Revolution #87, May 6, 2007
Letter from a Chicano Youth
Fox News to Revolution
Revolution received the following correspondence:
I am 14 years old and am a freshman in high school. I was raised in a proletariat neighborhood to immigrant parents. I am a first generation Chicano. My whole life now revolves around social justice. I do various political organizing including distributing Revolution. Although now I see the necessity for change and justice, I wasn’t always like this. Even though I grew up in a struggling household, I, for some odd reason, was pulled into the realm of the mass media (Fox News and the History Channel mainly). It taught me that wars waged by the U.S. were “necessary for freedom” and were inevitable, that the Americans were the “good guys.” I started believing that we were the greatest country in the world and that there could be nothing better at a very early age (around eight or so). So when 9/11 came, you could imagine my response: “my” country had been “attacked” and now we have to get the “bad guys.”
I went along with the whole bandwagon of getting those responsible. I was glued to Fox News! When the Bush regime came out with the so-called “evidence” of Saddam Hussein and Iraq being responsible for 9/11, I wanted retribution for those deaths. I wanted Saddam’s head in front of me. As the months went by and the casualties started racking up, I was still paying attention. I started seeing the casualties shoot up -- 400, 600, 850, 1,000. I started researching the war. I found out how much money we were wasting every day. I found out that we were using unguided cluster bombs, napalm and uranium-enriched weaponry. I found the true Iraqi death count. But what really got me were the pictures from Abu Ghraib. I remember seeing them and crying. Bush said that Saddam had nothing to do with 9/11. I drew the line: the country that I had so loved and appreciated, the country that my parents had suffered so much to come to, had lied to me. But not only that, they lied and admitted it. They boasted about it.
I opposed the war by then. And I opposed Bush. But I still didn’t see the complete picture. I knew that there was something much more difficult and complicated. I started asking myself: Whose laws allow this to happen? America’s. Whose president is doing this? America’s. I then realized that this isn’t a single war that happened to have turned out wrong, it is a result and representation of this system, capitalism. It is a system that was built and is sustained by the exploitation of people. The war in Iraq is just this system implementing its plans. I then discovered the Project for the New American Century and how the Bush Administration, even before being in office, had planned it all. It had planned Afghanistan and it had planned Iraq. It also indicated that they might have even planned 9/11! I had to do something now.
I found out about World Can’t Wait just three days before October 5, 2006. I went to the October 5th [demonstration] in SF and, as I clearly remember, got there early. I remember seeing people getting equipment ready and figured I should just help out, since I had nothing else to do. They immediately let me know what I could do. They made me part of something that I didn’t know much about, other than we were helping end the war by setting up tables and picket signs. Then when the march came near, they let me be a monitor. I was helping organize a protest for the first time (and I didn’t know it then, but it would be far from my last). The feeling was incredible. I was part of something HUGE!
After being with WCW for a month or two, I was introduced to Bob Avakian and the Party and its revolutionary thinking. The first issue of Revolution that I read and discussed with people was the “Bringing Forward Another Way” piece by Avakian. I had then found something that completely fit my needs. I knew what was wrong at that time. I knew what was needed. But then I didn’t know exactly how to get it. Avakian introduced me to the thought of a Revolutionary Communist revolution in the “belly of the beast.” He gave me a platform -- structure and theory -- behind what I knew the world needed. He formulated a response from me to the system. He opened my eyes to the idea of how we could accomplish change. I had never seen anything like it! I started looking into the complete ideas of the Party -- Marxism-Leninism-Maoism -- and really saw the solution to end the oppression. I found something that wasn’t only the liberation of a few, but the emancipation of all of humanity.
A lot of organizations, TV shows or documentaries do a really good job at reporting the truth. They really point out the flaws and show you the suffering. Some of them even give you a reason: capitalism. But which TV documentary have you seen that leaves you with a solution? I’ll wait… NONE! Avakian has shown to me that solution. If everyone could get an issue of Revolution and could dive into the politics of revolution, we could accomplish so much.
I started to get involved in distributing the paper. I found it a good experience to get to know the people behind revolution and to get a deeper understanding of what has been brought forward. I had never seen communism in practice. After learning about it and seeing, I started to see the possibility. I started to connect things with my everyday life to Avakian and to the RCP’s platform. What can we do to help the homeless? Nothing through this system: revolution! What can we do about police brutality? Nothing through this system: revolution! I began to understand the meaning of revolution: it’s not some bloody conquest to form another everlasting dictatorship, it’s an attempt for change. It’s not only an attempt, though, it is success.
I have really gained a lot so far from the overall experience of taking the paper out. Before, I had been discussing the paper with people but had not really taken it out and talked to others about it. So it really helped me set in stone what I believe because when you prove it to somebody else, that really assures you that this is what you believe because you are telling other people about it--letting other people know that there could be a change. And really the main thing that got to me was taking it out to the proletarian neighborhoods that I grew up in since I was a little baby. When you go to the people who are directly affected by capitalism it is a really touching experience because these are the people we are working for –these are the people that are going to be saved and, not only that, are going to be part of the revolution and part of making that change for themselves, and for everyone else too. And every single person that we came up to--I don’t recall one person in the day laborers that said that we were wrong. Every single one of them said we need change right now! We need revolution. We can discuss everything about the change later on but right now we need a revolution. We just need to be talking about a change and bringing up the ideas. That is the main thing that I got just talking to people about the ideas. They don’t have to completely agree with the ideas, or agree with Bob Avakian or what the Party brings up but just as long as they talk about the need for revolution. If you agree that there needs to be change and needs to be revolution that is really the only thing you need to get along with me and we can work from there.
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