Promoting the New Film, BA Speaks: Revolution—Nothing Less! Bob Avakian Live and Building the Movement for Revolution

“From the First Seconds, the Controversy Ripped”

February 5, 2013 | Revolution Newspaper |


“What’s the problem? THE WHOLE DAMN SYSTEM! What’s the solution? REVOLUTION!”  In a busy South Central L.A. shopping district this weekend, the Revolution hit the scene in a new way, arriving with a crew marching the four corners of a large intersection determined, tight, and on a mission with the message and title of Bob Avakian’s new talk: BA Speaks: Revolution­—Nothing Less! Bob Avakian Live.  You couldn’t help take notice that something was happening.  People passing by stopped and grabbed for palmcards and newspapers, or just to look and see.  And when the marching stopped and the revolutionaries got on the bullhorn, things really got going.  They opened with the simple, radical truth that the situation for people here and around the world is intolerable, that it doesn’t have to be this way, that only revolution, nothing less, not voting, not Obama, not micro-loans, not praying to God, can solve what humanity is up against, and that we have the leadership, strategy, vision, and science to make this revolution.

From the first seconds, the controversy ripped.  Backward fools popped out to uphold Obama and try to put a stop to this whole scene, playing the role of keepers of the order saying things like, “you can’t come into this neighborhood and say that.”  The revolutionaries on the bullhorn called out to the people standing all around: “if you like the way the world is, you can step aside, we don’t have time for you.  But if you HATE this shit, if you think it’s intolerable, you need to get with BA and this movement for revolution we are building nationwide.”

Posting "More on Choices..." in laundry
"More on Choices...And Radical Changes" posted on laundry-room wall. Photo: Special to Revolution

Getting off the bus, people stepped into this sharply polarized scene.  Many were drawn forward and strengthened by it, stopping and coming over to talk with the revolutionaries. “I’ve never heard anybody say this out loud,” was one comment, and “You’re in the right place—people here need to hear this,” another.  An older Black man posed a serious question—how are you going to defeat the system?  A group of skaters debated what really is the problem, the government, the people themselves, or the system?  A white woman married to a Black man got the paper and said she hates the inhuman way police treat people and all the inhumanity of the system.  One guy who asked what this was about said he thought the corporations have too much power. After talking with people about the problem and solution, hearing that there is a way out and that BAsics answers the questions involved in making revolution today, he got a copy and said he was really glad to have walked down this street today and run into the revolution.

From the shopping area the crew went to a nearby Black and Latino neighborhood characterized by people catching hell every day under this system.  Not a lot of people were on the streets, but some opened the windows of their apartments to hear better when the revolutionaries came marching down the street chanting: “The system is evil, fight the power, transform the people, Revolution is what we need, to liberate humanity!”  As a sound truck played clips from Bob Avakian’s Revolution talk, the revolutionaries went into courtyards and knocked on doors, telling people the revolution is here and calling people to come out of their houses to hear Bob Avakian’s interview by Cornel West.  A student whose family is from Guatemala looked at the palm card he got and said, “Is this communism?  Ok!  I’ll be there!” and returned.  While he was listening to the interview, one of his friends came walking down the street and stopped, surprised to see him there with the revolutionaries, and told him, “Hey you’re supposed to be at the house so we can go to the concert.”  The student told him, “I’m listening to this, I’ll be there in 10 minutes,” and stayed to finish hearing it, commenting afterwards that many of his friends only see things in terms of Democrats and Republicans, and don’t know another way is possible.

Posting palmcards on doors

Posting palmcards on every door.
Photo: Special to Revolution

A Latina said she couldn’t go down to the corner to listen but wanted to know more about the revolution. “You guys are really addressing the bigger questions,” a Black man said, and donated for a CD of the Cornel West interview. A father walking up the street shared his concerns about his sons and all the youth destined to a life of oppression and oblivion even before they are born and seriously discussed the need for revolution to change that.

Throughout the day there was a sense that the revolution is real.  Some people took small amounts of palm cards as a way of participating in this movement, or donated pennies to dollars in the penny jars, or got a CD of one of the interviews with Bob Avakian or a copy of Revolution newspaper.  And the revolutionaries made sure everyone we talked to got the message: “We’ll be back next week!” so people could find us again, tell us their thoughts on the interview and the newspaper, share their experience with palm cards and other materials, and get more into the movement for revolution.


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