“Radical doesn’t mean crazy.”
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., touted her working class experience and promised bold solutions for the black community in a fiery speech Friday.
Speaking in front of the National Action Network, an African American organization founded by Rev. Al Sharpton, Ocasio-Cortez championed her working class roots while advocating for her Green New Deal and other “radical solutions”.
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“I’m proud to be a bartender, ain’t nothing wrong with that,” Ocasio-Cortez told the audience.
“There’s nothing wrong with working retail, folding clothes for other people to buy. There is nothing wrong with preparing the food that your neighbors will eat. There is nothing wrong with driving the buses that take your family to work. There is nothing wrong with being a working person in the United States of America, and there is everything dignified about it,” she continued.
Invoking the memory of Martin Luther King Jr. while touting her ambitious Green New Deal proposal, Ocasio-Cortez argued her ideas may be radical, but they’re not crazy.
“What we need to do in radically deep problems, is propose radically visionary solutions,” Ocasio Cortez said. “Because radical doesn’t mean crazy. Radical means addressing the root. Addressing the rot.”
“We have proposed a Green New Deal for the future of America,” Ocasio-Cortez continued. “Within that resolution, we do not shy away from bold conversations of healthcare, housing, and education as human rights. Of living wages and dignified work.”
Ocasio-Cortez championed policies, including reparations, she believes will help disadvantaged communities.
“An end to mass incarceration, the war on drugs, examining and pursuing an agenda of reparations, and fixing the opioid crisis too,” Ocasio-Cortez said.
The event, which is meant to be an audition for the 2020 presidential candidates, featured a long list of progressive speakers in addition to Ocasio-Cortez.
The New York Democrat is seen by many as a rising star in the Democratic Party. Shortly after taking office in January, Ocasio-Cortez introduced her ambitious Green New Deal Resolution.
Despite being embraced by many prominent Democrats, critics have widely criticized the plan as unrealistic and too expensive.
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- Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez speak at NAN Conference on April 5, 2019: Screen grab from YouTube