Prison Radio
Mumia Abu-Jamal

There are remarkable men and women in the world who did something extraordinary in
their lives for which they will be long remembered. And then there are quite extraordinary
people like Marty Goodman who did many things, not once, but throughout a long and
active life.
Marty was many things: revolutionary socialist, militant trade unionist, anti-imperialist,
anti-racist, and anti-zionist activist, just to name a few. He engaged almost daily in
movement activities, often going to two, three, or even four, or five a day. Rallies,
marches, picket lines, public forums. You name it. Marty Goodman was there, often with a
sack of socialist newspapers or his Socialist Action newsletter. There he was, engaging
with the people.
His interests were wide and diverse, from the Haiti Liberté newspaper to UNAC (United
Anti-War Coalition), or the Julian Assange Defense Group, to the Mobilization to Free
Mumia Abu-Jamal. Yep!
He was also a passionate journalist and writer of books, including his 2020 work, The Hell
that Is Haiti: 200 Years of Racism and Imperialist Intervention, a work of radical history and
insight. Marty wrote in that text:
“The history of the fight against the racist deportation of Haitians, the criminal U.S and
U.N. occupations, and the super-exploitation of Haitian labor is a long one. Suffice it to
say, it must be viewed in the context of 200 years of U.S. imperialism and its evil twin,
racism. Make no mistake. This outrage has the unmistakable teeth marks of two equally
ravenous villains – the Democratic and Republican parties, the twin representatives of the
capitalist system itself. Three quarters of the Haitian population live on two US dollars, or
less, per day.”
Wow! Fighting words. Right? The words of Marty Goodman.
Just last year, in December 2023, Marty wrote a powerful review of a book by Palestinian
scholar Rashid Khalidi entitled The Hundred Year War on Palestine. Marty’s review had the
following lines: “I was raised in a working-class Jewish home in South Florida during the
1950s and 60s. Like other Jews that I knew, I was terrified at what seemed to be a sea of
Jew-hating Arabs threatening poor, peaceful Israel. But on reading iconic left journalist I.F.
Stone on Israel, he helped shake me out of my deep sleep. In delving deeper into Israel’s
bloody record, difficult to obtain in those days, I discovered that the Zionist propaganda
that I was raise on was BS.” The terse prose of Marty Goodman, radical journalist and
revolutionary socialist.
Marty Goodman lived 74 winters in America.
With Love not Phear this is Mumia Abu-Jamal.

These commentaries are recorded by Prison Radio.

Union Mourns Station Agent Marty Goodman, 74, Dedicated Activist

MARCH 17 — The Union regrets to announce the passing of former Executive Board Member and longtime Station Agent Marty Goodman, who was found deceased at his residence in Manhattan yesterday. Marty cut a wide swath as a progressive activist not only in the labor movement but also in the fight against imperialism in Haiti and in favor of the rights of Palestinians. He retired from NYCT several years ago.

He came into office as a member of New Directions under Roger Toussaint in 2000. He embraced rank and file activism, and could always be found on the front lines where working people needed a voice. Stations VP Robert Kelley expressed his sorrow over Marty’s passing and said he would organize a memorial for him. He had no next of kin who could be reached.

Marc Kagan, formerly Chief of Staff to President Toussaint, said of Marty: “Stations was historically the hardest Department to organize, because people only see the person they’re relieving or who is relieving them. But Marty was known throughout the system. He would go out with his flyers or union leaflets and he would go from one end of a line to the other, and do it day after day after day until he covered the whole system. People knew him everywhere. He was the most principled guy I have ever known.”

Marty was a prolific writer for the newspaper Socialist Action, and many of his articles can be found there online.