There is no greater time to build the Young Communist League

A special report to the 29th National Convention of the Communist Party

On behalf of the Young Communist League, USA I want to extend our congratulations to the Communist Party USA on its successful, exciting and dynamic 29th National Convention. I would also like to welcome the over 30 YCL delegates and guests. If you could please stand. Let's give these young comrades, and future leaders of the CPUSA, a warm and enthusiastic welcome.

I have been a member of the YCL for eleven years and a member of the Party for six. This is my second Party Convention. I can say without a doubt that the current political moment and dynamics are by far more complicated than they have been in my history of involvement with the YCL and Party. With the stakes so high and path so filled with curves, bumps, and hills that we need this Convention to clarify our goals and direction. If Sam's opening report, the discussion that has followed and the planning and discussion in the workshops, is any indication then the path ahead of the Party and YCL is one filled with promise. This promise can only be fulfilled with the creative application of Marxism to meet the needs of working people, young, older and everyone in between.

Now more than ever we need to reexamine and bring to life the phrase "The Communist Party is the party of youth; and the youth are the future of the Communist Party". If we are to fulfill our potential, and meet the demands and calling for our vision, voice and outlook, then we need a bigger, broader, stronger YCL. This can only be accomplished with the help of the Party; our younger comrades in the YCL cannot do this alone, nor have they ever been able. The YCL has only been able to grow with the help, guidance and attention of our Party comrades. We in the Party must find new, creative ways and forms to build and grow the YCL. And our comrades in the YCL need to be actively engaging more young people and introducing them and bring them around to Party activities and events. We must struggle with young people to show them that the Communist Party USA is their political home too.

Building on the conversations that have happened here, the Party is hosting a conference on the youth work July 17-18 in Chicago. Party members and YCLers are invited to attend to build the movement for jobs for young people and strengthen the relationship between the Party and YCL. Following the conference will be a 4-day YCL School.

There is no greater time than now to build the YCL - with so many young people turning their backs old dogmas and ideology and fervently searching for answers to the problems we face. The door is wide open for a mass, broad and strong YCL - if we are willing to open it. So I charge everyone here at the Convention, to open the door, step through, and join me and others in building the future of the Party through building and growing the Young Communist League.