Red Flag Newspaper
International Communist Workers Party
The racist lynching of “Black Lives Matter” activist Sandy Bland on July 13 in a Texas jail, following her arrest for failing to signal a lane change has ignited smoldering anger over racist police terror in the US.
Marches around the country call for “justice.” ICWP must continue to join these protests, explaining how capitalism needs racism and racist police terror, and how communist revolution can create the conditions to end racism once and for all. We also must continue taking communist ideas to workers in our communities, factories, and bus divisions.
“Thank you for your work,” said a Los Angeles Transit (MTA) driver at a bus division where we regularly distribute Red Flag after taking a copy of the newspaper and our leaflet condemning capitalism for the murder of Sandy Bland.
“My brother was killed the same way,” said another driver.
At another division, more MTA workers than usual took Red Flag and the communist leaflet. Many greeted our banner calling for a world without money, wages, racism or borders and a sign saying “Sandy Bland’s life matters” with their fists held high. Others honked their horns as they passed comrades holding the banner and signs.
Several days earlier, three comrades in another part of town held posters and distributed over 100 Party leaflets in an hour and a half in a pedestrian-friendly commercial area. Passers-by were overwhelmingly positive. “I have been upset about this all day,” said one white woman. “But what can I do?”
“Get out there with a few friends and some posters and markers like we did,” a comrade responded. “But to end racism we need to end capitalism. Read this copy of our communist paper Red Flag to find out more about how.”
Racism is a cornerstone of capitalism. Without racist terror, capitalism couldn’t have spread from 17th century Europe, forcing the commoners of three continents into wage or chattel slavery. It couldn’t have expropriated and decimated indigenous populations in Africa and the Americas. Without racism, a tiny handful of capitalist exploiters could not, today, maintain their deadly hold on the massive and mighty working class.
Without racism, the rulers couldn’t get away with the constant murder of unarmed men and women at the hands of the police. They need racist lies to justify the existence of a capitalist legal system that exists mainly to protect the wealth of the few from the masses who created it. The rulers are terrified that we the masses will rise and fight for a communist society that meets our needs, not theirs.
A communist world is possible. The elimination of the wage system, which pits worker against worker and keeps us all wage-slaves, will allow the development of new relationships of collective work for human need. We will share work and its fruits “from each according to commitment and ability, to each according to need.” Mobilizing the masses for communism— creating the working-class unity required to smash capitalism and build a new society—will forge relationships of unity where there was division and enable us to win the fight against racism
On this foundation, with constant political struggle, racism and nationalism, and the very ideas of “races” and “nations,” will become relics of the past. When the masses rule, no one will starve while others live in luxury. The working class collectively will guarantee the safety of us all. There will be no place for the police that now function as an occupying army for the capitalist class.
The rulers are throwing us some crumbs of reform — like body cameras and indicting a few killer cops –but capitalism is based on racism, and no reforms can change that! We must mobilize the masses for communist revolution to end the material basis of the racism that killed Sandy Bland and so many others. Let’s fight for a communist world in which all our lives will truly matter!
There are striking similarities between what has happened to Sandy Bland in the US and Mido Macia here in South Africa.
Mido Macia, an immigrant from Mozambique, was driving his own taxi apparently on a wrong lane. He was stopped by police officers for this minor traffic violation. When Macia supposedly resisted arrest, the police became annoyed. They handcuffed him on the outside backdoor of their vehicle and dragged him on the road for a while to the nearby police station. He later died from his injuries in the police cells.
This incident took place in February 2013 and the case has been dragging on since. Nine police officers accused for his murder are standing trial. They had all pleaded not guilty and the charges are likely to be changed to assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and not murder.
The family of Macia have been left without a breadwinner and are struggling to make ends meet. This is not the last and only incident involving police murdering their victims. Recently, there have been quite a few similar incidents reported.
The Marikana commission report is out and its findings do more harm than good to the families who lost their loved ones. The report absolves all those who were implicated and has left the families of the victims devastated. Like all other commissions before it, the commission on the Sharpsville massacre in 1960, and the Langa massacre in 1985 to name but a few, it has served to bury the truth.
This shows the bankruptcy of bourgeois democracy which peddles the lie that police serve the interest of all, instead of the few in the propertied class. The illusions that hold the masses to believe in the executive, judiciary, and police arms of the capitalist states will be swept away by a thoroughgoing communist revolution.
Mobilizing the masses for communist revolution therefore becomes key. Reforms only serve to perpetuate the miseries of the working class and make the brutal bosses’ system last much longer. The working class must understand that bosses’ violence can only end with the workers and soldiers taking up arms to smash capitalism. Away with racist, brutal police! Join ICWP and mobilize the masses for communist revolution.
WILMINGTON, CA, July 29--Oil refinery workers and community supporters marched against Phillips Oil Company’s plans to force workers to tend two complicated machines instead of one--a safety threat to all. Marchers welcomed Red Flag, taking 75 papers and engaging in discussions about communism.
POTOSI, BOLIVIA, August 5 – Thousands of striking silver and zinc miners have been on an indefinite general strike. They walked out of the Japanese-owned San Cristobal mine on July 7 in response to falling silver prices which are devastating their already precarious lives. Strikers have fought police with rocks and dynamite, and hundreds occupied a hydro-electric plant. They are demanding increased government investment in this poor, mainly indigenous region. But to liberate themselves from capitalism’s brutal exploitation and crises of overproduction these miners need to mobilize for communist revolution. (More next issue)