Activist Tom Hayden has passed away at the age of 76.
Tom Hayden was a radical activist, an anti-war protestor, a California State Assemblyperson and State Senator, as well as a prolific author. While Tom wrote a number of books, he's best known as the author of the Port Huron Statement, organizing the Students for a Democratic Society, and was indicted on federal charges of conspiracy and incitement to riot at the 1968 Chicago Democratic convention.
I grew up in Tom's constituency of Santa Monica. I have nothing but respect, admiration, and gratitude for Tom Hayden and his work. I had the opportunity to take a class Tom taught at Santa Monica College in the early 90s, and as a student leader I got to spend a bit of time with him. Tom was a champion for the students of California's community college system, and helped ensure they would have a loud and well-funded voice when representing themselves.
While Tom's long record includes fighting for so many critically important issues: labor, immigration, animal rights, the environment, and against war, the most important thing I learned from Tom Hayden is that some of our politicians really believe in what they fight for.
I may not always have agreed with Tom Hayden, but I always trusted him.
Tom Hayden, December 11, 1939 – October 23, 2016. Rest in peace.