At the June 30 Marches Against the Fascist Regime’s Attacks on Refugee/Immigrant Families...

Agitating and Organizing FOR REVOLUTION in the Midst of an Outpouring

July 2, 2018 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a member of the Revolution Club, Chicago:

At 10:30 am on June 30, we marched under our “This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown” banner, chanting “We need a world that’s better! ¡Chinga tus fronteras!” to the delight of people waiting for the rally to begin. Many people brought out their cell phones and filmed our “entrance.”

We planted our banner and stepladder on a corner next to a table, that others had set up, which was loaded with literature, T-shirts, picket signs (100 with posters of the two memes “We Don’t Have an Immigration Problem—We Have an Imperialism Problem” and “This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown”), donation buckets, and adorned with the 5 Stops posters.

Our “stage” looked great! Noche Diaz from the Revolution Club began agitating to the crowd as others got out picket signs and literature. Maya held an enormous sign with a photo of her being dragged by police that said “Felony Charges, 7 years in prison for a SILENT protest? I, Maya, stood in silence for 11 minutes for 11 million undocumented immigrants at the University of Chicago dining hall! Revolutionaries are under attack by this system. Join, support. Donate for Legal Expenses.” She also agitated to the crowd. (For more on Maya's case, go here.)

We stayed at this spot for two hours, until the march stepped off. The entire time, Club members were agitating, getting out materials (flyer for July 4th picnic, Club flyer for the marches across the country and HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution—other people were getting out 1000s of palm cards for BA’s talk in the crowds) and recruiting people into the revolution. We had a constant crowd listening, and joining in response to calls from the agitator, as the crowd at the protest swelled and swelled to many thousands.

Many people put money in our big donation bucket in front of the agitator (a lesson learned from the revcom article on organizing). This included at least four $20s and a $100 bill as well as lots of smaller bills. We got another $100 bill from a man who got four BA Speaks: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS! T-shirts.

Shortly after our arrival, Noche brought a young woman over to me to get a Club T-shirt, which she put on immediately. She was with us the entire day. It turns out she had run with us at the March for Our Lives and was so glad to find us here. Another young woman got a shirt and gave me her contact information. She lost track of us but rejoined us at the end of the march wearing her shirt. She told us it was her first demonstration ever. She had just moved into the city from the suburbs.

Just before the march stepped off, our second banner—“We Don’t Have an Immigration Problem, We Have an Imperialism Problem”—was brought over from the table. As we stepped into the street new people, who had been listening to the agitation, were helping carry our banners.

The whole march was very spirited but our contingent was even more so. We led chants (“We Are Here to Show Rage, No More Children in a Cage,” “This System Can Not Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown” and others) which many in the crowd took up. I was able to run up to a few people who were really getting into the chants, get them materials, get their contact information. When we marched by ICE, the crowd around us let up a roar “Fuck ICE, Fuck ICE.”

We swung back around and the march returned to its starting point. The Club set up in the street, agitating, getting out materials. Several of the people who had joined us from the crowd during the march put on Club T-shirts and got materials to distribute.

Some Christian fascists with ugly anti-abortion pictures were set up across the street and were protected by a line of police. People surrounded them chanting “shame, shame, shame.” Club members jumped into the fray, doing agitation and leading chants (which many, many women of all ages joined in with) for abortion rights.

A young woman and her mother called me over. They had heard Maya talking about her case and wanted to know which court it was at and with which judge. The young woman said she wanted to be a public defender and gave her phone number and email to stay in touch about Maya’s case.

The heat all day had been what the weather reports called “dangerously high,” and it was getting to me and I had to leave before others in the Club. As I was walking away a young woman who had given me her number while we were marching called out to me. I took her over to where the Club was still posted up to get her a T-shirt and become part of the summation meeting Club members were organizing.

She and perhaps half a dozen people we met at the protest, in their Club shirts, went off with Club members to do summation and learn more about the Club at a nearby restaurant. Another crew from the Club stayed out in the crowd, which was dwindling but not yet gone, to get out T-shirts and recruit more people into the Club.

I went downstairs under the plaza to catch my train and was met by a crowd of people from the protest dancing and singing along with a blind street musician singing songs in Spanish at the underground train stop.

* * * * *

"This system is outrageous. It puts our kids in cages. We need a revolution! It must be overthrown!"
Uniting, contending and relying on the people at #KeepFamiliesTogetherMarch

From members of the Revolution Club, Los Angeles:

As this system has brought humanity to the threshold of a new nuclearized fascist era and the Trump/Pence regime moves closer to consolidating fascist rule in the most powerful imperialist country in the world, hundreds of thousands took to the streets in protest against one of the latest sickening criminal outrages of this regime: the separation of children from their parents crossing the southern border in order to terrorize people desperately fleeing the poverty, misery, and violence that their imperialist system has caused. Millions are outraged and horrified but too much stuck in the ways that things are done under this rotten and illegitimate system; “Vote them out!” is a chant regularly heard at many of the latest protests against these ethnic cleansing policies reminiscent of the Nazi era.

We know that left to its own, the trajectory of things now can only lead to tragic horrors for these masses of children and for all of humanity around the world so the Revolution Club went in and contended within a large march (#FamiliesBelongTogetherMarch) in downtown LA, which was held as part of the nationwide protest called for June 30 around the separation of undocumented immigrant families—which has caused widespread outrage and anger throughout the country and world directed at the Trump/Pence regime and its officials, as well as at the system that they serve, and specifically the agency ICE.

Thousands of people took the streets here in Los Angeles and we knew we had to unite with people but also knew that more than anything, we had to fight for the way out if this was going to go anywhere that came close to dealing with this problem, and that was going to take struggle. We had to fight for the way out: revolution to do away with this whole rotten system of capitalism-imperialism, and the creation of a whole new society free from exploitation and oppression.

We brought two banners, “This system cannot be REFORMED—It must be OVERTHROWN!” and a banner promoting the film of BA’s talk, THE TRUMP/PENCE REGIME MUST GO! In The Name of Humanity, We REFUSE To Accept a Fascist America. A Better World IS Possible. Some of us had read the “Organizing People Into the Revolution... on the Spot” article up on and decided that carrying these banners can be something we can call on the masses to do as part of getting organized right then and there. We put together our banners and set them aside. We then weaved through the crowd in formation and right away called on people who we had been talking to, to join us. Two women got in formation with the Club, each with a stack of HOW WE CAN WIN—How We Can Really Make Revolution (HWCW) and flyers for the upcoming ANTI-4th of July BBQ as we snaked through the crowd agitating and chanting, “How do we get out of this mess? Revolution—Nothing Less!” People in the crowd really took this chant up as we were making our way through. We don’t know what they all thought about what was meant by revolution, but there were energetic responses when we agitated about the Democrats not being the answer and how relying on them will only lead to conciliating with these horrific crimes.

We aimed to “beat the bushes” with our agitation while also challenging the crowd as a whole to confront that we cannot allow a single child being put in a cage no matter who is doing it, we have to not stop fighting back until the horrors that brought us out here were no more and that’s going to take breaking out of the normal channels, and the killing confines of this system.

At one point we stopped to agitate in an open space in the middle of a small crowd. One of us noticed that we weren’t doing much organizing so we briefly reoriented and emphasized that we can’t be content with being the “radical presence” at this event, we have to accumulate forces now. We marched back to our banner and pulled out our soapbox to start agitating to the crowd nearest us. One of us taking the lead from that same article laid out stacks of HWCW, BAsics, a big donation bucket, and BA Speaks: REVOLUTION—NOTHING LESS! T-shirts in front of the agitator’s box. We called on masses to get with the movement for revolution right now.

One of the biggest changes from our recent work—and the cause of some of our real breakthroughs at this event—was the much more thorough, consistent, and sharp involvement of and calling upon the masses. We put the immediate, not just broader, needs of the revolution before the masses—and they responded repeatedly and with enthusiasm. Before marching, we put forward to people that we needed people to run with us—that if they felt the agitation... if they had a fire in their belly for a whole better world—that they needed to get with this right now. We called on people to help carry the banners and pass out the strategy for revolution, HWCW, and the flyer to the ANTI-4th of July BBQ. Masses came forward to carry both banners and take stacks of HWCW and flyers. Throughout the course of those few hours, around 15 new people ran with us, carrying out basic tasks and getting into and contributing to this movement in beginning but important ways, even as they were just hearing about the Club or Bob Avakian for the first time. New people we had just met were raising a 12-foot banner with the message “This system cannot be REFORMED—It must be OVERTHROWN!” and carrying it through throngs of people with considerable burden (and thus there was this continuing need to switch people out, which involved getting new people into this on the spot).

While marching, we incorporated some new chants along with older ones, including the refrain: This system is outrageous / It puts our kids in cages / we need a revolution / it must be overthrown!

Towards the end, a small crowd gathered, largely opposing the small fascist presence at the end of the march route, and took up our chant, “1,2,3,4, Slavery Genocide and War, 5,6,7,8, AMERICA WAS NEVER GREAT.”

We repeated this chant again and again—and masses took this up to the degree of taking it further beyond our immediate area, shouting down the fascists as they left the area with the help of their pig escort.

Also taking note from “Organizing People Into the Revolution... on the Spot,” we called on people to donate to the movement for revolution throughout our agitation. All throughout we were promoting and selling tickets to the upcoming AMERICA WAS NEVER GREAT Anti-4th of July Picnic fundraiser, and fundraising was interwoven throughout the whole thing. When people pulled out a dollar bill, we’d challenge them to donate more.

Some things that we are summing up further are: How did we do in bringing in the core message* through our agitation and in organizing people, including how did we do at connecting what people did to where it connected with what is in part 2 of HWCW? Multiple club members agitated and there needs to be more collective wrangling in what our agitation should be going in to something like this. An approach that we’ve emphasized but have not taken up sufficiently is that agitation is a collective responsibility. We do a lot of on the spot raising of what should be part of the agitation, what are the strengths and weaknesses, but we think we should have more discussion of what it should be beforehand.

*The core message of the revolution, as laid out at, is:

In all that we do, the utter “intolerability” of this system and the towering crimes and atrocities it continually commits, here and all over the world, must really be driven home in a powerful way, along with the fact that it is no longer necessary to live under such a system; that this system cannot be reformed, that to transform society to fully achieve the 5 Stops and abolish and move beyond all relations of exploitation and oppression, everywhere in the world requires an actual revolution, which, as emphasized in HWCW, means not some minor changes within this system but the actual overthrow, yes overthrow, of this system, through actually defeating its armed forces of oppression and repression, when the necessary conditions (a revolutionary situation and a revolutionary people in the millions) have been brought into being (as set forth in HWCW), dismantling the institutions of this system and building a whole new society on a radically different economic and political basis; that this is something we (continually involving new people in geometric advances) must be actively working toward, from right now forward; that this system of capitalism-imperialism can be replaced by a far better system—one that is truly emancipatory—as embodied in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America; and that there is the basis, in the new communism and the leadership of BA, to make all this a reality. [back]

Revolution Club Chicago
Photo: Special to

Revolution Club Chicago
Photo: Special to

Revolution Club LA
Photo: Special to

Revolution Club LA
Photo: Special to

Contact the Revolution Club to find out more:

(312) 804-9121
1857 E. 71st Street
Chicago, Illinois 60649

Los Angeles:

New York City:
NYC Revolution Club

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