyer@aol.com, who will facilitate this endeavor. Please include which evening(s), from Monday to Thursday, you are available.

untold history of the united statesAbout the film: Who started the Cold War? In a month-by-month analysis, the initial aggressors are less apparent. Yet, the relationship between the Soviets and the West are none-the-less solidified with Churchill’s Iron Curtain speech. The US enters the “Red Scare” and creates The House Un-American Activities Committee in an attempt to place the “right” ideology as a bedrock for US culture. The rise of Joseph McCarthy, with the aid of the FBI, turns into a near witch hunt for Communists in America..
About Oliver Stone: This prolific and ingenious screenwriter and director has authored numerous award-winning feature  films, including SalvadorThe Fourth of JulyJFK — that have reached millions of viewers with dramatic depictions of historic events that challenge conventional interpretations of critical events of our time. Stone’s official website is oliverstone.com and his official Twitter handle is: @TheOliverStone

The Untold History of the United States: Chapter 3: The Bomb.

You are invited to join The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) continues with the last installment  of Oliver Stone’s multi-part documentary,

The Untold History of the United States: Chapter 3: The Bomb.

WHAT: Screening of The Untold History of  the United States. Chaired by Gerald Meyer, VMF co-chair of the Vito Marcantonio Forum, the film will be followed by an open discussion.
VMF Co-Chairman, Roberto Ragone will perform a reenactment of the Vito Marcantonio speech “How the Marshall Plan Betrayed Democracy: The Case of Italy.”
Emcee: VMF Treasurer, Adam Meyer
WHEN: Saturday, May 12th, 2018 from 2:00 PM to 4:30 PM
WHERE: Community Room at the Mulberry Street PL, 10 Jersey St.
(btw Lafayette and Mulberry Sts.)
PLEASE NOTE: This it the final session
Light Refreshments / Free Admission 
nucleur explosionAbout the film: This series will focus on the first four chapters of The Untold History, which spans the events leading up to United States entry into World War II until the outbreak of the Korean War. This period coincides with Marcantonio’s seven-term tenure in Congress, where he advocated for policies aligned with those presented in The Untold History.
About Oliver Stone: This prolific and ingenious screenwriter and director has authored numerous award-winning feature  films, including SalvadorThe Fourth of JulyJFK — that have reached millions of viewers with dramatic depictions of historic events that challenge conventional interpretations of critical events of our time. Stone’s official website is oliverstone.com and his official Twitter handle is: @TheOliverStone

The Untold History of the United States: A Documentary by Oliver Stone Screening and Open Discussion Part 2!

The Untold History of the United States: A Documentary by Oliver Stone
Chapter 2: Roosevelt, Truman & Wallace

untold history of the united states You are invited to join The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) continues a four-session series of Oliver Stone’s multi-part documentary, The Untold History of the United States: Chapter 2: Roosevelt, Truman & Wallace.
WHAT: Screening of The Untold History of  the United States. Chaired by VMF Treasurer, Adam V. Meyer, and moderated by Roberto Ragone, co-chair of the Vito Marcantonio Forum, the film will be followed by an open discussion
WHEN: Saturday, March 10, 2018 from 2:00 PM to 4:30 PM
WHERE: Community Room at the Mulberry Street PL, 10 Jersey St. (btw Lafayette and Mulberry Sts.)
Futures sessions will take place on , April 14th, and May 12th, at the same place and time.
Light Refreshments / Free Admission
About the film: This series will focus on the first four chapters of The Untold History, which spans the events leading up to United States entry into World War II until the outbreak of the Korean War. This period coincides with Marcantonio’s seven-term tenure in Congress, where he advocated for policies aligned with those presented in The Untold History.
About Oliver Stone: This prolific and ingenious screenwriter and director has authored numerous award-winning feature  films, including SalvadorThe Fourth of JulyJFK — that have reached millions of viewers with dramatic depictions of historic events that challenge conventional interpretations of critical events of our time. Stone’s official website is oliverstone.com and his official Twitter handle is: @TheOliverStone

Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner

Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner street naming ceremony 2017

Left to right: Frank Marcantonio Jr, Esq.; Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer; Speaker of the City Council Melissa Mark-Viverito; Actor/Activist, LuLu LoLo Pascale; Gloria Quiñones, Esq.; VMF Co-chair, Roberto Ragone; Back row: East Harlem Historian, Christopher Bell;  VMF Co-chair Gerald Meyer.

December 17, 2017
The Vito Marcantonio Forum (VMF) is especially grateful to LuLu LoLo Pascale, a native East Harlem resident and founding member of the VMF, for her dedicated hard work with Speaker of the City Council, Melissa Mark-Viverito, in accomplishing the goal of naming the northeast corner of East 116th Street and Lexington Avenue in New York City, the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner.

The event featured keynote speech from Speaker of the City Council Melissa Mark-Viverito who explained to the large crowd on hand that she is proud to serve the same district that Marcantonio once did.

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer explained how Marcantonio’s legacy should serve as an inspiration for all.

Lucky Corner photo with bird 2017 by Gloria Quiñones

Photo by Gloria Quiñones.

Vito Marcantonio’s first cousin, once removed, Frank L. Marcantonio Jr., Esq., shared his family’s pride in connection to the late, great congressman.

Actor/Activist, LuLu LoLo Pascale, performed her “Personal Memory of Vito Marcantonio” that took place when she was a young girl growing up in East Harlem near his headquarters that was just three blocks from the Lucky Corner.

Melissa Mark-Viverito’s mentor Gloria Quiñones, Esq. discussed the importance of Marcantonio’s place in the history of Puerto Rico and how Marc’s legacy can provide a source of guidance for today’s leaders.

The Lucky Corner in East Harlem New York City

Lucky Corner during Marcantonio’s re-election campaign.

VMF Co-Chairman, Roberto Ragone, performed “Marc for Mayor,” which re-enacted a speech Marcantonio gave at a political rally at the Lucky Corner in 1949.

The ceremony was rounded-out by a poetry reading of The Litany of San Vito, a poem dedicated to Marcantonio that was written by founding VMF member and author of seven books, Gil Fagiani.

The Litany of San Vito was read in three languages: Gloria Quiñones, read the Spanish version, and VMF Vice President Maria Lisella read it in Italian and local Historian Christopher Bell. See the video below for an earlier reading by LuLu LoLo Pascale at Woodlawn Cemetery in 2014:

VMF Co-Chairman, Dr. Gerald Meyer, discussed the history of the Vito Marcantonio Forum that he co-founded in 2011, stating that “the Vito Marcantonio Forum looks forward to memorializing other sites associated with the life and work of this great spokesperson of all those who had been left out of the American Dream and advocate for a program of social justice and peace.”

The ceremony commenced with Melissa Mark-Viverito, along with members of the VMF and residents of East Harlem, pulling a rope that unveiled the street sign that was mounted on the corner lamppost.

We have additional pictures of the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner Streetcorner Co-Naming Ceremony posted on our Facebook and Twitter accounts that we encourage you to Like, Share, Comment, and Re-Tweet. We also have pictures in our photo gallery that you can find here.

We also want to thank all the press who covered the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner Co-Naming Ceremony, especially AM New York, who ran a great story: https://www.amny.com/news/harlem-vito-marcantonio-1.15498344

The People’s World will be printing an article written by Gabe Falsetta and Gary Bono that we will soon post a link to.

The City Council of New York City’s official press release on the event can be found here: https://council.nyc.gov/press/2017/12/17/1554/

Below is a video of the unveiling of the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner street sign that we thank Dorothy He for providing:

DEDICATION OF THE VITO MARCANTONIO LUCKY CORNER

The VMF is proud to announce: Speaker of the City Council, Melissa Mark-Viverito, invites you to the dedication of the Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner, E116th St. and Lexington Ave. this Sunday, December 17, 2017 from 1:00PM to 2:00PM.

Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner

There will be a reading of the poem, “Litany of San Vito,” by Gil Fagiani that will be performed by: Christopher Bell, (English), Maria Lisella, (Italian), and Gloria E. Quiñones (Spanish). Other talks include:

  • Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner street namingLuLu LoLo Pascale “Personal Memory of Marc.”
  • Dr. Gerald Meyer: “The Lucky Corner: Its History, Its Future.”
  • Roberto Ragone: “Marc for Mayor, at the Lucky Corner.”
  • Melissa Mark-Viverito, Speaker of the New York City Council: Dedication.
If you would like more information on the history of Lucky Corner, see Gerald Meyer’s article:  http://www.vitomarcantonio.com/vm_lucky_corner.html 
Vito Marcantonio Lucky Corner
Street Naming
Sunday, December 17, 2017 from 1PM-2PM
E116th Street & Lexington Ave (Northeast Corner)
New York, NY 10029
We cannot thank everyone for their hard work and dedication. See you on Sunday at 1PM!
Sponsored by:
The Speaker of the New York City Council & The Vito Marcantonio Forum
______________________________________________________________________________________________
Join us for a stage reading of “Waiting for Lefty” on Dec 10th, 2017.
You can contact us for details on any of these events, however, we really would appreciate you reading everything here first:
WAITING FOR LEFTY
Sunday, December 10th at 3pm at
The Roy Arias Stages (2nd floor)
777 8th Ave between 47th and 48th Streets
Tickets will be $10 at the door.
or a reservation can be made by emailing
Directed by Art Bernal with an introduction by Gerald Meyer and an epilogue by Roberto Ragone as Vito Marcantonio, this stage reading will be dedicated to Marcantonio, who was born on December 10, 1902.

 

i-vote-my-conscience by annette t rubinsteinChelsea Rising Reading Circle | Dec 20th, 6PM-8PM
On the third Wednesday of every month, The VMF has been sponsoring a reading circle run by Co-chair Gerald Meyer, on I Vote My Conscience by Annette T. Rubinstein.
There is no admission charge and being that this is the final installment in the series–this event will end with a celebration with food and beverage provided–so don’t miss it!
Penn South Reading Room
339 W 24th St
New York, NY 10011

If Only I Were That Warrior: A Documentary Film by Valerio Ciriaci

If Only I Were That Warrior - a film by Valerio Ciriaci

The Vito Marcantonio Forum proudly presents a free screening of: If Only I Were That Warrior, with a Q & A with its director, Valerio Ciriaci

Admission: Free
Sat. Oct. 7th, 2017 | From 1:00PM to 4:00PM

Community Room
Mulberry Street Public Library
10 Jersey St. (btw Lafayette and Mulberry Sts.)

If Only I Were That Warrior explores Italy’s Fascist government’s near-forgotten invasion of Ethiopia in 1935, which was spurred on by Mussolini’s lust to avenge the Ethiopian people’s successful defense of their independence by defeating, in 1896, the Italian Army at Adwa. The second invasion smashed Ethiopia’s resistance through overwhelming force aided by the use of poison gas and other atrocious methods.

The documentary deftly illuminates this event through an exploration of the reaction—in Italy, Ethiopia, and the United States—to the erection of a monument to the leader of the Fascist invasion, General Rodolfo Graziani, in his hometown outside of Rome. Valerio Ciriaci’s daring direction advances this complex story by moving from Italy to Ethiopia, and the Ethiopian community in the United States. Isaak Lipzin’s photography presents stunning tableaux of these contrasting backgrounds. Along the way, we meet unforgettable Italians and Ethiopians determined that fascist victories not be celebrated.

In a very real sense, If Only I Were That Warrior is the Italian-Ethiopian analog to Ken Burnes and Lynn Novic’s Viet Nam War, and like that masterpiece, it alludes to a chance for reconciliation. In this way, Ciriaci and his colleagues have created a transcendent and important work.

Free Admission; Light Refreshments

Upcoming Event: The VMF / Chelsea Rising Reading Circle, on Wed. 10/18, 6:00 to 8:00, in Penn South’s Community Room 339, W 24thSt., will continue its study of Annette T. Rubinstein’s, I Vote My Conscience: Vito Marcantonio’s Debates, Speeches, and Writings.

Sixth Session of the VMF / Chelsea Rising Reading Circle 

i-vote-my-conscience by Annette T RubinsteinThe Vito Marcantonio Forum and Chelsea Rising are sponsoring a joint Reading Circle that meets on the third Wednesday of every month, from 6:00 to 8:00 PM, in Penn South’s Community Room at 339 West 24th Street (between 8th & 9th Aves., closer to 9th Ave.). The Community Room has its own entrance which is under an awning proudly announcing “Community Room.” The sixth session will take place on Wed. Sept. 20, 2017 from 6:00 to 8:00.
Our text, I Vote My Conscience: Debates, Speeches, and Writings of Vito Marcantonio, edited by Annette T. Rubinstein, is an invaluable source for all those interested in studying the life and work of seven-term (1934-36; 1938-50), American Labor Party (ALP) Congressman, Vito Marcantonio, who courageously represented East Harlem and the entire American Left. In addition to his Congressional work, Marc served as Chairperson of the ALP, and ran for Mayor in 1949, under its banner.
I Vote My Conscience presents: useful Introductory matter; excerpts from Marcantonio’s debates and speeches from each of his seven terms in office; a special section on his work on behalf of Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican people; and lastly excerpts from his legal briefs fin defense of W. E. B. DuBois, William Patterson, and other victims of McCarthyism.
The Sept. 20st session will focus on Marcantonio’s Congressional speeches and debates during his fifth term in office, pp. 193 to 221 in IVMC. Copies of I Vote My Conscience will be on sale for $10, or can be purchased in advance by sending a $13 check to Gerald Meyer 381-2nd St. Bklyn. 11215.