Sunday, January 16, 2011

Open Letter to WW Readers from Leslie Feinberg

The following letter was written on Jan. 6.

The reason readers haven’t seen my byline in Workers World newspaper for several years is that I am ill and disabled from late-stage, long-untreated tick-borne infectious diseases.

Since I began working on the newspaper in 1974, I wrote, proofread, edited and did other labor on Workers World during more than 30-plus years of undiagnosed cyclical illnesses and disabilities. However, I became acutely ill and disabled in October 2007, and I have been unable to recover my health.

I am proud to remain on the masthead of Workers World newspaper as a Managing Editor; however I must add this fact: I am on protracted medical leave.

I regret that I am so seriously ill now, and so disabled as a result, that I am no longer able to answer online inquiries to the newspaper about previous articles.

A partial bibliography of articles that I wrote in Workers World from 1974 to 2002 was compiled by M. R. Cook, a working-class undergraduate student. Cook’s enormous contribution of bibliographic labor can be found at

Bylined articles I wrote between 2002 and 2007 are accessible through keyword search at

As I began to understand how ill I was becoming, I tried to reference information from my library and online research in the series “Lavender & Red.” (

The books I used are referenced in the series, and other facts can be found via online web research with keyword phrases.

I regret not having been able to endnote and develop a bibliography for more of the entire Lavender & Red series. As I was becoming increasingly ill, however, I was able — with a lot of comradely help — to apply book-standard referencing to about a quarter of the L&R series — the articles compiled into the book entitled “Rainbow Solidarity in Defense of Cuba.” (

I believe the following four articles, which I wrote for Workers World, best flesh out the overall concluding political trajectory of the Lavender & Red series:

“What’s behind anti-gay pogrom in Russia?” (June 2, 2006)

“LGBT liberation: An essential working-class struggle” (June 24, 2006)

“Struggle over Middle East reaches into world LGBT movements” (July 27, 2006)

“Death of trans immigrant in detention forges united protests” (Sept. 8, 2007)

All my writing has been strengthened by the labor of others, as I have contributed my labor to the writing of others. The strengths of my written work — as part of my adult lifetime of political activism — are based on collective labor and the lessons of collective struggle. The weaknesses and errors are my own as an individual.

Today, it is very painful, slow and difficult for me to read and write — and even to speak. But when I read, I make sure to read Workers World newspaper.
Articles copyright 1995-2011 Workers World. Verbatim copying and distribution of this entire article is permitted in any medium without royalty provided this notice is preserved.

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