Revolution #367, December 29, 2014 (

Voice of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

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Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Rock in the New Year With Resistance to Police Murder!

A Call from Carl Dix

December 18, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


On New Year's Eve, as the clock winds down on 2014, the powers that be will hope to be ringing in a new year that carries forward business as usual. That must not be allowed to go down because business as usual in Amerikkka includes wanton police murder of Black people. The refusal of grand juries in Ferguson and Staten Island to indict the cops who murdered Michael Brown and Eric Garner made this clear. So the powerful, beautiful and necessary outpourings that have disrupted this society's normal routine must continue and escalate on New Year's Eve and into the New Year.

Photo: AP

We should live in a society where those who are entrusted with public safety would sooner risk their own lives than kill or injure an innocent person. But in this society, cops who brutalize and murder are given the benefit of the doubt and are almost never punished in any way for their crimes. This is illegitimate and unacceptable. It must be STOPPED, and it's up to us to stop it! On New Year's Eve, we must act in many different ways to do just that.

If you think that police murder must STOP, be out in the streets with that message on New Year's Eve. Say in a loud, clear voice—NO NEW YEAR UNDER THIS OLD SYSTEM! And—WE CAN'T BREATHE! Bring your whistles and blow them loudly. Bring your signs and banners.

And if you think that torture, that violence against women and attacks on women's rights, that attacks on immigrants and the pillaging of the environment of the planet, that U.S. wars for empire and attacks on people for who they love and how they love and more must be stopped; join us in the streets on New Year's Eve. Bring your signs and banners too. Figure out imaginative ways to say NO MORE to all these horrors.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014


A statement from Carl Dix

December 20, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Special to Revolution/

Today in America, police murder people and get away with no punishment. This happens again and again and again. But something new has also begun to happen, and people have risen up against this, in the tens of thousands, across the country. The outpourings of resistance to this wanton police murder have been beautiful, powerful, and very necessary. Our movement of resistance must broaden, becoming even more diverse, and its determination to stop police murder must be strengthened and deepened. It must continue and escalate until these horrors are really ended.

When police murder people as they did with Eric Garner and Michael Brown, it is unlawful, illegitimate and should not be tolerated in any society that anyone would want to live in.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Richard Pryor Routines...or Why Pigs Are Pigs

By Bob Avakian | December 18, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


This was first published as an article by BA over 30 years ago, and was then included in the book by BA, Reflections, Sketches & Provocations.  The piece refers to the “RW” – the Revolutionary Worker which has been renamed Revolution newspaper. It is being published again now because it remains very relevant—indeed more relevant and important than ever—in speaking to the murder of Black people and other oppressed people by police, why this keeps happening, and what can finally put an end to it.

The following is an excerpt from "Hill Street Bullshit, Richard Pryor Routines, and the Real Deal" by Bob Avakian, Chairman of the RCP. The complete essay, written in 1983, is in the book, Reflections, Sketches & Provocations by Bob Avakian.

Recently I was reading reports of police assaults on Black people and of Black people fighting against the police in Memphis and Miami. This called to mind a story I was told a while back. A rookie cop was riding in his police car with his veteran partner when a report came in that there was a Black man in the vicinity with a gun. As their car screeched around the corner, a young Black man suddenly appeared sprinting up an alley--into a dead end. "Shoot him!", the older cop screamed, "Go on, shoot him—it's free!"

"It's free!" Think about that for a second. "It's free!" In other words, here's a chance that gets a pig to sweating and salivating with anticipation—a chance to "kill a nigger" with the already provided cover that a Black man—a Black man, any Black man—was reported in the area with a gun. This is an opportunity too good to pass up: "Go on, shoot him—it's free!"

Well, in this case, the rookie was not ready for that--perhaps he was one of those rare ones who joins a police force actually believing the "serve and protect" bullshit—and that particular Black man did not die that day. But one of the most telling things about this whole incident is the fallout from it: The rookie cop had to resign. If he wasn't ready and willing—if he didn't have the proper attitude to do what his veteran partner was calling for, what came naturally to the seasoned "peace officer," what any pig in his place and in a pig's right mind would do—then there was no place for him on the force. It was he, the rookie who hadn't learned, and couldn't learn it seems, what it's all about—it was he who was the outcast and felt he had to resign...

Pigs are pigs. Of course, that's an image, a symbol—in the most literal sense they are human beings, but they are human beings with a murderer's mentality, sanctioned, disciplined, unleashed by the ruling class of society to keep the oppressed in line, through terror whenever necessary and as the "bottom line," as they like to say. Terror against the oppressed is even a special reward for "carrying out the dangerous and thankless duty" of being the "thin blue line" between "civilization on the one side and anarchy and lawlessness on the other." Think about it once again: Terror against the oppressed is not just part of the job, it's also a reward. That is one of the deeper meanings of the story at the start: "Go on, shoot him—it's free!"...

But maybe some liberals (of the "left" or "right") will object that these stories I've recounted are after all only stories, and even if we allow that they themselves are true stories, still they are only a few cases—the famous "isolated incidents" perhaps. Well, anyone who still really thinks that, or says it, has got to answer one basic question about the following Richard Pryor routine:

Cops put a hurtin' on your ass, man, you know. They really degrade you. White folks don't believe that shit, don't believe cops degrade;— "Ah, come on, those beatings, those people were resisting arrest. I'm tired of this harassment of police officers." Cause the police live in your neighborhood, see, and you be knowin' 'em as Officer Timpson. "Hello Officer Timpson, going bowling tonight? Yes, uh, nice Pinto you have, ha, ha, ha." Niggers* don't know 'em like that. See, white folks get a ticket, they pull over, "Hey, Officer, yes, glad to be of help, here you go." A nigger got to be talkin' 'bout "I AM REACH-ING INTO MY POCK-ET FOR MY LICENSE—'cause I don't wanna be no motherfuckin' accident!"

Police degrade you. I don't know, you know, it's often you wonder why a nigger don't go completely mad. No, you do. You get your shit together, you work all week, right, then you get dressed—maybe say a cat make $125 a week, get $80 if he lucky, right, and he go out, get clean, be drivin' with his old lady, goin' out to a club, and the police pull over, "Get outta the car, there was a robbery—nigger look just like you. Alright, put your hands up, take your pants down, spread your cheeks!" Now, what nigger feel like havin' fun after that? "No, let's just go home, baby." You go home and beat your kids and shit—you gonna take that shit out on somebody.

from That Nigger's* Crazy, 1974

The question is this: Why, at the crucial points of this routine, does Pryor's audience erupt in tense, knowing laughter, coupled with prolonged applause? Can it be for any other reason than the fact that Pryor has indeed captured and concentrated—with humor, higher than life, as art should be, but the stone truth, all too true, at the same time—a situation that is typical for the masses of Black people in the U.S.? Something which, if it has not happened directly to them (and the odds are pretty good that it has), is subject to happen to them tomorrow, or the next day, and has already happened to a relative or friend. To anyone who wants to defend the police, to say nothing of prettifying them, showing them as just ordinary human beings, etc., etc., ad nauseam; and even anyone who wants to raise pious doubts and petty amendments about calling them what they are, without reservation or apology; you can't get around this question: you have to confront it straight up. And don't tell me Pryor's audiences aren't a fair representation: The response will always be the same from any audience that includes a significant number of the masses of Black people, or other oppressed masses (as, in fact, is the case with the audience for Pryor's live performances).

A relevant fact here, drawn directly from "real life." I read in a recent RW, the report about the announcement by the Los Angeles District Attorney that—once again—no charges would be brought against the two pigs who beat and choked a 28-year-old Black man, Larry Morris, to death without any justification, even according to the authorities. The RW article went on to expose that "This is just the latest in more than 200 `investigations' of police murders [that is, murders of people by police] since the forming of the D.A.'s `Operation Rollout.' This program has so far endorsed the police's right to kill every time." And after everything else, we're still bound to hear from some quarters how this is just Los Angeles, where the police are known to be particularly brutal etc., etc. This really shouldn't have to be answered, but it does, so let me answer it by turning again to a Richard Pryor routine, this one from the same performance, in Washington, D.C. in 1978, as the one cited at the start of this article:

Police in L.A., man, they got a chokehold they use on motherfuckers. Do they do it here, do they choke you to death? (Voices from the audience, many voices from the audience: "Yeah!") That's some weird shit. Cause I didn't know it was a death penalty to have a parking ticket.

But for the masses of Black people in this "great land of freedom and justice for all" it can be—and it has been for hundreds, at least, every year. Of course, this kind of freedom and justice is not reserved for Black people alone in the U.S., though they are special "beneficiaries" of it. It also lashes out and ensnares millions of the masses of other oppressed nationalities, immigrants (so-called "legal" as well as so-called "illegal") and in general those who are without wealth and therefore without power, including many white people, for whom Officer Timpson is hardly a friend, either.

In short, the armed force of the bourgeois state exists for the purpose of suppressing, by force and arms, the proletariat and all those who would step out of line and challenge this "great way of life" founded on robbery and murder, not only within the U.S. itself but throughout the world. And that, simply, is why pigs are pigs, and will always be pigs—until systems that need such pigs are abolished from the earth. A hard truth—but a liberating truth.

* This material is reproduced here as it was performed by Richard Pryor at the time, including the use of the word "nigger"; this is for the sake of accuracy and not out of any disrespect for his feeling, after a trip to Africa, that he should no longer use the word "nigger" because it is dehumanizing.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Conclusion of the Opening Presentation by Bob Avakian at the November 15 Dialogue with Cornel West at Riverside Church in New York City

December 22, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


The following is what Bob Avakian had prepared as the Conclusion of his Opening Presentation at the Dialogue with Cornel West on November 15, 2014, but it includes parts beyond what was actually presented by BA at the Dialogue itself. Watch the video of the Dialogue at

What gives meaning to life, what is truly a life with a purpose? Living in this country, in this cut-throat system that plunders the whole world, you are encouraged, and constantly pulled, to be absorbed in "self." The "selfie" is indeed a fitting icon of this culture. (Often what you hear sounds like a singer warming up: me, me, me...!) For the more privileged, there is all too often the sense of being entitled to all that is provided by nature and produced by the world's people, while remaining ignorant of, or deliberately ignoring, the terrible reality of life for the great majority of humanity, and for great numbers of people within this country. You know how it goes: "We're parasitic Amuricans—we don't have time to learn about the world, we're too busy gorging ourselves on it!" (Hashtag: "Parasitic Amuricans") Or, if you're in a more desperate situation, you are driven to hustle, scramble, and scuffle to get what you can—while things work to keep you from understanding why things are the way they are, and how they could be radically different. This is the way it is under this system. This is an empty, cold, cruel way of life, lacking in deeper meaning and higher purpose.

Now, once again we see people beginning to raise their heads, to break with the normal routine, to question and resist—to stand up and rise up. The question is, where will this go—where will it be led: back within the deadly dead-end trap, the killing confines, of this system, or building toward the real solution, a revolution to get rid of this system and bring something much better into being? Human life may be short, but it can be full of meaning—the meaning we give to it. As I have put it before: "If you have had a chance to see the world as it really is, there are profoundly different roads you can take with your life. You can just get into the dog-eat-dog, and most likely get swallowed up by that while trying to get ahead in it. You can put your snout into the trough and try to scarf up as much as you can, while scrambling desperately to get more than others. Or you can try to do something that would change the whole direction of society and the whole way the world is. When you put those things alongside each other, which one has any meaning, which one really contributes to anything worthwhile? Your life is going to be about something—or it's going to be about nothing. And there is nothing greater your life can be about than contributing whatever you can to the revolutionary transformation of society and the world, to put an end to all systems and relations of oppression and exploitation and all the unnecessary suffering and destruction that goes along with them. I have learned that more and more deeply through all the twists and turns and even the great setbacks, as well as the great achievements, of the communist revolution so far, in what are really still its early stages historically."

But let me say this: I am a confirmed atheist, and am firmly convinced that what we need to bring a much better world into being, is the method and the morals of communism, not religion; yet Cornel is much closer to my heart than many atheists. WHY? Because too many atheists use their atheism to sit smugly, satisfied with the world as it is, or even use it to justify the world as it is.

With Cornel there is none of that world-weary cynicism and small-minded snarkiness that serve as a convenient cover for remaining complacent, and complicit, with injustice and the continual horrors inflicted on the masses of humanity. Cornel is a voracious intellectual with a deep appreciation for the life of the mind, but who also understands that a role and responsibility of an intellectual is to stand with the wretched of the earth and take a stand in the fight against oppression. And I would much rather walk with Cornel than with a smug atheist.

Now don’t get me wrong, there are some very good atheists—communists, humanists and others, but all too many who are justifying going along with the way things are.

The movement I envision, and am working for, is one where people like Cornel and myself can walk together on the road of revolution and emancipation—uniting in the struggle to bring about a world where there will no longer be the wretched of the earth but human beings giving ever greater expression to their humanity, in a myriad of diverse ways—and, yes, we will argue, vigorously, about how to bring this into being, even as we proceed arm-in-arm together.

As I emphasized in Away With All Gods!: "In terms of the basis of unity in the political struggle, the dividing line should never be whether or not people believe in god and are religious, but whether they are willing to unite, and can be won to unite, in ways that are objectively in the interests of the masses of people. To the degree that they do so, it is necessary to build unity with them, and to struggle with them to do so more fully and consistently, even while struggle is also carried out with them, in the ideological realm, over the question of which worldview actually corresponds to reality and will lead to emancipation." In the broadest sense, the movement we need to radically change the world is one that embraces all those who are determined to fight injustice; is marked by unity, and struggle; largeness of mind and generosity of spirit. In this light, let me end with a call which I have made before and which seems very fitting on this occasion.


Let's go on a crucial journey together—full of unity against oppression and lively struggle about the source of the problem and the solution. Pursue your own convictions—that the outrages that move you are intolerable—to their logical conclusion, and be determined not to stop until those outrages have been eliminated. And if this, as well as learning about other outrages, and ideas about how this all fits together and flows from a common source—and how it could all be ended, and something much better brought into being—leads in the direction of seeing not only the need for bold and determined resistance, but also the need for revolution and ultimately communism, then don't turn away from that because it moves you beyond your comfort zone, challenges what had been your cherished beliefs, or because of prejudices and slanders. Instead, actively seek to learn more about this revolution and its goal of communism and to determine whether it is in fact the necessary, and possible, solution. And then act accordingly.






Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Serious About Making an Actual Revolution

December 18, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


A Statement from the Revolutionary Communist Party - ON THE STRATEGY FOR REVOLUTION



CONSTITUTION For The New Socialist Republic In North America


You Don't Know What You Think You 'Know' About... The Communist Revolution and the REAL Path to Emancipation: Its History and Our Future - An Interview with Raymond Lotta

“What I can say is that this is serious. We’re taking this very seriously. And I would direct you to the website,, and Revolution newspaper, and what we get into in documents like On the Strategy for Revolution; On the Possibility of actually making revolution and winning; what the new society should be like as envisioned in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America; what we can learn from the previous experience of communist revolutions as set forward in an interview with Raymond Lotta, The Communist Revolution and the REAL Path to Emancipation: Its History and Our Future. If we’re serious—and we have to be serious—then we need to dig into all this and grapple with it. And a lot more people need to be doing this.

“We need to not just resist, though we definitely need to resist and we can’t put up with any more of this outrage any longer. But we have to go on and fight to actually create the basis to go all out and win–and put an end to this madness once and for all.”

—Bob Avakian
From “REVOLUTION & RELIGION: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion
A Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian

(Riverside Church, New York City, November 15, 2014)




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Defend Abortion Rights!
Confront the Anti-abortion Woman-haters January 22 & 24

by Sunsara Taylor | December 22, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


There’s a torrent of woman-hating in this society that rages from the frat houses to the barracks, from the board rooms to the state houses, from the detention centers to the prisons, and beyond... it manifests in gang rapes and a violent porn-saturated culture... it claims the lives of nearly four women each day by abusive “partners”... it shames women and girls about their bodies and sexuality... it bullies people who won’t cram into constrictive boxes of “male” and “female” or whose love defies oppressive heterosexist norms... it imprisons women who defend themselves, shackles them during child birth, and allows guards to rape them behind bars.

An extreme, aggressive, and cutting edge of this torrent is the fascist assault on abortion—and even birth control. Having a child can be a wonderful thing. But forcing women to have children against their will is a form of enslavement. Forced motherhood drives women into poverty, traps them in abusive relationships, foreclose their dreams and their potential contributions to society. Worse, this woman-hating is backed by the state. Hundreds of laws are being hammered into place, closing abortion clinics, driving women to dangerous extremes, and creating legal precedents that are extremely difficult to reverse.

On January 22 in Washington, DC and on January 24 in San Francisco, hundreds of thousands will take part in Christian fascist marches against abortion and birth control. They will spew their shame and vicious lies about “women’s place.” They will strut and bray about their victories in slashing and hacking away at women’s lives in 2014. They will pump up their foot-soldiers to even more violently bludgeon women’s rights in 2015.

We say NO MORE! No more rape jokes, porn culture, gang rape, virginity cults, fascist laws, clinic closures, shattered lives, shackled births, battered friends, forced motherhood, stalking, street-harassment, shaming, objectifying, silencing, victim-blaming, groping, or any of the countless ways women are daily demeaned and degraded!

We will NOT be silent in the face of hatred. We will NOT stay home as anti-abortion, woman-hating fascists parade through the streets. We will stand up for abortion rights and defeat the war on women.

This year, WE FIGHT BACK!







Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

From A World To Win News Service

Tuğçe Albayrak—A heroic and inspirational act

December 22, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


15 December 2014. A World to Win News Service. In the bathroom at a McDonald’s in Offenbach, Germany on the evening of 15 November, two teenage girls were screaming for help. A 22-year-old German-born student of Turkish origin, Tuğçe Albayrak, heard their cries and alone rushed to their aid. She found several men harassing the two young girls and stopped them.

Later when Tuğçe left the McDonald’s, one of the young men took revenge on her in the parking lot. He beat her over the head with a baseball bat or other very hard object. She fell unconscious to the ground. A young man who was taken into custody initially admitted striking her on the head now refuses to say more.

The story of Tuğçe’s heroic act, covered by international media and many blogs, touched the hearts of hundreds of thousands of people throughout the world. With tears and anger, people of all backgrounds and ages from cities across Germany poured into the streets in demonstrations of tribute to her. Candlelight vigils were held at the hospital where she lay in a coma for two weeks before doctors pronounced her brain dead. Her parents decided to remove her from life support on 28 November, her 23rd birthday.

Demonstrators in Berlin hold photos of Tugce Albayrak, November 30, 2014

November 30, 2014: Demonstrators in Berlin hold photos of Tuğçe Albayrak. AP photo

In an effort to burnish its image, McDonald’s took out a full page ad in Bild, one of Germany’s largest selling newspapers, in Turkish and German: “We mourn the loss of an extraordinary woman who showed courage and lost her life... In this moment, our thoughts are with the family of Tuğçe Albayrak, we wish them strength in this difficult time.” Cynically, McDonald’s added it condemns any kind of violence, “especially in and around our restaurants”.

In the face of this outpouring from people across the country, the German president was obliged to make a public statement to her family. “Our entire country mourns with you. Where other people looked away, Tuğçe showed exemplary courage.”

The hypocrisy of this statement is stunning. The oppression of people from non-German backgrounds living in Germany has a long history rooted in German imperialism and the structural relations embedded within. “Guest workers” from Turkey who played a huge role in German prosperity after WWII have never been welcomed in the closed society that Germany is.

The structure of oppressive social relations in German society is not only anti-immigrant but also anti-woman. Traditional public opinion scorns a working mother as a Rabenmutter, a heartless “raven mother” who should be at home caring for children rather than pushing them out of their nest. Early child care and schools are often organised so that the hours are inflexible, making it difficult for women to work at more than part-time jobs. Alongside this aspect of patriarchal relations, Germany is home to the biggest brothels in Europe. In fact, the county has been called one giant brothel, where more than one million men pay for sex every day. So women out in the evening unaccompanied by men are considered fair game for other men to prey on them. The young man who killed Tuğçe to defend male “right” may not have been born in Germany, but he learned society’s lessons very well.

Tuğçe Albayrak broke through some of these social constraints in many ways. Aspiring to teach high school youth, she was an excellent student with a full life before her. When she rescued the two teenage girls, all that was snuffed out because she refused to look the other way.

Now almost 200,000 people have signed an online petition to get the German government to honour her bravery by awarding her the National Order of Merit. What is it in this situation that has touched people so deeply?

By many “good German” standards Tuğçe was not one of them, yet she defended one of “theirs.” She broke out of the stultifying societal confines of how people are supposed to think and act: “mind your own business,” “keep your head down” and “look out for number one.” She dared to stand up to the male privilege that society tells men is their birthright.

That so many people have been moved by Tuğçe shows that the oppressive, narrow-minded and suffocating culture that characterizes not just German society but Western countries in general is not inherent in human nature. It arises from and helps perpetuate a system that people are forced to live under. That so many people were inspired by an act that provided a glimpse of a different way of thinking and being shows what could be unleashed if people saw the real possibility of stepping out of the confines of the old ways to help bring into being a world of mutual respect free of all relations of domination and exploitation.

Tuğçe’s heroic act was inspiring and forward-looking, a manifesto of non-accommodation to the world as it presently is.


A World to Win News Service is put out by A World to Win magazine, a political and theoretical review inspired by the formation of the Revolutionary Internationalist Movement, the embryonic center of the world's Marxist-Leninist-Maoist parties and organizations.





Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Points of Orientation in the Wake of Events on December 20, 2014

December 21, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Two New York City police officers were shot and killed on Saturday, December 20.  The police have stated that they identified and chased the assailant and that the alleged assailant killed himself in the subway.  This has become a major news story and has been seized on to carry forward a major political attack on the movement to stop police murders.

In evaluating what is going on, and without commenting on the incident at hand, people need to be clear on some key underlying truths.  First, as has been brought to light through research, police and other security personnel in the U.S. kill someone nearly every day, and very many of these victims are unarmed and not even alleged to be committing a crime.  New York has an entire roster of people, mainly Black and Latino, murdered by police while unarmed—this includes Amadou Diallo, murdered as he stood in his doorway reaching for his wallet; Patrick Dorismond, who told an undercover narcotics officer to get out of his face; Anthony Baez, whose crime was that his football hit a police car; Malcolm Ferguson, slain days after participating in a protest against the exoneration of the pigs who murdered Diallo; Eleanor Bumpurs, a grandmother supposedly resisting eviction; Nicholas Heyward Jr., a 13-year-old boy playing with a toy gun; Ramarley Graham, murdered in his bathroom by a rampaging pig; Sean Bell, Akai Gurley, Eric Garner, Kimani Gray, Gidone Busch, and many many others.  In fact, you can travel to the house of Margarita Rosario in the Bronx where an entire side of her house is a mural containing the names of these stolen lives, just for New York City—including the names of her son and nephew, Anthony Rosario and Hilton Vega, murdered by NYPD officers as they lay face down.

This speaks to the reality of the racist and murderous brutality of the police and the whole apparatus of repression of this system, which is widespread, continual, and systematic, and which is not simply a particular feature of the NYPD but is characteristic of police and the "injustice system" in the country as a whole, in the service of a brutally oppressive system, a system which has white supremacy built into its very foundation and structure.

Second, at long last, after yet two more unarmed Black men were murdered by police and their killers were not even indicted, a powerful movement for justice has arisen.  When this movement did not “peter out,” to paraphrase NYPD chief Bratton, governments all over the country took measures to suppress this.  In New York, these measures included lawsuits from Mayor de Blasio demanding the ability to sweep up, detain and arrest demonstrators en masse without warning; hysterical “trials by media” of someone accused of throwing a garbage can during a protest and others attempting to defend a protester against attack and arrest, right down to “Wanted” front-page pictures in tabloids of the people alleged to have defended a protester and urgings to the readers to turn them in; and more and more arrests of demonstrators; etc.  (It should also be noted that for all the talk of a new, more “permissive” NYPD, hundreds were nevertheless arrested for exercising their rights in the early days of the protests.)

Third, this event also happens against the backdrop of intense antagonism among different sections of the ruling class and government apparatus, especially between the police themselves and sections of the bourgeoisie supporting a continued “free hand” for the pigs, and the camp of de Blasio, which has made a show of (supposedly) discontinuing some elements of the former repressive package while maintaining and intensifying others.  Even these essentially cosmetic changes have been too much for some in the ruling class.   These conflicts have also featured incidents to which there seems very likely to be more than meets the eye, and the utilization of leaks to the media to discredit and/or effectively convict people who have gotten in the way of powerful forces. 

In this atmosphere, given the NYPD’s proven record of lying (there are currently scandals in New York of cops framing scores and perhaps hundreds of innocent people), frame-ups (the notorious case of the Central Park 5), and setups (the police whistleblower Frank Serpico in the 1970s nearly lost his life to his “brother police”), nobody should believe any story that comes from the NYPD nor take at face value anything out of the mouth of anyone connected to the police department.

Now this incident is being used to distort the character of this protest movement and to nip it in the bud.  Let us return to the facts: the police kill hundreds of people a year, and are rarely if ever even threatened with being brought to trial.  Let us dig into a deeper fact: these murders grow out of a system of white supremacy which has been bred into the bone and psyche of this rotten society since Day One and which, while it has morphed into different forms over the centuries to meet the changing needs and circumstances of those who have ruled America, has never been eradicated.  Today the police departments have in large part replaced the patrollers of slavery days and the lynch mobs of Jim Crow—but the function is the same. 

Given all that, the protests that have been going on, and the new protests that are being planned, should not and must not cease and must indeed deepen and grow even more broad, diverse and determined.  People must not allow themselves to be thrown on the defensive.  Further: the serious repressive moves by the de Blasio/Bratton administration must be strongly opposed, and the attempts now by de Blasio to turn everyone in New York into a snitch should absolutely NOT be tolerated.

Finally, without in any way commenting on this incident, let the following be noted: We are building a movement for revolution—a revolution which, in order to have a real possibility of winning, would need to involve millions of people who have become convinced of the need for this revolution and who, with the emergence of a deep-going revolutionary crisis in society, would be determined to fight to carry out such a revolutionary struggle and fight to win.  All of the work we are doing is aimed at contributing to the development of such a revolutionary movement, guided by this strategic understanding, orientation and approach.  If people want to learn more about our strategy for revolution—as well as why we think such a revolution is urgently needed by the masses of humanity, and why and how it is possible—they should further check out this website 






Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

What is the importance of the actions that have been called for on New Year's Eve, from the standpoint of actually making revolution—at the soonest possible time?

December 20, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


If you really want a revolution, you have to start from what we need to get one. You need a crisis in the ruling class and government, in which the powers-that-be are fighting among themselves and the advocates of reforms find themselves scrambling and on the defensive; you need masses of people, in their millions, finding the old way of living intolerable and willing to put everything on the line to end it; and you need a powerful revolutionary organization, with wide influence and deep roots and an experienced and scientifically-oriented core, able to give leadership to all this.

We don’t have all that today. But we do have a huge social eruption around a contradiction that is at the very heart of this society: the oppression of Black people, and for which the ruling class has no fundamental answer. We do have a situation which has “[compelled] many people to question and to resist what they usually accept,” (from A Statement from the Revolutionary Communist Party: ON THE STRATEGY FOR REVOLUTION) and in which people are much more open to hearing and thinking about and taking up the revolutionary line, the revolutionary analysis of the problem and the solution, and what to do about all that right now. We do have a vanguard which does have a fundamental answer—a solution—to this and all the other horrors and outrages of imperialism, a way to not only resist them but to actually MAKE a revolution, and the orientation to make the most of situations like this FOR revolution. And we do have a situation in which “nobody can say exactly what the conscious initiative of the revolutionaries might be capable of producing, in reacting upon the objective situation at any given time—in part because nobody can predict all the other things that all the different forces in the world will be doing.” (From Making Revolution and Emancipating Humanity, by Bob Avakian. This work is available as part of the Revolution pamphlet Revolution and Communism: A Foundation and Strategic Orientation. The citation is from p. 40.)

What we CAN say is that revolutionaries must work to push, and keep pushing, this situation as far as it can actually go, working along the lines laid out in the oft-reprinted “Some Principles for Building a Movement for Revolution,” by Bob Avakian (BAsics 3:30). This sheds important light on how revolutionaries should approach the actions being called for on New Year’s Eve. These actions should be as large and powerful as possible, rallying people who have been in the streets during this whole past period and rallying many more beyond them—people who have been inspired by all that, people who feel that they too “can’t breathe,” people who want to step out and step forward. Indeed, these demonstrations should, as Carl Dix put forth in his original call, be a time when people who are fighting on many different fronts to STOP the various outrages of this system all pour into the streets as well, around the slogan “No New Year With This Old System!” Revolutionaries should lead in reaching out very, very broadly to bring people to this.

At the same time, these demonstrations on New Year’s Eve should be a time when the fact that there IS a way out of this madness—that there is not only an understanding why the old system keeps doing what it does but a) what could be put in its place which could enable humanity to begin to overcome and transcend these horrors, and b) how this current system could be defeated for real in an actual revolution—is very much infused into all this. It should be a time when the leadership for this revolution—the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA and its leader, Bob Avakian—get much more widely known, in various ways, including through the propagation of the recent dialogue between Bob Avakian and Cornel West (REVOLUTION AND RELIGION: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion—A Dialogue Between Cornel West and Bob Avakian), as well as through broad distribution of Revolution and promotion of the website It should be a time when the organized forces of the revolution dramatically and coherently project themselves and draw others, on the spot, towards and closer to these organizations.

In short, revolutionaries must view this from the vantage point of “Some Principles,” and on that basis “carry out work which, together with the development of the objective situation, can transform the political terrain so that the legitimacy of the established order, and the right and ability of the ruling class to rule, is called into question, in an acute and active sense, throughout society; so that resistance to this system becomes increasingly broad, deep and determined; so that the ‘pole’ and the organized vanguard force of revolutionary communism is greatly strengthened; and so that, at the decisive time, this advanced force is able to lead the struggle of millions, and tens of millions, to make revolution.”

It is from that framework that plans should be made and goals set, and progress toward those concrete plans and goals consistently evaluated.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Stop Mass Incarceration Network NYC Press Conference: "No New Year Under This Old System. We Can't Breathe!"

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


The Stop Mass Incarceration Network (SMIN) held a press conference on Tuesday, December 23 on the steps of City Hall of the City of New York to call for "Rocking in the New Year with Resistance to Police Murder," under the theme of “NO NEW YEAR UNDER THIS OLD SYSTEM. WE CAN'T BREATHE!”

SMIN announced activities to be held in New York City on New Year’s Eve—with a call to deliver the message with the following demands:

Justice for Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Akai Gurley and All Victims of Police Murder!

Police Murder Must Stop!

Speakers at the press conference included: Carl Dix, co-founder of the Stop Mass Incarceration Network with Cornel West, and representative of the Revolutionary Communist Party; Travis Morales, Steering Committee, NYC Stop Mass Incarceration Network; Richard Marini, World Can’t Wait; Sumumba Sobukwe, OWS/Occu-Evolve; B.M. Marcus, community organizer from Brooklyn and activist with SMIN.

Behind speakers at the press conference, people stood holding a long roll of yellow police tape that stretched for nearly 100 feet—with the names of Black and Latino men killed by the police in New York City and across the country.

Travis Morales addressed the call by NYC Mayor de Blasio and others for protests against murder by police to be put aside right now, saying: "Well, I will tell you this, the NYPD and police around this country have not put aside their murdering of our people.... There’s been no moratorium on the police murdering our people with impunity. We can’t back down.” He also spoke to how officials and the media have characterized chants calling cops racist and comparing the NYPD to the KKK as "hurtful, hateful and immoral," saying: “My question would be: What is it about those chants that’s not true?”

Morales called on people to join SMIN in bringing in the New Year with resistance: “We are calling on people to gather at 9 o’clock on New Year’s Eve at Union Square and then march at 10 o’clock to Times Square to take this message to the world, to the people of the world—rock in the New Year with resistance to police murder. And all the thousands and tens of thousands of people who have been in the streets, who have been protesting, who have been demanding justice for Michael Brown and Eric Garner, all those thousands and tens of thousands need to be in Times Square on New Years eve, raising their voices, raising their signs, raising their banners, demanding justice for Michael Brown, justice for Eric Garner, justice for all the victims of police murder—‘Indict, Convict and Send These Killer Cops to Jail'... As long as these murders continue we will continue to be out in the street demanding justice and demanding these murders stop.”

Carl Dix said, "They have no right to silence our voice. We must be heard....You got no right to tell us when, how and whether we can protest.”

Dix also talked about the need to continue resistance: “There has been a seemingly never-ending series of people being murdered by the happens again and again and again. And these cops are not punished for these crimes. But then something beautiful, powerful and necessary happened, beginning in Ferguson and spreading around the country when people stood up to say NO MORE to this.

“Now we’re being told ease up, step back—'how about a moratorium?' NO! Our stance should be, as long as these murders by police happen, as long as the criminal justice system refuses to indict and convict these killer cops, then our resistance must go on, business as usual must not go on.”

See the whole press conference here.

For more on SMIN, go to




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

This Must Stop Now!

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


12/24: In the past two days, during a period when New York Mayor Bill de Blasio called on people to not protest police brutality and murder (a call echoed by every media outlet in the country): A prosecutor in Houston and a grand jury in Milwaukee refused to bring charges against police who murdered two Black men. And late last night in Berkeley, MO a police officer killed an 18-year-old Black man. Reports are that hundreds of people responded on the spot in outrage. Also, last night, hundreds of people defied the Mayor and protested police brutality in New York City, and Carl Dix and Travis Morales called for protests on New Year's Eve at a press conference that got wide coverage:

Rock in the New Year With Resistance to Police Murder!






Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

What IS an Actual Revolution?

December 22, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


An actual revolution is a lot more than a protest. An actual revolution requires that millions of people get involved, in an organized way, in a determined fight to dismantle this state apparatus and system and replace it with a completely different state apparatus and system, a whole different way of organizing society, with completely different objectives and ways of life for the people. Fighting the power today has to help build and develop and organize the fight for the whole thing, for an actual revolution. Otherwise we’ll be protesting the same abuses generations from now!




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

No Christmas Eve as Usual in Wake of Police Killing of Antonio Martin

December 25, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

Photos from the vigils in Berkeley, Missouri, December 25, 2014, at the spot where Antonio Martin was gunned down 19 hours earlier by police. All photos: Special to

Vigil for Antonio Martin in Berkeley, MO December 25, 2014

Vigil for Antonio Martin in Berkeley, MO December 25, 2014

Vigil for Antonio Martin in Berkeley, MO December 25, 2014

Vigil for Antonio Martin in Berkeley, MO December 25, 2014

People gathered for a Christmas Eve vigil at the spot where Antonio Martin was gunned down 19 hours earlier by a cop in Berkeley, Missouri, next door to Ferguson where Michael Brown was murdered by cop Darren Wilson in August. 50 people joined members of Antonio’s family to construct a memorial to honor Antionio’s life on the side of the gas station where he was murdered.

The Mobil gas station was the scene of a powerful outpouring of rage the night before. Within a couple hours of Antonio’s murder, 300 people, including many defiant youth from the surrounding neighborhoods, had rushed to the scene and clashed with riot police.

After the vigil and memorial building had concluded, protesters hit the streets and marched to Highway 170, bringing holiday traffic to a halt on the southbound lanes. The march exited 170 and then shut down major streets in Berkeley. People condemned the continuing police murders in St. Louis and around the country, chanting “We can’t breathe!” and “Who shuts shit down? We shut shit down!” Protesters challenged backed-up motorists to forget about the holiday inconvenience and get out in the streets.

Demonstrators returned to the gas station, where confrontations broke out between protesters and the lines of riot police. Authorities mobilized County Police and Missouri Highway Patrol, as well as police from nearby towns. Several protesters were arrested and others were maced. Not only youth but older people from the neighborhood came out and were on the scene. One older man spoke with pride about how youth he knew stood up to righteously and militantly to the police the night before.

Later that evening, 75 people held a Christmas Eve vigil at a prominent cathedral in St. Louis. This began at 11 p.m., marking 24 hours from the time when Antonio was gunned down. Up the steps at the church doors stood a line of riot cops, and riot cops also lined the sidewalk where people passed by to come to the vigil. People sang and spoke out. One young man explained he came right from a Christmas Eve gathering at home, pointing out the pajamas he was wearing. He read a list of people murdered by police in the U.S. in 2014.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Antonio Martin, 18—the Latest Black Man Killed by Police in ameriKKKa

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


The role of the police is not to serve and protect the people. It is to serve and protect the system that rules over the people. To enforce the relations of exploitation and oppression, the conditions of poverty, misery and degradation into which the system has cast people and is determined to keep people in. The law and order the police are about, with all of their brutality and murder, is the law and the order that enforces all this oppression and madness.

BAsics 1:24

Download Tweetable jpg.

12/24/14. Late last night, a policeman shot and killed Antonio Martin, an 18-year-old Black man, in Berkeley, Missouri—a predominantly Black suburb of St. Louis just a few miles from Ferguson.

Details of what happened are unknown, and the police account should not be taken as fact What IS a fact is that yet another Black man was killed by police, that there is an epidemic of police murder and terror, and that it has to STOP.

Immediately after the killing, a crowd gathered and different forms of outrage erupted. The images in this slideshow reflect the horror, pain, and righteous anger in the moments after the killing, including a die-in on the spot. Other forms of protest went on into the night.


  • Berkeley, Missouri, evening of December 23, 2014. Photo Special to
  • Berkeley, Missouri, evening of December 23, 2014. Photo Special to
  • Berkeley, Missouri, evening of December 23, 2014. Photo Special to
  • Berkeley, Missouri, evening of December 23, 2014. Photo Special to
  • Berkeley, Missouri, evening of December 23, 2014. Photo Special to
  • Berkeley, Missouri, evening of December 23, 2014. Photo Special to
1 2 3 4 5 6





Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Outrage in Milwaukee After Yet Another Killer Cop Walks

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

Dontre Hamilton was executed by police for being mentally ill and sleeping in a park while Black. That was in late April of 2014. On Monday, December 22, the “independent investigation” of this blatant murder totally exonerated the pig. (see box for more background). The Coalition for Justice in Milwaukee, a group which, along with others, has demonstrated many times over this, immediately hit the street, and called for a protest and march the following day at 5 p.m.

The protest started at Red Arrow Park, right in downtown Milwaukee, and the very place where Dontre was shot down. In the face of declarations by the powers-that-be that the people should stand down, the marchers were defiant and unrepentant in their demand for justice. Before too long, it grew from a couple dozen to about 500 people. It was led by Nate Hamilton, the brother of Dontre, who had held a press conference on Monday and laid out in uncompromising terms that this struggle is not over, and called out the cruelty and hypocrisy of the justice system. "My family, we've cried too long. As a people, we're done crying when injustice comes. We're not going to cover up injustice with our tears. We're not going to be laid back and stay sheltered from justice, we deserve justice. (See video of press conference.)

Protest against the official decision not to charge the cop who killed Dontre Hamilton, Milwaukee, December 23

Protest against the official decision not to charge the cop who killed Dontre Hamilton, Milwaukee, December 23. Photo: Special to

Nate Hamilton led chants and unified the crowd. About 50 posters saying “Ferguson is Everywhere! Stop Police Brutality and Murder.” were hungrily taken up. Two hundred fliers calling for “Rock in the New Year with Resistance to Police Murder” were distributed.

From the park, the protestors surged into the street, a six-lane boulevard, and took over the whole thing. The crowd was mainly young and a mix of Black and white youth, including college students, with local Black youth from the neighborhood. As we marched the crowd chanted; “Cops in my hood, ain’t no good, cops in your hood, ain’t no good; who do you trust? Not the po-lice”; “Indict, convict, send the killer cops to jail. The whole damn system is guilty as hell!”; “I believe, we will win” (while jumping up and down); “Turn it up, don’t turn it down, we’re doing it for Dontre now!”; “No Justice, No Compromise.” All the cops could do was escort the march, which wound through downtown until reaching the arena where the NBA Milwaukee Bucks were about to play. The bulk of the crowd linked arms in front of the two main entrances to the arena. The arriving basketball fans had to circle the arena for a side entrance. For some reason, the police decided not to arrest people.

Back at the park, family members had a "speak bitterness" about the police. One local activist minister declared that "THIS is the new normal," referring to the people in the streets refusing to accept the murder of another Black youth. Throughout the park the chant arose, “Whose park?” And the response “Dontre’s park!” Ties were forged for the Stop Mass Incarceration Network, and many Revolution newspapers and Bob Avakian/Cornel West Dialogue pluggers were distributed.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Houston: OUTRAGE! Another Murdering Pig Walks Free!

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


December 23, 2014

Last January a Houston Police Department pig murdered Jordan Baker in Acres Homes. Now, just two days before Christmas, a Harris County Grand Jury ruled that no crime would be charged against the murdering cop. This is bullshit, and it must not stand!

How many times are these cops going to get away with murdering people, especially with murdering young Black and Latino men?

Jordan Baker was unarmed. He was riding his bike through the neighborhood where he lived. And this murdering cop demanded to see Jordan's ID. The cops claim Jordan charged the killer cop, and that Jordan “matched the description” of people who supposedly had robbed local stores – because he was wearing a black hoodie.

How many times are these pigs going to run this kind of bullshit? Once again, an unarmed Black man is gunned down by a cop. Once again, the “prosecutor” presents a case aimed at letting the killer cop walk. Once again, a grand jury lets the cop go. According to the police's own records, 121 people were shot by HPD from 2008 to 2012. Not a single cop was charged with anything for these crimes.

Like Janet Baker, Jordan Baker's mother, said about the cop’s story: “I don’t believe that’s what occurred. I think that’s him trying to justify the outcome of what happened.”

A recent statement by Carl Dix of the Revolutionary Communist Party put things straight up: “Today in America, police murder people and get away with no punishment. This happens again and again and again. But something new has also begun to happen, and people have risen up against this, in the tens of thousands, across the country. The outpourings of resistance to this wanton police murder have been beautiful, powerful, and very necessary. Our movement of resistance must broaden, becoming even more diverse, and its determination to stop murder by police must be strengthened and deepened. It must continue and escalate until these horrors are really ended.

“When police murder people as they did with Eric Garner and Michael Brown, it is unlawful, illegitimate and should not be tolerated in any society that anyone would want to live in.”

The murder by police of Jordan Baker must not be tolerated. ALL MURDER BY POLICE MUST STOP, and there must be Justice for Jordan Baker! Now is the time to carry the struggle against police brutality and murder by police higher, and bring more people into this fight. Now is the time to get serious about stopping this shit, and to get organized into organizations determined to make that happen.

Get with the Stop Mass Incarceration Network, join in and help organize their activities to end murder and brutality by police, help get its message out through all of society. Check out, and get with the people building a movement for actual revolution to get rid of the system that feasts upon unending suffering for humanity such as murder by police – a movement to emancipate all of humanity.

PROTEST – Friday, December 26th @ 1pm
Rally at HPD Headquarters, 1200 Travis, Houston, TX

PROTEST – Monday, December 29th @ 3:30pm
Harris County DA's Office, 1201 Franklin, Houston, TX
Meet at 1:30pm SHAPE Community Center/Harambee Bldg.,
3903 Almeda, to march to the protest.

#JordansLifeStillMatters      #FergusonTX




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Statement by The Coalition for Justice on the Refusal to Press Charges Against the Cop Who Killed Dontre Hamilton

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Editors’ Note: The following was sent to in response to the decision on December 21 not to bring charges against the cop who killed Dontre Hamilton. On April 30 this year, Milwaukee cop Christopher Manney shot Dontre Hamilton 14 times and killed him after reportedly getting a complaint from workers at a Starbucks about a man sleeping in a park.


For Official Release by The Coalition For Justice:

To Milwaukee and Our Country,

The decision released today by Milwaukee’s District Attorney John Chisholm is in no uncertain terms an affirmation that the justice system of our city, state, and country has once again failed. There is no justification that can be provided that will allow us to believe that this officer operated within the law when the initial meeting between Dontre Hamilton and Christopher Manney originated by an unconstitutional pat down that violated Dontre’s basic/fundamental rights as a citizen of this country and as a human being.

Your justice system has once again proven that black people continue to be seen as nothing more than 3/5ths human, and property that can be destroyed and/or terminated at the whim of officers that were taught to view black skin as a threat long before they ever received their gun and badge. It is our belief that there can be numerous “outside investigative agencies” and “experts” who review cases such as this; however, as long as the criminal justice system is based on practices, principals, and polices, that subordinate and denigrate groups of people based on race, no true justice will ever prevail.

The fact remains that Dontre Hamilton was racially and criminally targeted because he was Black man, sleeping in a public park. We feel that when rudimentary rights such as resting become illegal for the people of this country, that we have truly lost our way, and veered off on a slippery slope that will justify more unmerited murders such as the one that took place in Red Arrow Park on April 30, 2014.

You have therefore left the members of this community no other alternatives than to stand up, protest, and take the justice that was rightfully ours at birth. There is no justice. So there can be no peace or compromise.

Signed With Disdain For Your Corrupt System,

The Coalition For Justice




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Check it out: "Enough Is Enough" by Edwidge Danticat

December 24, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader

I want to strongly encourage readers of to read, reflect on, and share a wrenching essay in the New Yorker, “Enough Is Enough,” by Edwidge Danticat (November 16, 2014).  Edwidge Danticat is a writer who moved to the U.S. from Haiti at the age of 12, and in the past two decades has become beloved worldwide for her novels about the Haitian people and works of nonfiction. Her work has received honors ranging from the American Book Award to Oprah's Book Club.

Written on the heels of the grand jury refusing to indict the cop who murdered Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO, “Enough Is Enough” draws on Edwidge Danticat’s life experience as a Haitian immigrant witnessing police brutality in Haiti and in the U.S.A., and her participation in the struggle against that. She takes readers back to the eruption of protest almost twenty years ago, in response to the sexual assault by the NYPD on Abner Louima  and the NYPD murder of Amadou Diallo—a Guinean immigrant who was shot at forty-one times when he reached for his wallet.

As I read the article, I wondered how anyone could not ask, now, what has changed!? And what will it take to not have this happen over and over?

Reflecting on the protest chant, “Whose streets, our streets,” Edwidge Danticat poses: “The streets were never ours to begin with, because on these same streets our sons and brothers, fathers and uncles were, and still are, prey.”

She concludes by quoting an opinion piece Abner Louima wrote in 2007: “Enough is enough.”





Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Furor Over Canceling The Interview

Global Mega Thugs Rail at Supposed North Korean Hackers

December 22, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

Have you heard about the biggest human rights outrage on the planet right now?

Am I referring to the gruesome facts—censored and whitewashed as they were—revealed in the Senate torture report on the massive, sadistic torture inflicted on people seized around the world after 9/11? No, not that. The 2+ million people in the U.S. locked down in prisons—the highest rate of incarceration in the world? No. The fact that over and over and over again Black people are shot and killed for no reason and the police who kill them walk free? No again. The global epidemic of rape and violence against women? That’s not it.

Ted Alexandro-All you Need to Know

The big “outrage” that is eliciting scathing denunciations from ruling class public opinion-making machinery and indignant demands for retaliation is that hackers—who the FBI claims are associated with North Korea—reportedly broke into computers at Sony Pictures and released data embarrassing to Sony. Personal information about people who work with Sony was also reportedly made public. In the wake of the incident, Sony cancelled the theatrical release of a movie called The Interview.

Barack Obama threatened to respond with some kind of action against North Korea “in a place and time and manner that we choose.” He added, ominously, “It is not something that I will announce here today at a press conference.” And Obama indignantly declared: “We cannot have a society in which some dictator someplace can start imposing censorship here in the United States.”

After which, Obama should have added: “Only WE—the rulers of the USA—can hack into everyone’s email, impose censorship in the United States and beyond, and torture or assassinate anyone who says or does anything we don’t like anywhere else in the world, when it suits OUR interests.”

At this point, there is no serious or scientific basis to say who was behind all this. North Korea denied involvement and offered to conduct a joint investigation with the U.S. into who was responsible. The North Korean government statement said, “We have a way to prove that we have nothing to do with the case without resorting to torture, as what the CIA does.”

* * *

The Interview, according to press reports, is a “comedy” about the CIA enlisting a couple gossip reporters to help blow up the head of North Korea. There is nothing positive about the small-time exploiters who rule North Korea, but anyone who knows anything about the real history of the USA will have a sense as to why a movie about the CIA assassinating the ruler of another country might be taken as a serious threat.

The U.S. has an unparalleled record of attempting to assassinate, assassinating, or arranging for the assassination of political figures that get in the way of its global networks of exploitation and oppression. Look up CIA attempts to kill Fidel Castro in Cuba. Look up the U.S. role in the assassination of Patrice Lumumba in Congo. Or the role of the CIA in the coup that overthrew and killed Salvador Allende in Chile.


Had the people who made The Interview aimed the plot and message in another direction—like at the United States—they might have ended up with a lot more problems than their movie going straight to video-on-demand. In 2011, Barack Obama ordered U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaki assassinated without trial or any due process for producing what was repeatedly characterized in the U.S. accounts of his assassination as “anti-American propaganda.” Not only was Anwar al-Awlaki assassinated (not just censored, or banned, but assassinated) for this, two weeks later, U.S. drones assassinated his 16-year-old American son Abdulrahman, who had no connection at all to his father’s propaganda activities.

If you’re living in the USA, you’re living in the country that became the world’s sole superpower in part by incinerating 200,000 Japanese civilians at the end of World War 2 and after that, bombed every building of two stories or more in the north of Korea in the Korean War and where a U.S. general called for bombing North Vietnam “into the Stone Age.” You’re living in a country that has installed regimes that have slaughtered millions of people, from Chile to Iran to Vietnam to Indonesia. These regimes imposed draconian censorship of dissident cultural expression, including the murder of Chilean musician Victor Jara by the CIA-installed regime after the 1974 coup in that country. Don’t believe me? Look any of this up and you’ll find this is only the lightest scratch on the surface of what the U.S. has done to people around the world. I’m sure would be interested in hearing what you find. (Editors’ note: send to

Whatever the real story behind the hacking of Sony, U.S. accusations of North Korean bullying are absurd and obscene hypocrisy. They come from, and serve, enforcing a world of slums, sweatshops, and environmental devastation enforced with violence. And nothing justifies enlisting as a cheerleading chump for these chauvinist threats by the U.S., under any pretext.





Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Selma and Orange Is the New Black Casts: “I Can’t Breathe”

December 27, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


At the New York premiere of the film Selma on Sunday, December 14, many cast members and co-writer/director Ava DuVernay wore “I Can’t Breathe” T-shirts over their red-carpet suits and gowns. Cast members David Oyelowo, E. Roger Mitchell, Wendell Pierce, Omar Dorsey, John Lavelle, Stephan James, Kent Faulcon, Lorraine Toussaint, Andre Holland, Tessa Thompson and Colman Domingo also did the “hands up, don’t shoot” gesture in honor of Michael Brown. The day before Pierce, best known for his roles as "Bunk" on The Wire and as Antoine Batiste on Treme, had marched in the streets of New York City with thousands of others. His Wire co-star Michael Kenneth Williams ("Omar," and also "Chalky" on Boardwalk Empire) also wore the shirt on the red carpet.

See a Youtube of actors and others at the NYC premiere of Selma talking about the protests against murders by police.



On December 13, when 25,000 people in New York City were marching in the streets to protest the police murder of Michael Brown, Eric Garner and other Black youth all over the USA, Vicky Jeudy, who plays Janae Watson on the Netflix series Orange is the New Black, posted a photo (see below) of members of the show’s cast holding “I/We Can’t Breathe” signs and doing “hands up, don’t shoot.”


"We can't breathe"




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Yet Another Young Black Man Killed by Police in Houston Area

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Carlton Wayne Smith with his mother, Kathey Kelley, two days before he was killed by a cop in Texas City on December 26

Carlton Wayne Smith with his mother, Kathey Kelley, two days before he was killed by a cop in Texas City on December 26.

Carlton Wayne (Chimmy) Smith, 20 years old, was shot and killed outside a nightclub in Texas City, south of Houston, in the early morning hours of December 26. Smith and others had been at a Christmas night party at the nightclub.

Police claimed Carlton Smith had a gun and was shooting at people leaving the lounge, then pointed the gun at police who arrived. Various witnesses at the scene dispute that. Several people said, according to the Galveston County Daily News, that “Smith had taken the gun away from another person, who had been shooting into the air, and was holding it with no ill intent.” Others said that “he may have been holding the gun, but there was another woman who shot in the air to break up the fighting” (there had reportedly been a scuffle inside and outside the nightclub).

What is certain is that moments after police arrived at the scene, a cop shot and killed Carlton Smith. Some witnesses said Carlton Smith was shot in the back, not (as police allege) as he faced a cop and pointed a gun at him. A report on a Corpus Christi TV station said that a nurse on the scene was prevented from assisting Carlton as he lay bleeding to death on the pavement. Smith’s mother, Kathey Kelley, told the Galveston County Daily News that she learned about what happened to her son from her sister, and that the police would not even let her identify the body.

The Galveston News reported that many people in the crowd of more than 100 “threw rocks and bottles at police officers after the shooting.”

This latest killing by police comes just a few days after a grand jury decision not to indict a Houston cop who murdered unarmed Jordan Baker in January 2014 (see “Houston: OUTRAGE! Another Murdering Pig Walks Free!“) Carlton Wayne Smith is another victim of the plague of murder by cop that is stalking Black and Latino youth—a plague that must stop!




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

American lives are not more important than other lives!—Protest Dec 31!

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


The following statement was made by Richie Marini of World Can’t Wait at the December 23rd Stop Mass Incarceration Network press conference calling for "Rocking in the New Year with Resistance to Police Murder."

Two weeks ago the world was shocked to learn of details of how CIA operatives tortured men in Guantánamo, in the “salt pits” in Afghanistan and at so-called “black sites” around the world.

The truth is, that it wasn’t done by a few rogue agents; it was designed and directed by people at the top; in the White House, in the Pentagon, at the CIA. It was approved by leaders of Congress, and no far, has been held accountable for these crimes.

In the last few weeks the world has been shocked that the police—who are sworn to “serve and protect”—have killed and brutalized so many Black and brown people in this country.

This seems to be approved by governments and approved by the courts; no one is being held accountable for these crimes.

Anyone who has an ounce of humanity and is outraged by the arbitrary use of force—whether in Guantánamo, Brooklyn, Afghanistan, or Staten Island—we call on those people to come out on December 31.

We call on those people who think that the lives of people living in this country are not more important than lives in other countries, and those who think that Black and brown lives matter, to join protests December 31st in New York City and across the country.

American lives are not more important than other lives!

Thank you.





Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Mexico Burns, U.S. Needs to Feel the Heat

December 8, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Editors' note: We are reposting this article, which originally appeared December 8, because of the continuing importance of the struggle sparked by the September 2014 police attack on 43 students in Iguala in the Mexican state of Guerrero. So far, the remains of one of the 43 missing students have been officially identified through DNA testing. Protests are continuing in Mexico. On December 26, three months after the students were disappeared by the police, protesters covered the wall of the military base in Iguala with graffiti declaring "Here are the murderers."


Relatives of the 43 missing students from the Isidro Burgos rural teachers college march hold pictures of their missing loved ones during a protest in Mexico City, December 26, 2014.

Relatives of the 43 missing students from the Isidro Burgos rural teachers college march holding pictures of their missing loved ones during a protest in Mexico City, December 26, 2014. AP photo

“If you don’t burn, you are ashes,” reads one hand-made sign in a Mexico City march, meaning: How could you not burn with fury and grief for the disappearance of 43 students at the hands of the police in the state of Guerrero in southwest Mexico; how could you not burn for the disappearance of more than 25,000 people and the deaths of more than 120,000 since the start of the U.S.-orchestrated “war on drugs” in 2006? It may have seemed (and the ruling class had hoped) that the enormity and gruesomeness of this situation had chilled many people in Mexico into a silence of ashes, but now the fierce struggle of the fellow students and parents of the disappeared has provided a spark which is spreading like a wildfire.

“A political earthquake the likes of which Mexico has not seen in generations” is how a November 15 Los Angeles Times op-ed piece by Rubén Martínez described the crisis in Mexico. Every day the crisis continues to intensify.

Check out just a snapshot of events since September 26, when police killed six people and disappeared 43 teacher college students in Guerrero, Mexico:

“We would be willing to take up arms, first and foremost, because we’re not going to have any alternative,” said a father of a disappeared student in a documentary by Vice News, The Missing 43: Mexico's Disappeared Students. This kind of sentiment is being hotly debated and defended in social media and on the streets.

Blatantly Political Attack on the Rural Teaching College Students

On September 26, 150 students of the men’s rural teacher training college in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero, (a 3½ hour drive south of Mexico City) went to the city of Iguala, Guerrero to raise funds to travel to Mexico City on October 2 to commemorate the anniversary of the government massacre of hundreds of students and other protestors in Tlatelolco Plaza in 1968. That evening, they took three buses from the bus yard, winning over the drivers to give them a ride home.

Travelling to events by commandeering buses—convincing the bus drivers to support them, or driving the buses themselves—is a tradition among poor youth in Mexico. This time, however, the buses were cut off on the way out of town by Iguala police who fired indiscriminately into the buses, shooting two to death on the spot and horribly killing another in the bushes by tearing off his face and gouging out his eyes. The police loaded 43 students in patrol cars, took them to the police station and there handed them over to the drug trafficking gang which was headed up by none other than the mayor of Iguala and his wife.

Many students were able to flee the scene, and they returned a few hours later with local journalists and more fellow students. They were again attacked by men shooting from unmarked vans, so wildly and openly that three people in passing vehicles were killed. One of the surviving students, Omar García, tells how they were fleeing, carrying a fellow student with a gunshot head wound, when they ran into soldiers from the military base very close to the attack scene. Refusing to call an ambulance, a captain instead interrogated and photographed the students, telling them that if they did not give him their real names they would disappear and nobody would know what happened to them. They told the students, “You wanted to act big, you asked for it.”

Now the Mexican government tries to pin the whole incident on the mayor of Iguala, Abarca, and his wife, now in custody after the federal government allowed them to quietly go on the lam for 40 days. Bullshit! Last year Abarca ordered the kidnapping of six political opponents; one of them escaped and testified that Abarca had personally taken part in killing the victims. The state refused to indict Abarca. His party, the Partido de la Revolución Democrática, the “leftist opposition” party, supported the upcoming mayoral campaign of his wife, whose ties to top drug lords are an open secret. And what about the military in the area of the attack? The federal government sent 10,000 troops to Guerrero to supposedly hunt for the students’ remains, but there is not even a whisper of investigation of the military’s threats against the students that night and the military’s failure to even question the hail of bullets around the students.

What the government is covering up is that Ayotzinapa students have been a thorn in the side of the ruling class in Mexico. The rural teacher colleges in Mexico have a long tradition of training youth of the very poor and often indigenous communities in leftist ideology and militant direct action. For this reason, along with the neoliberal economic program currently being crammed down the throats of the society at the demand of the U.S. imperialists, the government has closed most of the rural teacher colleges. Ayotzinapa students have been battling for years to fight the government’s efforts to force their college’s closure by cutting off its budget to a tiny trickle. In 2011, two students were gunned down by police during a march which blocked a major highway. It is absurd to claim that this intense conflict between the Ayotzinapa students and the state had nothing to do with the virulent police attack and the disappearance of the 43 students.

What the government is also trying to cover over is that many thousands of people are pointing to all levels of government as being responsible and in complete collusion with the extremely lucrative drug cartels. The municipal, state and federal police, the military, the rival electoral parties and the cartels are all in the service of enriching capitalist empires inside and (especially) outside of Mexico and enforcing their rule by exploiting and terrorizing the masses, although they may accomplish that through a complex interplay which includes a murderous rivalry among and between all these forces.

For more information on the struggle of the rural teachers colleges, see "From A World to Win News Service: Mexico: Rising protests after the kidnapping of 43 students."

Uncle Sam Is the Puppeteer Behind “El Barbie”

The U.S. government continues to staunchly support the presidency of Enrique Peña Nieto, ridiculed in Mexico as “El Barbie” for his resemblance to a Ken doll, intellectually as well as physically. But he’s not just a Ken doll, he’s a certified made in America doll. Just listen to U.S. big media drooling over him last December, after he rammed through the privatization of Mexican oil reserves, the fifth largest in the world:

“As Venezuela’s economy implodes and Brazil’s growth stalls, Mexico is becoming the Latin oil producer to watch—and a model of how democracy can serve a developing country,” (Washington Post editorial, 12/15/13)

“Mexican Oil And Gas: Christmas Arrives Early” (Forbes magazine, 12/12/13)

Of course, U.S. machinations in Mexico go much farther back than its recent efforts to restructure the Mexican economy in its image. The website shows profit remittances into the U.S. from investments in Mexico were $14 billion in 2012 alone.

But even more important than those financial statistics is the 2,000-mile border that Mexico shares with the U.S. and the millions of immigrants from Mexico who live in the U.S. and give the U.S. economy a huge shot in the arm.

This does not mean, however, that the U.S. is doing a good job at dealing with the chaos on its southern border.

The “war on drugs” which has caused such a disastrous loss of life since 2006 was largely orchestrated by the U.S. The extent of U.S. involvement has been kept secret to avoid a backlash against the campaign in Mexico. A full description would require a much longer article, but as John Ackerman, a National Autonomous University of Mexico professor noted on “The United States has funneled at least $3 billion in assistance to Mexico over the last six years, in addition to enormous amounts of secret spending in direct military and security support. U.S. agents directly participate in the Mexican drug war. Numerous ‘fusion centers’ exist throughout Mexico for directly sharing intelligence. American drones constantly fly over Mexican territory. Last year, the Obama administration ordered the website host GoDaddy to close down a leading Mexican opposition website in response to a groundless complaint from the Mexican government. And the Wall Street Journal has just revealed that U.S. agents dress up in Mexican military uniforms to participate directly in special missions.”

The U.S., the Real Power Behind the Mexican War on the People

This points to the urgency for people in the U.S. of all nationalities to take responsibility to aim struggle directly at the U.S. government for its so-called “war on drugs” (in reality a war on the people) and its support for the blood-stained Mexican government, which includes all its parties and branches of government.

There have been protests in different cities in the U.S. in support of the people's struggle in Mexico around the disappearance of the Ayotzinapa students. The website, among others, called for actions December 3-6 focused on protesting the U.S. government’s support for Peña Nieto. YES! Go directly to the source and hit at the hand which controls the puppet (or the Ken doll, in this case)! In some cities, those protests joined with actions against the grand jury decision to not bring any charges against the cop who killed Eric Garner in Staten Island, NY.

These protests need to continue and grow. People in the U.S. have a special responsibility to support the struggle of the people in Mexico, and to expose and oppose the moves of the U.S. capitalist-imperialist rulers.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Re-Colonization in the Name of Normalization

Behind the Re-Establishment of U.S.-Cuba Diplomatic Relations

Editor's note, 11/27/16: With the death of Fidel Castro and the ascension of the fascist Donald Trump to the presidency, U.S.-Cuba relations will be in flux.  This article, dealing with Obama's moves to "normalize" those relations, gives a good basic background in why revolution in Cuba was necessary and had to have U.S. imperialist domination as a central target; how and why that revolution did not ultimately succeed in winning liberation from imperialism; and how to understand and see through the self-serving propaganda of U.S. politicians and media on all this and actually get at the truth.


by Raymond Lotta | December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |

On December 17, the United States and Cuba announced the restoration of full diplomatic relations. President Obama also announced that the U.S. will ease restrictions on travel, on the amount of cash that can be sent to individuals in Cuba, on the export of telecommunications equipment, and on certain banking activity.

The U.S. had no right to isolate and punish Cuba. Its economic blockade of Cuba was an act of imperialist extortion. But the terms of normalization that the U.S. is imposing are not in the interests of the Cuban people.

U.S. Imperialism and Cuba

For more than 100 years, the United States has caused incalculable misery and suffering for the Cuban people. Cuba came under the domination of U.S. imperialism as a result of the Spanish-American War of 1898. The Cuban people had been fighting for their independence from Spain, but the U.S. seized on the situation to bring Cuba under its control. The so-called Platt Amendment passed by the U.S. Congress in 1901, which was incorporated into the Cuban constitution, set the terms for U.S. interference in Cuba’s domestic affairs.

The U.S. landed marines in Cuba four times in the early 20th century. It established a military colony—the Guantánamo naval base—which has been used as a concentration camp and torture chamber in the post-9/11 U.S. war on the world.

By the 1950s, the U.S. controlled 80 percent of Cuba’s utilities, 90 percent of its mines, close to 100 percent of the country’s oil refineries, 90 percent of its cattle ranches, and 40 percent of its sugar industry. Sugar plantation workers faced incredibly oppressive conditions—slave-like labor punctuated by periods of unemployment. Cuba also became an investor's paradise for U.S. gambling syndicates, real estate operators, hotel owners, and mobsters. U.S. businessmen and travelers would frequent Havana, the capital of Cuba, as a sex tourism center. There were some 100,000 prostitutes in the country! The U.S. gave economic and military backing to one hated regime after another to enforce these political, economic, and social relations.

These horrors were the backdrop for the Cuban revolution that came to power in 1959. This horror show is what has been extolled by Cuban exiles in Miami and the U.S. propaganda machine as the “lost Cuba.”

The Cuban revolution was a just and popular uprising against U.S. imperialism. It did not go on to break the stranglehold of world capitalism-imperialism, nor did it launch a genuine libratory social revolution aimed at uprooting all oppression including patriarchy. Nonetheless, the U.S. imperialists never reconciled themselves to defeat. In 1961, the U.S. carried out the Bay of Pigs invasion, which the Cuban people defeated. The CIA tried several times, employing the Mafia in some cases, to assassinate Fidel Castro. The U.S. imposed an unjust and immoral embargo that still exists—blocking Cuba’s ability to have normal trade with Western countries, to obtain needed medicines and agricultural and industrial goods.

Behind the Shift in Course: Imperialist Economics and Geopolitics

For the last 50 years, ten U.S. presidential administrations have tried to achieve regime change in Cuba by economic strangulation, political destabilization, and active attempts to overthrow the Cuban government. Have the U.S. imperialists given up on the goal of restoring a subordinate, client regime in Cuba? Have they decided to respect the national sovereignty of Cuba? Hardly. The U.S. has indeed shifted course...but what is happening is a change in tactics not in goal.

A decisive section of the U.S. ruling class, with Obama taking the lead, has concluded that the previous tack of diplomatic and economic isolation of Cuba and direct and indirect efforts to topple the Castro regime no longer serves the strategic interests of imperialism. Instead, the U.S. imperialists are aiming to use normalization of relations to achieve regime change from within—to create the conditions to turn Cuba, once again, into a neo-colony of U.S. imperialism. This is the reality that lies beneath the rhetoric of Obama’s “brave” and “bold” stroke to “break with the past.”

The Cuban economy is in serious crisis. The old-line leadership of Raul Castro and Fidel Castro is looking desperately for new props of economic support, and is willing to wheel and deal with the U.S. imperialists. And over the last five years, economic ties, trade, and financial flows, between the U.S. and Cuba have been growing. In these conditions, the U.S. imperialists are making a major move—and they have the upper hand. The Cuban leadership, for its part, is trying to use normalization and opening up to the U.S. as a way to hold on to power as the economic situation deteriorates.

Normalization is very much about U.S. capital sinking its fangs into Cuba—to extract super-profits from the labor of the Cuban people, to tap into its trained professional strata, and to plunder the resources of the island. The financial press is reporting on investment plans and proposals being drawn up by the likes of the agribusiness giant Cargill and Fanjul Corp (owned by a Cuban exile) that controls Domino Sugar. General Motors and Caterpillar have hailed Obama’s announcement.

But there are bigger strategic issues involved. The U.S.’s new stance towards Cuba serves broader geopolitical objectives: to reassert and tighten U.S. dominance over Latin America—what they have historically and arrogantly considered their “back yard.”

In waging their “war on terror,” their war on the world, since 9/11, the U.S. imperialists have not paid as much attention to Latin America as they have to the Middle East and Central Asia. In these circumstances, Venezuela, under Hugo Chavez and now Nicholas Maduro, was able to stake out more independent positions from the U.S. It has become Cuba’s most important source of economic support—and a thorn in the side of U.S. imperialism.

At the same time, capitalist China has emerged as a major economic rival to the U.S. in Latin America. China is now the second largest investor (behind the U.S.) in Latin America. It is the largest trading partner of several Latin American countries, including Brazil, which is the largest economy in Latin America. China has negotiated an agreement with Nicaragua to finance and construct a canal that will be longer and deeper than the Panama Canal.

All of this is of concern to the U.S. imperialists. Their change in course towards Cuba, to bring Cuba back into its imperial network through normalization of ties, is part of maneuvering to reassert U.S. hegemony in the Western hemisphere.

Clarity About Cuban Society: It Is Not Socialist

The Cuban leadership uses Marxist phrases. The Cuban economy has certain formal features that make it appear to be socialist: state-owned enterprises and extensive state-financed social programs. But this is not the essence of socialism, and Cuba is not a socialist society. Socialism is the momentous revolutionary leap away from capitalism towards communism. The socialist revolution is about putting an end to all exploitation and oppression. It is about empowering the masses of people, through the creation of a radically new and different state power, to increasingly take responsibility for running society, to ever more consciously change the world and change themselves—with the goal of creating a world community of humanity, where there are no longer class divisions and social inequalities, no longer social antagonism.

The achievement of communism requires visionary vanguard leadership basing itself on a scientific understanding of reality and how society and the world can be transformed in the interests of emancipating all of humanity. This is not Cuba. The revolution that Fidel Castro led did not break Cuba out of the bounds of bourgeois economic, political, and social relations.

Before 1959, Cuba had been a “monoculture”: an economy based on sugar production for the world market, dominated by U.S. imperialism. Castro did not lead and mobilize the Cuban people to radically restructure this economic legacy. Instead, the Cuban leadership sought a “quick fix.” Sugar would remain king of the Cuban economy, and the Cuban economy would remain hostage to the world market. But in place of the United States, Castro looked to the social-imperialist Soviet Union as its market for sugar and its chief source of credit. (The Soviet Union had ceased being a socialist society in the mid-1950s.)

The Cuban economy remained dependent and distorted. It was unable to provide for its own food requirements. Most importantly, the labor and energies of the Cuban people were not being applied to the all-around transformation of society and advance of world revolution but rather to the reproduction of relations of dependency and exploitation. Cuba became a kind of repressive welfare state in which the masses are kept powerless and economically chained to the logic of world capitalism. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Cuban leadership has looked for new fixes. Tourism was expanded on a large scale. Prostitution reappeared as a social phenomenon. Foreign investment was welcomed in to exploit natural resources. Venezuela provided Cuba with cheap oil—and this has helped keep the economy afloat. But the collapse of world oil prices is sending the Venezuelan economy into a tailspin—and putting new pressures on the Cuban economy. This is not socialism.

Clarity About Bullshit: “U.S.-Style Freedoms”

A narrative is pumped out by imperial ideologues and the media about the great benefits that “U.S.-style freedoms” will supposedly bring to the Cuban people. It is obscene:

Real Revolution

The Cuban people have suffered from direct domination by U.S. imperialism from 1898 until 1959, and then 50 years of U.S. economic blockade, military invasion and threat, and interference. The U.S. has no right to diplomatically and economic isolate Cuba. But the resumption of relations between Cuba and the U.S. on the terms being dictated by U.S. imperialism does not represent anything positive for the Cuban people.

What is needed in Cuba and the whole world is genuine revolution.—an emancipatory revolution that aims to uproot all exploitation and oppression, all oppressive relations and ideas, where intellectual ferment and dissent are fostered, where the conditions are being created for human beings to truly flourish. This revolution is a monumental and complex challenge in today’s world. But it is the only alternative to the madness of this system. And it is possible.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Mendocino High Girls Basketball Team Stands Firm Against Attacks on Their Righteous Protest Against Police Brutality and Murder

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


During warm-ups at a number of games in early December, the girls and boys basketball teams at Mendocino High School (on the California coast, 120 miles north of San Francisco) wore T-shirts with the words “I CAN’T BREATHE” to protest the police murders of Eric Garner and Michael Brown. The two teams were set to be part of a three-day tournament beginning December 29 in nearby Fort Bragg. But the Mendocino High teams received notice from the Fort Bragg school authorities that they were being disinvited from the tournament because of the wearing of the shirts. The members of the boys team—except for one player—decided to pledge not to wear the shirts during the tournament, and they were re-invited. But most players in the girls team refused to cave in to the pressure to abandon their principles and stand—and the team remains banned from the tournament. The student body at Mendocino High is 75 percent white, 9 percent Latino, and 1 percent Black.

Mendocino High girls basketball team.

The Mendocino High School girls basketball team wearing "I Can't Breathe" T-shirts before a recent game. AP photo

A Fort Bragg school administrator “justified” the ban on the Mendocino High girls team by saying, “To protect the safety and well-being of all tournament participants it is necessary to ensure that all political statements and or protests are kept away from this tournament.” And officials warned that anyone protesting the T-shirt ban during the tournament would be thrown out. This is totally outrageous! What about the safety and well-being of Eric Garner—who repeatedly said “I can’t breathe” as his life was being stolen from him by a NYPD cop applying a chokehold? What about the safety and well-being of the hundreds of others, mainly Black and Latino, who are killed by police around the country each year? What about the rights supposedly guaranteed under the U.S. Constitution to free speech and political expression? And it should be noted that high school sports events are regularly full of political statements and symbols, like the national anthem and the flag, that promote U.S. chauvinism and the oppressive status quo—what is at issue in the punitive action against the Mendocino High girls team is the substance of their statement.

Marc Woods, whose son refused to back down on the shirts and so will not play in the tournament with the Mendocino boys team, said his son was “fired up” over the “violation of his First Amendment rights.” He criticized Fort Bragg officials and said, “It doesn’t take a lot to suppress the exchange of ideas when you put fear into it.”

People need to speak out in support of the Mendocino High girls basketball team and their courageous stand. Repression against people who are taking action and making statements against the rampant and wanton murder of Black people by police should not be tolerated, and protesters who come under attack must be defended.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Questions from the audience at the November 15 Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian

Updated December 31, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


At the Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian on Revolution and Religion: The Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion, the audience was invited to write down their questions. More than 200 questions were submitted. During their discussion, Cornel West and Bob Avakian had time to speak to ten of these questions, which are printed below. Hear Cornel West's and Bob Avakian's discussion of these ten questions in the rebroadcast.

  1. "For many Black and Brown people who believe in Jesus Christ and rely on him for salvation, how do they square their religious faith, or can they square their religious faith, with a revolutionary mindset that does not look to heaven to fix problems on Earth, because many will not give up their God?"
  2. “How do we as a community approach the NYPD and our city officials to demand justice and free our children now, who are now incarcerated, all facing conspiracy charges and life in prison? We need help!” Which is a very powerful question. The second is I think related, from someone from Ferguson, Missouri. They ask: “Why are we, in 2015, still going through this hell, because I never thought I'd be still fighting for justice.”
  3. “I wish life could be like this room tonight all the time, but when we leave here, we go back to a hard world, where some people go through hell, and others harden their hearts and heads to the possibility that things can actually be much better. How do we carry the spirit of mutual respect back home and sustain it while we struggle to change the world. I mean, cynicism is deep; how do we keep our heads?”
  4. “I hear what you're saying, that I should be part of the revolution, and part of building this dialogue, but I'm too messed up, and I've done too many messed up things.” So what would you say to the youth in particular, the youth who've been cast out by this system, who say that?
  5. “Every rational conversation should begin with definitions, and John Lennon gave the best definition of god that I've ever heard: ‘God is a concept by which we measure our pain.’ Can you guys do any better in terms of defining god?”
  6. “In response to voting, is there no value in working to abolish a system while participating to minimalize the immediate damage it does at the same time?”

    And then someone else asks:  “If we avoid voting, because no candidate represents 'the Left,' how can we also avoid enabling the rise of the worst of the Right?”
  7. “How in this world are we, the oppressed, to accomplish true revolution peacefully, when in reality, the powers-that-be have all the artillery to kill, while all we have are our voices and our fists? How do we compete? There's no ‘win’ in this picture for the oppressed, as I can see. Please shed some light on this.”
  8. “What in communist thinking on the one hand and religious thinking on the other is a power for admitting the sins of communists worldwide or biblical texts? What enables communists on the one hand and religious people on the other to say, ‘We were wrong?’”
  9. “What is the role of art in revolution?”
  10. “What lessons in life did you learn the hard way?” And, "What is the wisest thing anyone's said to you?”

Many more questions were submitted to Cornel West and Bob Avakian than could be addressed at the Dialogue. The following are some of those additional questions.

  1. "Does the harm of religion spring primarily from the lack of preservation of the meaning/correct interpretation of the texts, or from the presence of statements susceptible to harmful misinterpretations despite the preservation of the text's meaning?  Does morality entirely come from class relations and interests, or does reference to these sources fall short of explaining instances where people act against both of those interests, in a moral manner?"
  2. Why do we revolt instead of evolve up and out of the restraints of this system?
  3. How can we the people help make a better world? The world is facing a difficult time and it is getting worse. Could you offer a word of advice on how we can cope in an uncertain world?
  4. In these male-dominated spaces, what role and in what ways do you all involve the concerns of women and girls of color (including sexual violence, silencing, gender-based discrimination, trafficking, etc.)?  Please don't forget our girls and women!
  5. Cornel West describes a central role of radical love in transforming the world. Could Bob Avakian explain how he sees that?
  6. How can we break the Hypnotic corporate spell off of the minds of Americans, who have mentally and spiritually fallen asleep behind the television screens, the newspapers and magazines, and pseudo-religious doctrines—all owned by the same multi-headed corporate Beast that controls over 90% of information going out into the public mind—the same monster which controls the school-to-prison pipeline institutions, like a conveyor belt intaking humans and mass producing robotic slaves, who go on to become teachers, police officers, soldiers and general consumers of the Corporate Conglomerates that Play Monopoly with us All?
  7. What was the way that Mao and Stalin handled the contradiction of religion after those revolutions and what does the "new synthesis" say about dealing with this contradiction?
  8. What does revolution look like? Who are the players and does it necessarily involve bloodshed?
  9. How can we revolutionize this country and not lose our spiritual faith that is taught to us by our upbringing, by our parents and family? Do you need to lose your spiritual faith in order to revolutionize the world?
  10. What has religion done to unify the Blacks in America to become self-aware and self-sustaining?
  11. Is religion—in a form that does not deny science and is open to inquiry and change—harmful? Why or why not? Is "prophetic fire" worth the superstition that accompanies it?
  12. Given the militarization of the police force and the criminalization of Black people uniting in force as conspiracy, what do each of you think would be a strategy to fight? They are actually killing us!!!
  13. If in communism there are no divisions or classes of people, how then will the many different religions survive in a society not divided when there are soooo many types of religions?
  14. A question for Mr. Cornel West: How could we respect and uphold the religious ideologies when they support the system of capitalism—the system which oppresses and exploits to survive? Also, these religions all justify and promote the oppression of women and openly declare that all women should submit and be subordinate to their male partners.
  15. To Bob: Do you think "religion" is a road blocker to the revolution?

    To Cornel: Bob spoke about using a scientific approach to analyze the system, but religion is not scientific, just emotional! Then how do you think you guys still go together??
  16. What are the specific strategies you are advocating we begin using to fight oppression? If violence is the strategy, given increased police repression and the fact that this strategy has not always been successful when used in revolutionary movements, what is different about the method of violence you are advocating for?
  17. To say we should rely on science for facts would also imply that science should be able to answer the question why. Also, how can we differentiate real science from science fiction—both science and science fiction are becoming part of our reality?
  18. Dr. West, could you expound on three words for me as you feel they relate to poor people's struggles—Humility, Dignity, and Indifference?
  19. How would the Communist Party handle the conflict in Palestine and the slaughter of the Palestinian people?
  20. For Dr. West: Is it possible for Christianity to confront, publicly, those who use religion to oppress? (Think Dominionists, 'The Family', and so-called evangelicals, whose efforts support the political establishment.)
  21. What is the application of Science in Art? What is the role of Art and the artistic process in Science? What does this have to do with a revolutionary morality?
  22. To both, mainly Bob: The vision and utopia of another world without the violence and injustices of capitalism are good, and most of us here do not need to be convinced of that. What about some specifics of how to get there? What are revolutionaries in the belly of the empire in the 21st century proposing that adds to previous conversations and proposals? Are there any corrections to be made in the course of revolution, taking into consideration the failure of some states in realizing communism or fulfilling the revolutionary dream? What to do to prevent today's revolutionaries from becoming tomorrow's oppressors when in power?
  23. The capitalist-imperialist system is so diversified. How is a revolution going to happen? What plans are in place for AFTER the revolution?
  24. Climate change is the most comprehensive threat to humanity caused yet by the capitalist system, yet most people believe either that god has plans to end all existence at some point relatively soon or that science can come up with technological solutions In other words, why act? What do you each believe needs to happen specifically to prevent the destruction of most living species as a result of climate change?
  25. Do you not feel that communism, its rejection of widespread dialogue and its claim to definitive truth is not in itself a "religion"?
  26. I address this question to both speakers: I have grown up Christian, but as I have gotten older, I see organized religion as a tool used to hold people down, as part of an unholy trinity—Christianity (Religion)/Imperialism/Capitalism. Am I wrong on this?
  27. What is the difference between a revolutionary communist who joins a party and an activist? Why should people be revolutionary communists?
  28. How can you, as a Christian, speak about a God that was given to us as Black People by white slave masters? What is Bob's view on this shit? How are either of you organizing or training youth to think outside the box of our current system?
  29. What does a party of heroes, like the Black Panthers, look like today?
  30. How do you speak to the role of violence in the revolution? WHEN violence is the end of reason and debate and FAIRNESS?
  31. To Cornel West: Bob Avakian referred to "salad-bar Christianity" and asserted that all Christians practice it. Do you experience yourself practicing "salad-bar Christianity"? If not, why not?
  32. How would you respond to folks like Reinhold Niebuhr, who would say that Communism and its belief in dialectical materialism is its own form of religion, as it attempts to predict what will happen in the future—an ultimate clash between classes?
  33. If the advances of the 1960s have been under attack by the powers that be, then what shall be the nature of the counterattack that will regain lost ground and move forward? How can it be "sustainable," not just sustained?
  34. In a dialogue entitled "Revolution and Religion," the speakers should answer one simple question: What is religion? Define.
  35. BA: You have been advocating revolution and uprising for Black and brown people. Can you speak more about what renouncing white/male/heterosexual/wealthy privilege looks like? How can folks who hold these privileges be part of the uprising?
  36. What can a high school student (freshman) do to make a change?
  37. How do KINDNESS, COMPASSION, and HUMILITY coexist with revolutionary activism? How can we help people understand the painful truth of what is happening in the world without invalidating them?
  38. The argument that most Black people are Christian leads to the need for revolutionary Christianity more than revolutionary communism. Does that mean revolutionaries in non-Christian countries should be non-Christian religious revolutionaries?
  39. Historically, has religion spawned more good or more evil?
  40. Why do you believe there is dissonance between the elders of revolution and the youth who wish to continue it? How do we (youth and elders) rectify this dissonance?
  41. a) How might conflicts in a religious vs. a secular (materialist) conception of history present a problem for unified revolutionary political organization?
    b) To what extent do future political endeavors depend on our relationship to and reading of human history, especially the history of capital?
    c) Have either of you ever had a prophetic dream?
  42. Would BA speak of Spartacus on the cross and Jesus on the cross?  Why is one remembered and not the other?
  43. For Bob Avakian: How would you define the "American working class" today? What is their revolutionary potential?
  44. Why the route of "religion" and not spirituality? Religions vary. They are confined to their own set of rules and norms. Conversely, spirituality can be practiced and pursued without the confinement of tradition. We know what oppression looks and feels like. We don't need a specific cloth to practice righteousness.
  45. With greed (or the love of money) being the culprit behind the majority of unsavory or oppressive decisions in our system today, how can we truly fight back when less than 20 families control the entire path and flow of every global currency?
  46. What inspires you about life and living?
  47. To Cornel West: Hotep! What are your thoughts on Pan-Africanists adopting and utilizing communist ideology?
  48. a) Many African-Americans have thrown off their slave owners. Why has there not been a similar mass movement to throw off the oppression of Christianity, with which they were also enslaved?
    b) How is the "faith quotient" of Revolutionary Communism not exactly identical to the "faith quotient" of Christianity (no matter how many times the RCP calls its movement "scientific")?
    c) Exactly how much room is there in the RCP's Constitution for [the New Socialist Republic in] North America for organized, perhaps fundamentalist religion?
  49. I would like to know how much longer it is going to take for a revolution to take place? Is it about people's mindset?
  50. Question for both presenters: Is it possible for communist or socialist ideas and practices to be fully implemented within a capitalist system? Please provide a rationale for your response.
  51. You have been such an inspiration in my life and continue to be. I went on the bus tour and ever since then, I have gotten closer to the Party. Everything that I experienced and witnessed on the tour changed me as a person. I hope the Party can expand from today's event and more people get involved. P.S., I wish I could give you a hug.
  52. Given the current two-party monopoly on message and platform, how can we move the public focus from various "isms" and onto the issues of poverty and unequal access?
  53. Can both guests respond to how revolutionary atheists can better listen to the particulars of people's religious heritage? I grew up not unlike Cornel, but am now an atheist and a revolutionary and get embarrassed when my atheist friends become "red and expert" on every denomination. They lose credibility on the street when this goes down.
  54. Cornel: From a spiritual/metaphysical perspective—anti-philosophical materialism—where the self consciousness can never die, is it possible to have as much enthusiasm for political activism as a Marxist?
  55. Why is there such lethargy among the masses in the U.S.?
  56. What will it take for mainstream America to embrace the world's population as equal? How does terrorist violence impact overall revolution? Does it detract or give it a louder voice?
  57. Is there anything "new" that Revolution and/or Religion can offer to the young generation (25 & under) that is jaded by all the manipulation and scandals that have ruined their hope for freedom?
  58. What is one action step to take as we go home to our local communities? How do we encourage, inspire and support those—the newcomers and the skeptics—who have been let down time and time again, convinced that hardened is who they are?  How do we bring them along because hardened is not who they are?
  59. How do we, as revolutionaries, bring about gender equality in an age of shameless bullshit?
  60. We're from the Cabrini Green projects in Chicago. We want to know why is religion being pursued in revolution when making us choose is dictatorship in itself? We're on the same mission!
  61. They killed Malcolm, ML King, Jr. and  decimated the Panthers. How can a revolution succeed, no matter how committed a significant group of people are?
  62. How do you feel about the military funding of Israel by America and what can we as Americans do against it?
  63. In what way is respecting the autonomy of non-human animals and not participating in eating them or drinking the milk or eating the eggs stolen from them—the torture, suffering and death of these sentient beings—antithetical to a Christian focus on the heart and compassion, or a revolutionary message of ending exploitation of women, African-Americans, immigrants, people of color and poor people? Can we add all sentient beings , regardless of their status as humans, to the list of oppressed and work towards the liberation of all?
  64. The book Caesar's Messiah:  The Roman Conspiracy to Invent Jesus by Joseph Atwill looks at the Old Testament, New Testament, The History of Jews and The War on the Jews and contends that Jesus was invented by the Jewish historian Joesphus after he was tortured around 73AD, after Caesar Flavius had completely decimated the Jews and wanted to make sure any surviving Jews would never again challenge the authority or god-status of Caesar. They created a pacifist Jesus so that followers (Jews, etc) would not struggle, fight against, resist the god-like supremacy of the rulers. What parts of the invented Jesus' message should we embrace and what parts should we reject in favor of Frederick Douglass' "power concedes nothing without a demand?"
  65. What of us who are African and Christian? How do we square our Christian beliefs with the reality that Christianity destroyed most of our native cultures and traditions?
  66. When I think about the fight for emancipation and the role of religion, the first thing that comes to my mind is the role of religion in perpetuating the conditions that make the fight for emancipation necessary in the first place. The fact that the negative aspect of religion is principal is hard to escape. So I believe the question is not what is the role of religion in the fight for emancipation, but how can people who are deeply religious make the biggest contribution possible to overcome the negative effects that are inherent in religion?—from a former prisoner from LA
  67. How do we create and sustain ways of life that bring us closer to the realization of our essential oneness as human beings?
  68. What are we gonna do about making this world a better world where we can all be treated the same? When and how?
  69. a) How can we better unite Antonio Gramsci's organic and traditional intellectuals?
    b) How can we best resist the repressive state when they operate with arms?
    c) Revolution requires a complete change of the system. That is not the removal of leaders, but the system of leaders itself. How can we peacefully dismantle the system that oppresses us?
    d) Is there a way to protect leaders from censorship? Do you think the web and Twitter will be censored in the future?
  70. It is said that the ratio of earnings of high officials (CEOs, etc) to ordinary workers is $500 to $1. Under a practically functioning communist system, one that recognizes that Americans have been socialized to tolerate some inequality of compensation as a basis for incentives to excel, what might you imagine the high official to ordinary worker earning ratio should be?
  71. So the power cartel takes all the donuts for themselves and leaves one to be split up by the population. Isn't the proper organizing principle of a proper society more than just everyone gets a donut?
  72. What role do worldwide religious minorities such as Wiccans and Baha'i have in the revolution? Is it different from Christianity or Islam's role?
  73. To B. Avakian and C. West: What should be done about ISIS?
  74. Are religion and capitalism inextricably linked? In other words, can Mr. Avakian's proposed revolutionist theory operate while still considering religion?
  75. Instead of persistent talk of revolution, what specific strategies do you suggest to bring about specific change in our U.S./global systems? Martin Luther King spoke of an annual guaranteed income for the poor and indigent when he was structuring his Poor People's Campaign. We need specific strategy. Please speak on this!
  76. Is there a role for myth under both your visions, and how does myth relate to unleashing people to act on the truth in fighting against the brutality that people face?
  77. Doesn't religion and belief in God dissipate our energy for dealing with the real world? How do we know that communism is the best system to inspire the full actualization of human nature?
  78. How can we separate church and politics and say that we are humanely sound in our actions? Isn't the basis of religion our moral compass for compassionate living?
  79. What kind of prayer does President Obama say before ordering a drone attack?
  80. Cornel: What do you do with the garbage in the Bible? And how do you connect Christianity in its most fundamental sense with an analysis, strategy and theory of revolution?
  81. Someone said that they don't see how you can be scientific and at the same time believe in some supernatural force and said that Einstein was an example of such a person: he made breakthroughs in science yet clearly believed in God.
  82. Bob Avakian: Express your understanding of spirituality. What role does spirituality play in Revolution? What is higher consciousness to you?
  83. Are those of us who observe and critique the Obama presidency disingenuous when we say the Obama administration has not been transformative in its approach to social justice, this has been merely cosmetic?




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

New York BA Everywhere Dinner:
Celebrating the Dialogue and a Whole New Culture That Is About Getting Free

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


From readers:

There were 80 of us at New York’s BA Everywhere dinner on Sunday, December 15: people who have been part of the protests against the police murders of Michael Brown in Ferguson and Eric Garner in Staten Island, NY, and the refusal of the grand juries to indict the killers; from the projects in Harlem; from Staten Island; from high schools and colleges; from churches. There were ex-prisoners, and there were parents who had lost children to police murder. Some people had been part of the “Millions March” in NYC the day before, including some who had kept marching into the wee hours of Sunday morning, many miles from Manhattan, to where Akai Gurley had been killed in the Pink Houses projects in Brooklyn by a cop who shot him as he stepped into the building’s stairway after visiting his girlfriend. Others had come after being part of the national demonstration against police brutality in Washington, DC, on Saturday.

About half the group had attended the November 15 Dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian (BA), “Revolution and Religion: the Emancipation of Humanity and the Role of Religion,” at Riverside Church. Others had seen the video of the Dialogue simulcast online since, and still others had just learned about the Dialogue and the movement for revolution in recent weeks.

We were all ages and nationalities. People have come into this all different ways and are also learning and getting into different aspects of the movement for revolution. There were young people and people from all walks of life who have run with the Revolution Club and with the Stop Mass Incarceration Network, who know and have been at events at Revolution Books, who were part of or followed the Abortion Rights Freedom Ride in Texas over the summer.

People came in and pitched in from the first minute—from carrying chairs up several flights of stairs to decorating the space and the tables. One young woman described hearing mothers who were meeting each other for the first time, talking as they were decorating the room about what they and their children experience with the police and the jail system. One of the moms said: Now we can fight this together and support each other. The other responded: Now we are HERE. There was a new and different “we”—a real feeling of belonging, a connection and something new happening here, a culture that was different and uplifting because it was about a whole different way people and society can be, with revolution!

At the core of the dinner were short film excerpts of BA and Cornel West from the November 15 Dialogue, followed by challenging comments in a talk about going forward, “The Time Is Now! Experience, dig into, spread, and support this Dialogue getting out in the world.” Folks were excited and responsive to the clips of BA and Cornel West onscreen: from BA’s “What if the world doesn’t have to be this way?”—reframing the horrors of the world as it torments and confines life today, as questions of what could be, and providing people with a materialist morality and a vision of what could be—to the clips of the last two questions posed to BA and Cornel West from the audience and their responses: “What lessons in life did you learn the hard way? What is the wisest thing anyone’s said to you?”

People’s responses as they watched the clips, and heard the talk, were vocal and connected to both BA and Cornel West on screen. A middle-aged Black man who has been watching the Dialogue online commented on how moving it was to hear BA speaking the truth about what Black people experience day in and day out, but just isn’t talked about. Others who had been at the live Dialogue commented about how rich it is to go back and watch it again. People felt how transformative seeing this Dialogue can and should be for many, many people at this moment—when eyes and hearts are opening, people are finding their voice and their courage, confronting big questions like what will it take to end the oppression of Black people and the murder and incarceration of our youth.

People took initial stacks of palm cards promoting the Dialogue and samples of beautiful fundraising cards.

There was delicious food, much of it contributed by people who came from all over the city and beyond, and from diverse cultures. There were great live performances of a Mexican revolutionary song with ukulele by a member of the Revolution Club, and a passionate rendition of Otis Redding’s “Try a Little Tenderness”—a change in plan after the singer had seen the part in the excerpts of the Dialogue that were shown where Bob Avakian and Cornel West talk about the differences between the culture of the ’60s and the dominant culture now, with Cornel remarking about how there was a “tenderness” in the culture then that is missing now, and BA remarking that it’s not weak to love.

Artwork donated to and shown at Revolution Books the week before as part of the artists’ expression “Ferguson is Everywhere—It’s Right to Rebel” lined the walls along with images of BA and enlargements of posters from

Everyone present was part of a room charged with a fighting spirit and with real hope borne of learning more about BA’s revolutionary solution. Getting into BA and spreading the Dialogue far and wide were explored and dug into... and there was a very exciting and elevated feeling of community! People left into the night alive with anticipation and determination for 2015—to change the world.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Thousands March in Los Angeles Against Police Violence

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

“This is long overdue. We have a problem in this country with people not recognizing inequality. Not just this criminal injustice system, but in America in its entirety. There’s not enough jobs for people to go around; and the police prey on the poor, they prey on the unfortunate, they prey on those who are disadvantaged... And if they don’t kill you, they will jail you. It’s just modern-day lynching.”

Middle-aged Black woman at December 27 LA march

Los Angeles, December 27

Photo: Special to

Over 5,000 people marched in Hollywood on Saturday, December 27 in the “Millions March for First Amendment Rights” protest. The mood of the mostly young Black crowd was against the police violence and brutality in Los Angeles, Ferguson, and New York. The marchers chanted “Hands up don’t shoot!” and “No justice, no peace!” as they marched from Pan Pacific Park down Beverly Boulevard. The marchers demanded justice for Michael Brown and Eric Garner, and they included the recent police murders of Ezell Ford and Omar Abrego in Los Angeles. Many people wore a T-shirt that had on it “Are we next?” Steve Nash of the Los Angeles Lakers, and rappers Tyga and The Game posted pictures of themselves at the march on Instagram.

A six-year-old girl who was marching said: “We’re protesting for the nation and the boys and the men, and my brothers, and my daddy. I’m happy, and my family is safe, because we’re in the protest.”

A single mother of two said: “I have a ten-year-old son. I’m surrounded by boys all the time, because they play sports, and my home is one that they all come to. I’m out here for them. I’m out here for my son’s future. I’m out here for our future. I don’t want my son, or his friends, or anyone else to grow up and be afraid; I want them to live when they go outside just to do anything social. And the time has finally come. It’s time to take a stand—for ourselves, as well as them.”

Los Angeles, December 27

Photo: Special to




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

One in Five Surveyed Black Cops Had Guns Pulled on Them by the NYPD While Off Duty

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


From a reader:

Over and over you hear police union thugs and cheerleaders for police terror and murder of Black people saying: If they just would do what police tell them, they’d be OK.

Well first of all, insisting that following racist, degrading, threatening, and very often illegal orders from police is a condition of staying alive is outrageous and an exposure in and of itself.

But even doing that won’t keep police from pulling a gun on you.

The Reuters News Service interviewed 25 African-American male active-duty and retired NYPD cops. These are Black cops. One can assume they more or less “did what they were told” when jacked up by their “brother” police.

All but one said that, when off duty and out of uniform, they had been victims of racial profiling, including being pulled over for no reason, having their heads slammed against their cars, getting guns brandished in their faces, being thrown into prison vans, and experiencing stop and frisks while shopping.

And of the Black cops interviewed, one in five had had guns pulled on them during NYPD stops! (“Off duty, black cops in New York feel threat from fellow police,” December 23, 2014).

So don’t give us any of this shit about if Black people just “yes sir” and follow whatever degrading, dangerous command some pig orders them to do, they wouldn’t be getting terrorized by police. Let’s get real: For the NYPD and every other police department in AmeriKKKa, terrorizing, brutalizing, and killing Black people for no reason is part of their job.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

"Breaking 'Broken Windows' Town Hall Meeting" Exposes Criminal Policing Strategy

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


"Broken Windows" is the policing strategy developed three decades ago and implemented by Bill Bratton starting in 1990 when he was chief of the New York City Transit Police Department under Mayor David Dinkins, and then as the police commissioner under Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. Under the Broken Windows doctrine, a massive police force harasses, beats, arrests and sometimes kills people, especially in the communities of the oppressed, for the smallest of infractions, such as selling loose cigarettes, drinking beer on the street, truancy, jumping a subway turnstile, and so on—activities that are legally considered "violations," not crimes, and which should result in a warning or a ticket at most. The justification for Broken Windows is that by going after small offenses, serious crimes will be prevented. The reality is that this is a doctrine for police to terrorize people in their neighborhoods, especially the neighborhoods of oppressed people, acting like an occupying army in which everyone is "the enemy."

When New York City elected its new, supposedly progressive mayor, Bill de Blasio, in 2013, one of his first acts was to appoint Bratton again as head of the NYPD, and de Blasio has continued to uphold the Broken Windows policing policy even after the chokehold death of Eric Garner for supposedly selling loose cigarettes.

The following is from a report from readers about the “Breaking ‘Broken Windows’ Town Hall Meeting" in Brooklyn, NY, which brings to life the brutal toll Broken Windows is taking on the lives, spirits, people and communities that have been targeted for it.


On December 21, over a hundred people gathered at St. Luke & St. Matthew Church in Brooklyn for a “Breaking ‘Broken Windows’Town Hall Meeting.”

Almost 20 speakers from different communities rose to denounce Broken Windows, and police brutality in all forms, telling chilling and often heartbreaking stories of the way in which human lives are twisted, damaged and stolen. These are just a few of the stories that we heard:

All of these stories and many more washed over the crowd, and often there were cries of sympathy, support, and recognition—there were certainly many more untold stories in the audience. And everyone walked away with a deepened sense and commitment to continue the movement to stop police brutality and murder until these outrages and horrors come to an end.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Letter from a Reader

On Challenges Posed by the New Year: Thoughts on "The Mass initiatives and Their Relation to Our Strategic Objectives"

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


In going back over the article “The Mass Initiatives and Their Relation to Our Strategic Objectives,” and thinking about the moment we are in, one dimension of BA’s leadership that stood out to me is the way in which he actually leads the Party in not only making “essentially correct theoretical abstractions,” but also wielding those to develop “the strategy, program, and policies, necessary to radically transform the world through revolution toward the final aim of communism”—to quote BAsics 6:7. This whole piece is very striking in its pinpointing of key “faultlines” of the system, its discussion of the importance of fighting those outrages, its analysis of how these horrors affect the masses so long as they are not challenged, some key questions that arise in taking up these struggles, and—as the basic foundation of the whole piece, which is continually returned to—how taking up these questions must be oriented in the context of the final goal of communist revolution and the emancipation of humanity. (The timeliness of the addendum at the end, given the course of events since it was written and the overall role played by our Party in those events, also stands out as very spot-on leadership as well!)

In thinking about this, and the challenges posed by the new year, I not only want to re-call this entire article to people’s attention, I want to recommend the particular section on how people like Sunsara Taylor, or Andy Zee, or Carl Dix, or Raymond Lotta, represent for the revolution and communism out in the world. The principles in this section actually give important orientation and guidance for everyone in or taking leadership from and supporting the Party in “getting right” both in more deeply grasping themselves and then explaining to people, in a down-to-earth way, the content and importance of BA’s leadership.

Of course, the entire quote that I referenced earlier from BAsics [6:7] goes on to emphasize the role of leadership in leading others to “take up and act on–and to themselves take initiative in wielding– the outlook and method, and the strategy, program, and policies, necessary to radically transform the world through revolution toward the final aim of communism, and through this process to continually enable others one is leading to themselves increasingly develop their ability to do all this. This is the essence of communist leadership.” This too comes through in this section of “The Mass initiatives and Their Relation to Our Strategic Objectives”—and in BA’s leadership overall. It is a model to which every revolutionary should aspire—now, more than ever.

A reader

* * * * *


A point on how people with the responsibility of representing publicly for our Party and its line present themselves vis-à-vis BA. We do not want "preliminary mantras" (or "mantras" of any kind) "in praise of BA." We are not, and we should not come off as if we were, some kind of religious cult which has to begin everything we say by praising our "god." What we want, what we need, is to bring out in a living way where we are coming from. The point is that we have a Party that stands on the basis of certain fundamental things. We should present this well. We should, in essential terms, put this forward: We have a Party that bases itself on communism as it's been brought forward to a new synthesis by BA, a Party that is led by BA. We should do this in a living way, as opposed to religious-like "mantras."

This should not be difficult at all. This should just be presented naturally—in a matter of fact, and at the same time compelling, way. It should be put forward boldly, and with the essential substance—and if people don't like that... boxing gloves—ideological struggle. But we should not come off as if there is, or there has to be, some kind of religious "mantra" involved. We shouldn't let petit bourgeois ways of thinking, with their prejudice against leaders, or at least communist leaders in particular, set the terms for what we do. But we also shouldn't actually turn into a cult, and tactically we should take into account how things affect people.

Where is all this proceeding from and where does it all have to go? How do you convey that, and not something else—how do you present that in the best way—given the particularity of the audience and the particularity of the circumstance? There needs to be a further leap in terms of how this is presented, with substance, in a living and compelling way—not only by a few people but by our people as whole.

If we are talking about someone like Sunsara Taylor, or Andy Zee, or Carl Dix, or Raymond Lotta, for example, what's the correct synthesis? People should get a living sense that these people are coming from a certain place—with substance, and liveliness—they are not at all a bunch of automatons. If our people clearly come through as basing themselves on a developed line, the new synthesis, and the leadership of BA, and at the same time it comes through that they are lively and creative people, and so on—that's what we need. Here are people basing themselves on this line and leadership and, wow, they can really think on their feet and have a lot to say—that's what should come through, that's what's gonna build up the whole thing.

Both of these things have to come through very prominently: 1, people are coming from the new synthesis of communism and the leadership of BA—that's the foundation; and 2, what they have to say and the way they present it is very provocative and illuminating—they don't fit the stereotype of a dogmatic communist, they're not cultists, etc., but people who are lively, creative and critical thinkers, with a scientific method and approach. And, in an overall way, it should come through that one flows from the other (that 2 flows from 1) in a fundamental sense. That is the right synthesis—there shouldn't be even a hint of defensiveness in all this, but there does need to be the right synthesis—and that will help drive people to the mainstays.

It should come across: The essential reason this person (an ST, AZ, CD, RL, etc.) is cool is because they've come to this understanding and orientation, this communism; it has a specific content in the world today and they're part of or related to a Party that has as its basis the new synthesis of communism and the leadership that's provided by BA. This embodies a synthesis of two things, which should be mutually reinforcing, in a positive way: the particular person with their own experiences, positive qualities, their own way of going after things, as one aspect, which is real; and the foundation and leadership that gives this the character that it has in its most fundamental aspect.


From "The Mass Initiatives and Their Relation to Our Strategic Objectives," by Bob Avakian, Chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party. Read the entire piece here.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

All Out for New Year's Eve!
No New Year Under This Old System!

December 29, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Over the past few weeks, the powers-that-be have tried to put a lid on the mass upheaval that so beautifully and powerfully burst forward this fall, using arrests, intimidation, and confusion. No! What people have been fighting against is too deeply entrenched in this system, too brutally unjust in its effects, and too utterly unnecessary for us to allow those on top to suppress or to derail it. This struggle has involved tens of thousands and changed the thinking of millions—too much has been begun to allow the powers to turn this around. Their attempts to rule the protest and resistance of the people out of order must be dramatically opposed, and new thousands must be and can be called forward in doing this right on New Year’s Eve itself.

New Year’s must set the tone for this whole coming year. There are thousands who can be called forward now and involved in these actions. Yes, those who came forward in their tens of thousands to fight for justice against the reign of unpunished police murder of Black and Latino people in this so-called “land of the free.” Yes, those who see a profit-over-all system hurtling things toward the destruction of the environment. Yes, women and men who hate the way that women are degraded, humiliated, robbed of basic rights and oppressed in this so-called modern society, who hate all of the gender oppression done to LGBT people. Yes, people who have stood up against what the U.S. and its allies like Israel do to people all over the world, including the most depraved and sadistic torture by the CIA and the outright genocidal attacks in Palestine. And yes, most definitely yes, to those standing up in solidarity with the people of Mexico against the government’s outrageous murder of 43 students and the cover-up that has followed. All these different forces, and more besides, should bring in signs pointing to the outrages they are fighting—and if there is cross-fertilization, and people with all different kinds of signs, even better!!

In short, let there be a festival of resistance—of different forces from different perspectives, bringing in all sorts of different issues and signs against different forms of oppression and injustice... marching, chanting and joining together in the spirit of defiance and determination to make 2015 even more powerful than 2014—even more widespread and determined, and even deeper in its challenge to what gives rise to and is at the root of police murder and mass incarceration and the whole question of “race” in America... as well as even broader in spreading this spirit of defiance to be acting against all the other horrors in all their forms... a festival of resistance up against this system's orgy of oppression!

There is still time to make this happen on the scale it needs to. Just this past Thanksgiving, the demonstration against the Macy’s parade was organized overnight on Twitter, and people turned up at 7 a.m. to be there—and this then set the terms for the news that day. There is no reason why people cannot now tap into the creativity of this growing movement, reach out to many new people, and find imaginative ways to make this a big deal in the press. There are many, many groups working on these questions; so long as they want to see some basic change in a positive direction, involve them—new or old. And if there is a battle for a permit, in any city, make it a fight that everyone knows about and becomes part of, making it a battle for the right to protest and drawing even more people into the fight and into the streets.

This is a rare time. What was not possible six months ago is possible today. What was not conceivable a year ago is conceivable today. The challenge to those who want to see this struggle deepened, strengthened, and carried forward, is to conceive, to imagine, and then to carry out what we conceive on the scale that is now possible.

On New Year’s itself: bring the revolution into all this. Get out word on the dialogue between Cornel West and Bob Avakian, “Revolution and Religion: the Fight for Emancipation and the Role of Religion,” and the whole campaign to raise big funds to get BA Everywhere. Get out word about the website, and get out copies of Revolution newspaper, far and wide, on the spot.

In short, make this a New Year’s Eve where something really NEW can be celebrated, in struggle up against the old.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Press Conference in NYC for New Year's Eve Protest

December 30, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


A press conference today called by the Stop Mass Incarceration Network and others announced plans for New Year’s Eve protests in response to the call:

Rock in the New Year With Resistance to Police Murder!


Participants in the press conference were Carl Dix from the Revolutionary Communist Party and the Stop Mass Incarceration Network, Mojique from Students Against Police Brutality, Brittany Williams from Dancing for Justice, and Noche Diaz from the New York City Revolution Club.

In New York City, people are being called to Times Square and Union Square tomorrow to join Stop Mass Incarceration Network’s plans for Rocking in the New Year with Resistance to Police Murder under the theme of “NO NEW YEAR UNDER THIS OLD SYSTEM. WE CAN’T BREATHE!” Bringing placards and banners with this message, and whistles to announce their presence.

Carl Dix said, “Tomorrow night it’s New Year’s Eve in New York City and—you know the deal—they drop the ball, bringing in the New Year, just like the old year. But no New Year under the old system with wanton police murder of Black and Latino people. We are going to rock in the New Year with this message. We are going into Times Square... Union Square, too, with this message.”

The day is going to have opportunity for a lot of participation. During the daytime hours people can join the hundreds of thousands of people who will gather at Times Square from all over the world for the largest New Year’s Eve celebration in the country. Bringing their signs and whistles, like the tens of thousands who have marched in cities and towns across the country in recent weeks and months, they will give voice to sentiments of many beyond their numbers. Carl Dix emphasized that everyone is invited. All the people whose hearts have been moved by yet another death of Black and Latino youth—if that hurts your heart, be there.

Carl Dix said, “I’ve got something to say to those who say politics should be left to the side at New Year’s time because it’s a special time. Well, there’s no time that’s not a time to say no to police murder, in fact, when that ball is dropping is exactly the right time, while all eyes are fixed on this. If you care about the environment, the oppression of women, U.S. torturing people—welcome to this protest. No New Year Under This Old System! We Can’t Breathe!”

The press conference got significant attention from mainstream media including reporters from TV stations NY1, WNBC, channel 47, 10, 4; and Fox News. At the end of an article in today’s NY Post on the conflict between NYC Mayor de Blasio and forces behind or working through the NYC police unions over how to suppress protests and enforce oppressive “law and order,” the (notoriously pro-police brutality) NY Post concluded with this report from the press conference:

“We will not abide by calls to ease up or stop the protests,” said Carl Dix, national spokesman for the Revolutionary Communist Party.

“Someone who presides over a setup where those who are entrusted with public security have killed and brutalized unarmed, innocent people—and then the justice system has done nothing to those law enforcement officers—has no right to tell us when, where and how we can protest against them.”

Plans for New York City announced at press conference:

New Year's Eve Dec 31
9 pm - Rally at Union Square
10 pm - March to Times Square
FB: stopmassincerationnetwork Twitter:@StopMassIncNet Phone: 347-979-SMIN (7646)




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Autopsy Report Released: Ezell Ford Was Shot in the Back at Close Range

December 30, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Ezell Ford was a 25-year-old Black man murdered by the LAPD on August 11 in South Central, LA—just two days after the murder of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO. After withholding the Autopsy Report for four months, the LAPD finally released it on Monday, December 29. The report shows that Ford, who was unarmed, was shot three times—in the side, in the arm, and in the back.

The shot in the back showed a “muzzle imprint” from the gun fired. This means he was shot at a very close range.

The official story from the LAPD is ridiculous—that Ezell knocked down the cop, laid on top of him, and tried to grab the cop’s gun. In a LAPD statement, they said, “The officer yelled out to his partner that Mr. Ford had his gun. The officer’s partner then fired two rounds, striking Mr. Ford. At about the same time, the officer on the ground, while on his back, grabbed his backup weapon, reached around Mr. Ford and fired one shot at close range striking Mr. Ford in the back.” Just try to picture this, he was pinned down, but was able to grab his backup gun, and somehow reach around Ezell to shoot him in the back. This flies in the face of statements from several witnesses at the scene, that Ezell was shot in the back while laying face down. You can see original local news coverage above.

Ezell Ford had mental health problems and was known to people in the neighborhood. He was just a block from his home when he was attacked by police. A lawyer for Ford’s family, Steve Lerman said, “I dare say that this is criminal, I think they executed this poor young man, mentally incompetent man... Defenseless, harmless, unarmed.”

The cops who killed Ezell, Sharlton Wampler and Antonio Villegas, are from a notorious so-called “anti-gang” unit in the area called Newton Division. These pigs proudly call themselves “the Shootin’ Newton.” Wampler was sued in 2011 for a warrant-less search, beating and near drowning because a family he was messing with demanded a warrant. The suit accused the cop of kicking and punching several family members and dragging a son to a kiddie pool, repeatedly pushing his head under water.

The LAPD has also put a security hold on the autopsy results in the murder of Omar Abrego, a 37-year-old father of three who was beaten to death just nine days before Ezell Ford was killed and only four blocks away. You can see the graphic and painful video at right.

In a press conference announcing the autopsy results for Ezell Ford, LAPD Chief Charlie Beck told people to “let the system work.” The fact that we are having to read the autopsy report of a 25-year-old Black man murdered by the LAPD pigs is the system working! And the fact that they are still withholding the truth of how they murdered Omar Abrego is the system working. And it didn’t take long for the “system” to start working even harder as all sorts of ex-pigs gave their “impartial” expert views on the autopsy, saying that it proves the account of the killing given by the murderers. “The system working” means that everything is being set in place to, once again, let the pigs who murder a Black or Latino person walk free.

But the people must stand up and say, “This has to stop now!”

Immediately following the release of the report, dozens of demonstrators took to the streets in Los Angeles—in Downtown LA, Leimert Park and through the afternoon and evening at 65th and Broadway where Ezell Ford was murdered. Later in the evening, a small group stopped traffic on a major freeway and fled the scene before they could be arrested. In St. Louis, protesters blocked I70 for Antonio Martin and Ezell Ford.

These were important but the protests need to grow more united, broader, deeper and more determined. We cannot tolerate this any longer and need to reach everyone who feels the same: No New Year Under This Old System, We Can’t Breathe!

LA Plans for New Year’s Eve Include:

• New Year’s Eve, Dec 31
9pm Entrance to Grand Park—reach tens of thousands gathering for a New Year’s celebration
11pm 65th and Broadway—speak-out/ midnight march through the neighborhood

• New Year’s Day, Jan 1
MEET AT 7AM @ MEMORIAL PARK, 30 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena, CA 91103
Take the Gold Line from Union Station to Memorial Park Metro Stop in Pasadena
Assemble from 7am-8am and march from Memorial Park to Fair Oaks and Colorado Blvd.

Bring banners, posters, signs, whistles and noisemakers! WEAR BLACK




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014


January 1, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Protest reports

Updated 1/3/2015


Rock in the New Year With Resistance to Police Murder!
A Call from Carl Dix

On New Year's Eve, as the clock winds down on 2014, the powers that be will hope to be ringing in a new year that carries forward business as usual. That must not be allowed to go down because business as usual in Amerikkka includes wanton police murder of Black people. The refusal of grand juries in Ferguson and Staten Island to indict the cops who murdered Michael Brown and Eric Garner made this clear. So the powerful, beautiful and necessary outpourings that have disrupted this society's normal routine must continue and escalate on New Year's Eve and into the New Year.


Stop Mass Incarceration Network NYC Press Conference: "No New Year Under This Old System. We Can't Breathe!"

Read more

All Out for New Year’s Eve! No New Year Under This Old System!

December 29, 2014

Read more

Points of Orientation in the Wake of Events on December 20, 2014

Decenber 21, 2014

Read more

What we need is an actual revolution...

Get into BA

NYC: Marchers Defy NYPD Threats

Marching to Times Square

Photo: @I_Cant_Breathe

Midnight: Protesters enter into crowds at Times Square chanting: Indict, convict, send the killer cops to jail - the whole damn system is guilty as hell; I can't breathe; If we don't get it shut it down; How do you spell terrorist? NYPD; and No new year with the same old shit, we need a revolution, get with it.

Read more

Protest Attacked at St. Louis Metro Police Headquarters

Read more

"We Are All Still Oscar Grant"

Hundreds of people, including many of Oscar Grant's family and friends, attended the 6th Annual Oscar Grant Vigil organized by Oscar's family. The event is held each year outside the Fruitvale BART station where Oscar was murdered by BART police while returning home from celebrating New Year's Eve in San Francisco. At the vigil people spoke, sang, and performed poetry in remembrance of Oscar's life and in support of the struggle to end police brutality, and to say WE ARE ALL STILL OSCAR GRANT.

6th Annual Oscar Grant Vigil
Poetry group Young Gifted and Black performing at the vigil for Oscar Grant. Photo: Special to

Read more

Seattle: "Cheer for a 2015 where all the system's crimes are resisted and we move to put them to an end"

Seattle, December 31

People in Seattle rallied and marched into the middle of the New Year’s celebration at Seattle Center that draws thousands of people to watch fireworks at the Space Needle. We spoke to the crowd calling for people to put their hands in the air to put an end to police murder and say “No New Year Under This Old System.”

Read more

Los Angeles

Los Angeles, Grand Park, December 31

The Revolution Club and Stop Mass Incarceration Network took the call—No New Year Under This Old System; We Can't Breathe—to Grand Park in downtown Los Angeles, where tens of thousands of people came to celebrate New Year's Eve.

Downtown San Francisco

"I can't breathe" in downtown Houston

Houston, December 31

Photo: Special to

Read more

Cleveland: No Business as Usual on New Year's Eve

About 25 people braved the cold to protest business as usual on New Year’s Eve. At Public Square a huge banner—Rock in the New Year with Resistance to Police Murder! NO NEW YEAR UNDER THIS OLD SYSTEM! WE CAN’T BREATHE!”—grabbed people’s attention. We marched to the official New Year’s Eve event, which featured the rapper, Machine Gun Kelly, whose lyrics demean women.

Read more


Harlem, New Year's Eve

"No new year under this old system" on Chicago's Navy Pier -- 1000s of youth descended on the pier to watch fireworks and many saw the protest. Photo:


Harlem, New Year's Eve

Harlem, New Year's Eve. Photo:

Market St., Newark NJ

Market Street, Newark

New Year's Eve PM - Market St. in Newark NJ shut down by protest. Photo: Twitter/Art Superheroes ‏@WikileaksTruck

Boston, 5 PM: 100+ Stage Die-in in Copley Square

Boston, December 31

Read more


Pittsburgh, December 31

Photo: Twitter/@endwhitesilence


Philadelphia, December 31.

New Year’s Eve #blacklivesmatter protest, Philadelphia, 7th & Arch. Photo: Twitter/@jpegjoshua

From NYC Stop Mass Incarceration Network:

Demand a Permit to March New Years Eve!

Press conference, New York City

Read more

12/31 Press Conference at Hall of Justice in SF

San Francisco press converence December 31.

Mainstream and alternative TV, radio and other media showed up for a press conference at the Hall of Justice in San Francisco. Stop Mass Incarceration Network, Code Pink, Mujeres Unidas y Activas, Revolution Club, and a San Francisco high school teacher called for intensifying and spreading resistance in 2015, and New Year's Eve and New Year's Day protests in San Francisco and Oakland.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

12/31/14 4:30 PM: New Year's Eve Protest Attacked at St. Louis Metro Police Department

December 31, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper |


Above: Outside the St Louis Police Headquarters 12/31/14. Below: Marching to the St. Louis Police Headquarters 12/31/14. Photos:

Over 100 determined protesters hit the cold St. Louis streets on New Year’s Eve morning, taking over downtown streets for an hour before ending at the main St. Louis Police HQ. People chanted the names of victims murdered by the police – Vonderrit Myers, Kajieme Powell, Mike Brown among others. Some protesters attempted to occupy the police headquarters. A list of demands including firing cops who killed people and dropping charges against non-violent protesters was read out loud and taped to police headquarters, and protesters served an “eviction notice.” Police brutally expelled the occupiers, macing and beating numerous people including a photographer and a livestreamer. Protesters defiantly stood together to defend each other from the pigs’ brutality, and stayed in their faces out front after being forced out.

One organizer, speaking to the crowd, explained that New Year’s Day marks over 145 days since Mike Brown was murdered, and that we have NO intention of backing off the fight for justice. One of the organizers said the following about what this action meant to him: “United we stand. So that means you can’t kill us all.”

There have been several arrests. At this moment many protesters remain in the street in front of the Police HQ.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Marchers Defy Police Threats in NYC

Updated January 3, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |



Leaving Union Square 12/31/14. Photo: @Newyorkist

Getting ready to march from Union Square to Times Square


Midnight: When the march got turned around at 38th Street, Travis Morales called a mic check to focus everyone on what we were there for. He called on people to keep marching and asked, "Why is it their cops get away with murder—but when we march they order us arrested?!"

A tactical regrouping incorporating marching and chanting continued. The march retreated, but then maneuvered and—with a heavy police tail—marched into the crowd of revelers right before midnight. Amidst the uproar as the ball came down and fireworks went off, the protest maintained its coherence, chanting “hands up, don't shoot,” hanging a big “From Harlem to Ferguson” banner from scaffolding, agitating, and forming a big circle. Then there was a die-in of about 25 people for about 20 minutes. Most revelers left, but many stayed, checking out the protest and taking pictures of it, talking to protesters; about 20-30 joined the protesters. This scene lasted about 30 minutes, and then the protesters left en masse, with some groups of 10-15 marching off in the streets, chanting and waving signs.

11:10pm Update: Protesters heading to Times Square are chanting: Indict, convict, send the killer cops to jail - the whole damn system is guilty as hell; I can't breathe; If we don't get it shut it down; How do you spell terrorist? NYPD; and no new year with the same old shit, we need a revolution, get with it. Police intimidation and threats are escalating - police have riot helmets and visors down.

10:40pm Update: The crowd is marching up Sixth Avenue toward Times Square. Spirited, loud, blowing whistles and chanting.

9:40pm: Union Square, New York City. About 200 people have gathered at this point for a rally in Union Square. The crowd is very diverse, very multi-national; mainly younger people like in their 20s but there are also older people. People are very determined to fight these police murders. A woman holding a sign “I can’t breathe” spoke about the horror of what happened to Eric Garner. An older man in a wheelchair came out in the cold, cold weather to protest wearing his Vietnam Veterans Against the War shirt. Two young Black women, sisters both students. they came because, “There is still racism, Black people are still being profiled and it’s a shame that this is still going on after all the struggle that we have waged.” A young white guy from out of town who didn’t know NYC, got subway directions to the protest.

The NYPD are trying to really intimidate people with lots of squad cars and scooters parked along the streets, disrupting the rally, making announcements through bullhorns people will be arrested if they block the sidewalk. Travis Morales and Carl Dix have addressed the rally. Carl spoke very powerfully to the point that people are in the right place here tonight, that this is a time when people need to say goodbye to all the oppression and murder. He spoke to the question of the system’s call for a moratorium on protests -- that the people cannot stop resisting, that we are not doing this for ourselves we are doing this for the lives of children that hang in the balance every time they confront the NYPD, the Ferguson PD, the LAPD or any other PDs. And he spoke to the fact that to really get rid of this will take revolution and that this is what he is all about.

Sunsara Taylor, correspondent for and initiator of Stop Patriarchy tells the crowd: They say spend New Years with people you love, and the defiant ones, like you, who have stood up, are the people I hold dear. We won’t stop until all this police murder stops.

Another speaker condemned police brutality and sexual violence against Black women. A speaker from Ferguson, MO said “They call us violent but they shoot us down like dogs.”

Contingent from Harlem arrives at Union Square. Photo: April Watters




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

"I can't breathe" in downtown Houston

Jasnuary 1, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


There was no central New Year's Eve gathering in Houston this year. But a small group of us gathered downtown on a cold and drizzly night, and marched through areas where some restaurants and hotels were having celebrations chanting, "No new year under this old system. We can't breathe, we can't breathe." This quickly polarized the scene—some people joined in the chanting and raised their arms, while others complained that we were disturbing their new year's celebration.

A couple of people joined in and marched with us for a while. One Black man said that he joined the march because it is for justice and it is courageous for a handful of people to stand up to the superpower and he had to check it out. He added that we all have to come together for righteousness. The other guy said that he loved what we were doing and wants to be a part of waking people up.

Houston, December 31

Photo: Special to

We stopped at lines of people waiting to get into the clubs and restaurants, and got out Revolution and masks that said I can't breathe. About 20 people took masks to wear in the clubs, and several people came up to talk about how their friends and family have been brutalized by the police. At a restaurant, a number of people put up their arms in hands up don't shoot.

Later in Midtown, in the midst of a pub crawl, a young white woman came out and said she was ecstatic to see us. A group of young men put on the masks and said that that they are down for this, and want to join in with what's happening all across the country. One of them said that he had just gotten a message from one of his friends marching in NYC. They said that all this police brutality and murder by the police has got to end. They said that they would check out Revolution and




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Boston, 5 PM: 100+ Stage Die-in in Copley Square

Jasnuary 1, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Boston, Copley Square, December 31


Over 100 people marched to and staged a die-in in Boston’s Copley Square, while the names of people killed by police were read aloud. In response to statements by Boston’s mayor and police commissioner that protests on New Year’s Eve were inappropriate, an organizer said: “It’s important to realize that these protests will continue. Nothing’s changed. Nobody’s been indicted. It’s not gonna go back to business as usual. This is gonna continue to be in people’s faces until there’s a change. This is only gonna grow.” (More photos at Boston Globe website).

We received this note from a correspondent in Boston:

Organized by First Night against police violence around a hundred people held a die-in and speak-out in the midst of the city's new year celebration in Copley Square. "Indict,convict, send those killer cops to jail, the whole damn system is guilty as hell!" was a popular chant, and at a certain point the protesters took it into the First Night parade headed downtown to the Boston Common. The protest included youth of all nationalities and a number of long-time activists, and many are truly struggling to figure out how to stop this epidemic of murder and brutality by the police and the system. Supporters of Revolution Books joined the protest and got out the call by Carl Dix and Revolution newspaper.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Cleveland: No Business as Usual on New Year's Eve

Jasnuary 1, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


About 25 people braved the cold to protest business as usual on New Year’s Eve. At Public Square a huge banner—Rock in the New Year with Resistance to Police Murder! NO NEW YEAR UNDER THIS OLD SYSTEM! WE CAN’T BREATHE!”—grabbed people’s attention. We marched to the official New Year’s Eve event, which featured the rapper, Machine Gun Kelly, whose lyrics demean women. People liked that we held up placards that spelled out “Black Lives Matter.” A few joined in when we chanted, “Indict, convict, send the killer cops to jail! The whole damn system is guilty as hell!” and “We have the solution... revolution!” “We can’t breathe” especially connected with people. Many in the mainly young crowd took Carl Dix’s New Year’s Call and palm cards to watch the Dialogue, “Revolution and Religion” between Cornel West and Bob Avakian. Some whistles were passed out and people started blowing them at the cops. We got several “thumbs up” and some people thanked us for being out here on New Year’s Eve. A few people asked whose murders are we protesting. A revolutionary said, “Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice...” and people started chanting, “Fuck the Police!”




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Seattle: "Cheer for a 2015 where all the system's crimes are resisted and we move to put them to an end"

Jasnuary 1, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |


Seattle, December 31

Photo: Special to

Seattle, December 31

A group of youth who stopped because they are sickened by police murder. Photo: Special to

People in Seattle rallied and marched into the middle of the New Year’s celebration at Seattle Center that draws thousands of people to watch fireworks at the Space Needle. We spoke to the crowd calling for people to put their hands in the air to put an end to police murder and say “No New Year Under This Old System.” Dozens of people put their hands up, gave us fist bumps and hugs, took signs and expressed support in other ways. One woman said she had watched all the videos and couldn't believe how many cops got away. Many hundreds took fliers with the call from Carl Dix. There was sharp back and forth with some who defended the murder by police and many debates about why do we say Black Lives Matter, and what really is the reality for Black people under this system, as well as what are U.S. troops doing around the world. Twenty people, including some who had come down for the fireworks, did a die-in, counting down to midnight after chanting "We Can't Breathe" 11 times. We rose up as the fireworks started and cheered for a 2015 where all the system’s crimes are resisted and we move to put them to an end.




Revolution #367 December 29, 2014

Sunsara Taylor & Carl Dix on Confronting the Anti Abortion Woman Haters January 22 & 24, 2015

Jasnuary 2, 2015 | Revolution Newspaper |