People For the American Way (PFAW)
People For the American Way and its affiliated PFAW Foundation educate, energize, and equip Americans to build a country that more fully reflects the values of freedom, fairness, and opportunity in a diverse democratic society. PFAW was founded in 1981 by Norman Lear, with the steadfast support of the late Congresswoman Barbara Jordan and a group of business, civic, religious, and civil rights leaders, who were disturbed by the divisive rhetoric of newly politicized televangelists. Lear produced a TV spot featuring a forklift operator saying “I have a problem” with preachers telling people they’re good or bad Christians based on their political views, concluding with “That’s not the American way.” The ad sparked an outpouring of support and the founding of a national organization.
Now more than 30 years old, PFAW and PFAW Foundation continue to defend the fundamental values laid out in the U.S. Constitution, support judicial nominees who will defend equality for all people under the law, and nurture a new generation of young leaders fighting for the American Way. To this end, PFAW has also spawned two offshoot groups.
Young People 4 (YP4) – www.youngpeoplefor.org – is a long-term leadership development initiative seeking to empower the next generation of progressive leaders by identifying young campus and community leaders, connecting them to the broader progressive movement, and providing them with the knowledge and skills they can use to become powerful advocates for positive and sustainable social change in their communities.
The Young Elected Officials (YEO) – yeonetwork.org – is comprised of elected leaders from diverse backgrounds between the ages of 18 and 35 whose commitment to progressive values trumps party affiliation. The group now includes over 650 elected officials serving in offices ranging from local school boards to the United States Congress, in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
Right Wing Watch – www.rightwingwatch.org – PFAW’s daily chronicling of the most ignorant, intolerant, and just plain lunatic pronouncements from the far right, has become the definitive collection of the toxic emissions spewed by those dedicated to the erosion and elimination of the freedoms guaranteed us by the Constitution.