revcom.us, May 20, 2019 through May 26, 2019 (revcom.us)

Voice of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/will-women-be-human-beings-or-incubators-en.html

Will Women Be Regarded as Human Beings or Incubators?

Your Response to the Fascist Assault on Abortion May Well Determine the Answer

by Sunsara Taylor

| revcom.us

 

A vicious wave of extreme anti-abortion legislation is being hammered into law across the country. Alabama’s new law bans all abortions—even in cases of rape and incest. Doctors who provide abortions could be sent to prison for life. Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, Missouri, Indiana, Arkansas, and Utah have also passed bans—many at stages in pregnancy before most women even know they are pregnant. (See this article for details on these laws.)

People need to fiercely protest, struggle against, and truly fight to defeat these monstrous measures that represent a misogynistic assault on the people! People must fight for Abortion on Demand and Without Apology!

A Future Far Worse Than the Horrific Past

This assault on women’s most fundamental right to control their own bodies and lives is not merely about slamming women back to the days when abortion was illegal, when thousands bled to death on motel floors or died of sepsis after botched illegal abortions and millions of women had their lives foreclosed by forced motherhood.

As barbaric as all that was, what we are now facing is far worse.

It is worse because those launching this assault are working to legally enshrine fetuses as “persons.” This means that women and those who assist them in getting an abortion—or even many miscarriages—could be prosecuted and punished for “murder” based on this. This has horrific consequences for further criminalization in the age of mass incarceration, and the qualitative reversals of abortion rights represent a violent reassertion of patriarchal chains with momentum currently escalating towards further attacks on women. All of this backed by a fascist regime in power and courts packed by them!

The movement behind this assault has already blown abortion clinics to pieces, assassinated doctors, and hounded and shamed women on their way into clinics in every state of this country for decades. They already have imprisoned women for miscarriages, for attempting suicide while pregnant, and for desperately attempting to induce their own abortions. This violent reassertion of patriarchal enslavement will be a high-tech Dark Ages—a surveillance-state Handmaid’s Tale of forced motherhood, thousands of years of traditions’ chains put on imperialist steroids, and terror and punishment against any woman or person who resists.

This Fascist Move Is Rooted In an Unreformably Patriarchal System

This assault on abortion is part of a worldwide escalation of misogyny bound up with the resurgence of fascism and religious fanaticism in the face of a rapidly changing world. One of these changes in recent decades has been tectonic clashes over the role of women. Driven by determined struggle of women against their oppression as well as by major economic and geopolitical changes, women are drawn into roles that were for thousands of years foreclosed to them, amidst larger changes in gender roles.

But while all this has strained and stretched some traditional patriarchal norms and forms of oppression, none of this has—or could—put an end to women’s oppression. Male supremacy is a critical dimension of the culture and cohering norms of societies around the world, reinforcing the rule and dominance of underlying exploitative systems, now capitalism-imperialism globally. The oppression of women is interwoven into the fabric of these societies in different ways, a historical development that began with and accompanied the earliest forms of exploitation and oppression in human societies. Ending this oppression can only be done through an actual revolution—here and around the world—that overthrows the system of capitalism-imperialism, and works towards abolishing the class and social divisions this oppression is inextricably linked to, as part of a worldwide process.

In the absence of such a revolution, while reforms have been made, the workings of this system have emboldened and given initiative to reactionary offensives to not just “put women in their place,” but to exact vicious revenge aimed at further controlling and subjugating them, including in the personal and intimate sphere. This is part of a larger fascist program driven by a Christian fascist movement that has been built and supported for decades by the Republicans and which the Democrats have refused to ever call out for what it is. (See critical sidebar on the tremendous harm that has been done by the Democratic Party and those who shill for them.)

The Question Yet to Be Determined: The Reinforcement of the Chains of Enslavement or the Shattering of Them?

Years ago, when the contours of this assault were just beginning to take shape, Bob Avakian, the leader of the revolution and the architect of a whole new framework for emancipation, presciently analyzed that:

The whole question of the position and role of women in society is more and more acutely posing itself in today’s extreme circumstances.... It is not conceivable that all this will find any resolution other than in the most radical terms.... The question yet to be determined is: will it be a radical reactionary or a radical revolutionary resolution, will it mean the reinforcing of the chains of enslavement or the shattering of the most decisive links in those chains and the opening up of the possibility of realizing the complete elimination of all forms of such enslavement?

Fight the Power, and Transform the People, for Revolution!

The interests of humanity lie in carrying forward the revolution to emancipate all of humanity, including all forms of gender oppression. Through revolution, it is possible to bring about a world where never again does a woman or girl know what it is to feel shame about her body and sexuality, to feel fear walking alone at night, to have her life curtailed or violently ended simply because she is female, or to be forced to bear a child against her will. It is also possible to bring about a world that puts an end to all oppression based on race, nationality, or language, to put an end to all exploitation everywhere, and to put an end to the catastrophic destruction of the environment.

This is the revolution Bob Avakian (BA) has forged the science and strategy for—and it is the revolution he is actively leading. BA’s new communism represents a radical breakthrough for the emancipation of all of humanity, including theoretical advances in what underlies the oppression of women and what it will take to get beyond it, a different approach than has existed in past communist theory and practice.

But for this revolution to be real—for the huge clash now raging over women’s role to be resolved in a liberating way as opposed to the nightmare we are currently accelerating towards—many more people need to dig into this revolution, spread the word about it, and get organized to make real.

Right now, this includes mounting massive resistance, on a scale unseen for decades (if ever), to these horrendous attacks now coming down and the worse ones surely to come. Again, there is a great need, for people to defiantly fight to defeat these spearheads of horror, these attacks against women, this misogynistic assault on the people!

Sunsara Taylor initiated the Abortion Rights Freedom Rides held in 2013 and 2014 and is now part of the National Revolution Tour, going around the country spreading revolution and organizing people into the movement for an actual revolution.

SOBER UP: The Democrats are Part of the Problem, NOT the Solution!

Relying on the Democrats to stop this misogynist assault on the people is worse than a joke.

It is NOT acceptable (or honest) to tell yourself you are “resisting” this fascist assault, if what that “resistance” means is merely voting for, donating to, and mobilizing others to vote for the Democrats—or to just participate in their elections.

The Democratic Party has been part of the problem from Day 1. They gave up the moral high ground to the anti-woman fanatics when they declared that abortion should be “rare.” They gave up legal and political ground by confirming fascist judges, by refusing to fight hundreds of abortion restrictions, by re-approving the Hyde Amendment every single year since 1976, and more. They have NEVER officially called out Christian fascism for what it is, they have ALWAYS treated the Republicans as legitimate, even as they have increasingly become a ruling class fascist force, now concentrated in the fascist Trump/Pence regime in power.

The Republican Party Is Fascist
The Democratic Party Is Also a Machine of Massive War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity

To the Democratic Party, preserving the stability of the imperialist system it serves is far more important than even the most basic reforms affecting women. It is a ruling class party—a party that represents and fights for the interests and stability of the American capitalist-imperialist empire—and that has real meaning. For all its very real differences with the Republican fascists, these are differences over how to defend and extend this oppressive system. And, its overriding role is to “corral and domesticate dissent” in the service of that system, as Bob Avakian has put it.

In contrast to both the fascist ruling class party (the Republicans) and their Democratic ruling class rivals, it is necessary for the masses of people to mobilize fierce and growing resistance outside the killing confines of this system’s elections and Democratic Party politics. Most fundamentally, it is necessary to do this in a way that contributes to—and while also taking up in its own right—getting organized for an actual revolution!

A fetus is not a baby!

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Read also:

State Laws Banning/Restricting Abortion

State legislatures have enacted at least 1,074 restrictions on abortion since Roe v. Wade was decided in 1973. They’re all designed to completely stop, slow, or impede women’s right to abortion.

In 2019 alone, 304 abortion restrictions have been introduced in state legislatures.

Read more.

Read also:

What Is an Abortion and Why Women Must Have the Right to Choose
Life Cannot and Should Not Always Be Preserved

By A.S.K.

Read more

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/state-laws-banning-restricting-abortion-en.html

State Laws Banning/Restricting Abortion

| revcom.us

 

State legislatures have enacted at least 1,074 restrictions on abortion since Roe v. Wade was decided in 1973. They’re all designed to completely stop, slow, or impede women’s right to abortion.

In 2019 alone, 304 abortion restrictions have been introduced in state legislatures.

A number of states have passed or are in the process of passing “heartbeat” bills. These in effect ban all abortions—prohibiting abortion after six to eight weeks of pregnancy, when doctors can detect a fetal heartbeat and many times, before a woman even knows she is pregnant. Ohio, Kentucky, Mississippi, Georgia, and Missouri have each signed into law a “heartbeat” bill, and 11 other states have similar bills in the works.

These are only some of the state bills passed just this year, or about to be passed, that are aimed at taking away a woman’s right to choose:

Arkansas: A bill was signed into law in March that bans abortions after 18 weeks of pregnancy, six weeks before the standard set by Roe v. Wade.

Kentucky: Two bills passed in March—one that is a “heartbeat” bill and the other which bans abortion if a woman is seeking it because of a fetal diagnosis.

Mississippi: In March the governor signed a “heartbeat” bill into law. If upheld, this would close the only remaining abortion clinic in the state.

Utah: In March the governor signed a law to ban abortions after 18 weeks.

Indiana: In April the state placed a near-total ban on the most common type of second-trimester abortion.

Ohio: A “heartbeat” bill was signed into law on April 11, with no exception for rape or incest.

Georgia: A “heartbeat” bill that bans abortion at six weeks was signed into law on May 7. This bans abortion before most women know they are pregnant.

Alabama: On May 15 the governor signed the most restrictive state abortion law since abortion was legalized in 1973. The law completely bans all abortions except if it is “necessary in order to prevent a serious health risk” to the woman. There is no exception for rape or incest. The law classifies performing an abortion as a felony punishable with up to 99 years in prison.

Missouri: May 17, a “heartbeat” bill was passed that would ban all abortions after 8 weeks, before many women know they are pregnant.

Louisiana: A “heartbeat” bill is currently speeding through the state legislature, and the Democratic governor has said he will sign it.


Jefferson, Missouri, May 17, 2019. Photo: AP.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/1265/what-is-abortion.htm

What Is an Abortion and Why Women Must Have the Right to Choose

Life Cannot and Should Not Always Be Preserved

By A.S.K. | | Originally posted: January 23, 2005 | revcom.us

 

There is now a wave of reactionary laws that rip away women's rights to control their own bodies. Kentucky and Mississippi are the latest to declare abortion illegal after a fetal heartbeat is detected (which most often occurs after six weeks of pregnancy and long before many women know they are pregnant). This rests on a profoundly anti-woman stance and a profoundly anti-scientific pile of rubbish. In the face of this, we think it very important that our readers get a scientific understanding of what an abortion actually IS and spread this to others.

 

Is it true that a fetus is a form of life? Of course it is. It is made up of live cells, it is growing and processing energy, it has the capacity to mature and reproduce, it has a genetic system and so on.

Will an abortion destroy this form of life? Yes, absolutely.

Well then, isn’t an abortion killing another human being? No, absolutely not.

A fetus is not yet a human being. It is more like a seed or a sprout of a human being. It is "alive," but that is also true of all the other cells in a woman’s body. It has no life of its own yet. It is not yet a separate life from the life of the woman in whose uterus it is.

Just because something has the characteristics of "life" doesn’t mean people should necessarily preserve it. This is an obvious truth. Think about it: People routinely terminate "life" for what is seen as a greater good. We do this every time we eat—all the fruits, vegetables, and meats come from live plants and animals killed for our nourishment. People end "life" every time we cut a tree for firewood, every time we take antibiotics to kill off the live disease organisms which are making us sick, or even every time we kill other human beings in self-defense or to prevent them from causing other human beings to suffer and die.

In other words, we kill life to preserve and enrich other life . So what about the life of the woman?

The life of a woman who is forced to continue an unwanted pregnancy is endangered. She might have to resort to a risky back-alley abortion. And if she is forced to go on with the pregnancy, her life is weakened and degraded. She will be robbed of pride and self-respect because she has been told by society that she is essentially worthless—even an undeveloped bunch of cells that isn’t even a whole baby yet gets more respect and has more value than this woman! Because she is not allowed to control her own body, her own reproduction, not allowed to decide whether or not or when to become a mother, she has no more freedom than a slave.

If a woman doesn’t want to continue a pregnancy all the way (for whatever reason), she should have the freedom to end it, safely and easily. This is for the greater good—for the health and overall well-being of that woman, whose life we should value and cherish more than that of a partially formed fetus. And for the greater good of humanity. After all, isn’t it in the greater interests of all of humanity that women not be slaves?

The "right-to-life" people don’t see it that way at all. They have made it crystal clear that to them the life of the fetus is more important and has more value than the life of the woman in whose uterus it is. From a social point of view, these people who want to forcibly take away a woman’s right to abortion are nothing but vicious, rabid dogs.

But from a scientific point of view, they are also ignorant fools or calculating liars.

A Fetus Is Not a Baby—It is Part of a Woman’s Body

Have you seen the pictures they use? Check them out. These pictures are very often blown-up pictures of fetuses almost ready to be born (but the truth is that more than 90 percent of abortions in the U.S. are done in the first three months of pregnancy). These pictures are designed to make you feel like the fetuses women are aborting are just like cute little babies, ready to be held in someone’s arms and cuddled and burped. But they’re not! Far from it.

And have you noticed how the fetuses are conveniently pictured floating around all by themselves, as if they weren’t still inside a woman’s body? Where is the woman in all this? Even in most school textbooks they show you drawings or photographs of a fetus inside a uterus, but they don’t show you the woman it is part of! It sort of makes you forget the woman is even there!

One of the things the Operation Rescue types are doing is taking advantage of the ignorance many people are kept in concerning their own bodies—what happens inside a body, how a pregnancy develops, and so on. Let’s have a look at what the truth is about how a fetus develops.

The truth is that pregnancy is a process which takes some time. And it is not some mysterious event guided by outside forces either. It is part of the normal processes of the woman’s body. Not the man’s, who has nothing to do with it except for providing the sperm. Not the church, not the government, not any other person. It all takes place inside the woman.

The egg changes and develops into a fetus, and keeps on changing for nine months, only because the woman’s physiology (the way her body works) is making these changes happen .

Let’s review what happens in the first trimester of a pregnancy (1 to 13 weeks since the woman’s last menstrual period):

It all starts with an egg cell and a sperm cell. Each egg cell and sperm cell is alive.

Over a period of about 30 years a woman releases one or more of these live egg cells from her ovaries every single month. That’s a lot of egg cells over a lifetime! Every time a man ejaculates, he releases between 200 and 400 MILLION LIVE SPERM CELLS! And that’s definitely a lot of live cells! Of course most of the time they just all die. Funny, isn’t it, that even though eggs and sperm are "life" too, the right-to-lifers aren’t trying to "save" every one of them!

If even just one of those sperm cells released in a woman’s vagina swims into the uterus and out into one or the other of the two Fallopian "tubes" (on each side of the uterus), and runs into a ripe egg cell, fertilization can take place. That means that the egg and sperm have fused and the result is called a fertilized egg.

The fertilized egg gets pushed down the tube. The egg started off as one cell, but soon divides into two cells, then four cells, and so on. By the time it gets back to the uterus (a muscular sack only about the size of a small pear) the egg is still much smaller than the period at the end of this sentence.

For the pregnancy to keep going, this tiny egg has to stick to the sides of the uterus. If it doesn’t stick (implant), it will simply be flushed out of the uterus with the menstrual blood during the woman’s next period. When this happens—a form of "spontaneous abortion"—the woman doesn’t know it, because the size of the fertilized egg is so tiny.

If the egg does stick to the woman’s uterus, this triggers hormonal changes which will keep the woman’s next period from coming on. The way pregnancy tests work is that they measure these hormones in the woman’s blood or urine to tell if she’s pregnant.

The implanted egg is now called an embryo, and its shape starts to change as the cells start to move around to different positions. The cells are beginning to "differentiate." That means they are starting to take on different functions and form different kinds of tissues which will later become different parts of the body. Instead of all being the same, some cells will become skin cells or heart cells or eye cells, for instance.

Three weeks into the pregnancy, the whole embryo is still only about 2mm (2 millimeters) long, or about the size of the letter "o."

The placenta gets formed from a combination of some of the tissues of the woman’s uterus and of the woman’s embryo. It is a mass of tissue rich in blood vessels, which connects the embryo to the woman’s blood circulation system. During the whole pregnancy the fetus will remain attached to the placenta through the umbilical cord .

The placenta helps show how the embryo or fetus is very much part of the woman’s body for the whole pregnancy. The embryo cannot get food on its own, clear out its own wastes, or even breathe on its own. It gets oxygen and dissolved food nutrients (and sometimes toxic substances) from the woman’s blood through the placenta and umbilical cord. It gets rid of its wastes the same way, releasing carbon dioxide and urea into the woman’s bloodstream for disposal.

Just as a single live cell cannot survive independently of a body, the embryo cannot survive independently of a woman’s body because it is truly part of her.

After four weeks of pregnancy the embryo looks a little like a tadpole. It even has gill slits like a fish, and a bony tail! These are features shared by embryos of many different species of animals and reflect our common evolutionary history. The embryo is now about 5mm long, smaller than this: ooo.

By the third month of pregnancy the embryo, now called a fetus, starts to look a little more "human" as it grows arms, legs, sex organs, fingers, and toes. It is undergoing a lot of changes, but inside, its internal organs, muscles, skeleton, and nervous system are still very undeveloped. The whole thing is still only about 25mm long, or about this long: oooooooooooooo

ABORTION IN THE FIRST TRIMESTER (1 through 13 weeks since last menstrual period)

More than 90 percent of abortions done in the U.S. are done in these first three months of pregnancy.

This is the best time to do it. It is the easiest, safest, and cheapest time to do it. It does not need to be done in a hospital but can be done in a walk-in clinic. You don’t have to be put to sleep.

The way it is done is that a flexible tube the size of a straw is inserted up the vagina and into the uterus. This tube is connected to a bottle with a suction pump. When the pump is turned on, it acts like a small vacuum cleaner and sucks out the contents of the uterus. What comes out looks mainly like blood, since the embryo or fetus is still so small. The abortion is usually not very painful. The woman may feel "cramps" in her uterus similar to having an IUD put in. The whole thing lasts only about 5 to 15 minutes and then it’s over. The woman rests for a while, and then she can go home.

There is no doubt that if a woman is pregnant and doesn’t want to be, she should do everything possible to go to a clinic and get an abortion within the first three months since her last period. The sooner the better.1

SECOND TRIMESTER: (14 through 24 weeks since last period)

This is a time when the fetus grows a lot. Starting around the fifth month, the woman is able to feel it kicking, even though it is still only about eight inches long. It may suck its thumb, simply because of a genetically programmed sucking reflex which facilitates nursing after birth. Its internal organs, bones, and muscles continue to develop. In the sixth month it grows rapidly, to around a foot in length.

But it is important to realize that it is still not "complete" and that a whole lot of development still has to go on. Even at the end of this trimester it cannot survive outside the woman’s uterus without special medical measures.Its brain is still very unformed. Its lungs are not ready to take in air. It is still very much a part of the woman’s body and completely dependent on her bodily processes.

Abortion in the second trimester can still be done. But it can be hard for a woman to find a doctor or hospital to do it. Because the uterus is softer and the fetus is bigger, there is a greater possibility of medical complications, such as a torn or "perforated" uterus or infections. It is important to get good medical care for these second- trimester abortions.

There are different ways of doing these later abortions. Sometimes a doctor will inject a saline solution into the woman’s uterus. This kills the fetus and makes the woman’s body go into labor, and the fetus is expelled like a live baby would be. Sometimes a doctor will give the injection and then leave the woman alone, or with just a nurse, to "deliver" the dead fetus. This is cruel and difficult for all concerned and it is totally unnecessary. There are other methods.

The best procedure for second trimester abortions involves a combination of dilation, curettage and evacuation (it’s called a D and E). The entrance to the uterus is stretched open (dilation), and the uterus is scraped with a metal loop (curettage) and emptied out (evacuation) by suction. This is a much better procedure: much safer, and less upsetting for the woman and medical staff than the "induction" abortions which cause the woman to go into labor. D and E abortions can be done from 12 to about 16 to 24 weeks of pregnancy.

Since abortion is so much easier (physically and emotionally), safer, and cheaper, in the first three months of pregnancy, why does any woman ever get one later than that? The answer is that sometimes errors are made with pregnancy tests, or a woman gets pregnant while taking pills, or with an IUD, and doesn’t realize she is pregnant right away. Sometimes she has to fight off the pressures of men or family members who object to the abortion out of their own backwardness. Sometimes she has to struggle through her own ignorance, fears, and lack of information before knowing what to do. Most often the delay is caused—and this is a real crime—by a lack of money. Increasingly, state laws that impose waiting periods and the lack of abortion facilities in rural areas will force more women to have abortions in the second trimester.

A high proportion of the women who are forced to get later abortions are young, poor, or women of color. This is another example of how women of color suffer a double oppression. And when laws are passed to force under-age women to get a parent’s permission before getting an abortion, more delays and more "late" abortions are certainly the cruel consequence.

While first-trimester abortions should be encouraged, and everything done to facilitate them, it is important to uphold the right of women to terminate an unwanted pregnancy at any time, and to provide women with the safest and the least physically and emotionally demanding abortions available at that time.

THIRD TRIMESTER (25 weeks or more since last period)

Abortions are rarely done in the third trimester except in emergencies to save the life of a woman. In such cases the doctor has to cut open the uterus and remove the fetus and placenta, and this would be considered major surgery.

The fetus still has a lot of development to undergo in these last three months of pregnancy. It grows a lot. But in the seventh month the fetus still only has a small chance of surviving if it is born prematurely because its internal organs are still not developed enough. In such cases doctors have to take special measures to try to finish incubating the fetus.

Final organ formation takes place in the eighth and ninth months. This is when the lungs finish developing. Until the lungs are finished the fetus would not be able to breathe air independently outside the uterus.

Also during this time lots of new brain cells are formed and major nerve tracks develop in the brain. In human beings a lot of the brain development continues to take place in the six months or so after birth . But by the end of the nine months of pregnancy the fetus is developed enough to be born and the woman’s body needs to expel the fetus before it gets too big to get past her pelvic bones! The woman’s body now goes into labor, contracting the muscles of the uterus, and finally pushing out the fully formed fetus.

As soon as the umbilical cord connecting the fetus to the woman’s body is cut, the supply of oxygen from the woman to the fetus is cut off and the newborn takes its first independent breath. This is its first act as an independent human being. It is now really a "baby." For the first time it is a truly separate life entity, and a separate social entity as well. From this moment it is really a separate human being, and should be treated as such.

A.S.K., the author of "Life Cannot and Should Not Always Be Preserved," is a contributing writer to the Revolutionary Worker with experience in the struggle for scientific experimentation as well as the revolutionary struggle.

Footnote:

1. Note from RW editors: The drug RU-486 is another method of abortion. Called the abortion pill, it causes the embryo to "unhook" and the menstrual period to start, flushing the embryo out of the uterus. It can only be used at the very beginning of a pregnancy. Anti-abortion forces are attacking this method, spreading misinformation and hysteria about its safety.

Another area that the right wingers have attacked is emergency contraception, or "Plan B," a pill that is taken within the first three days after sex. Plan B is not an abortion pill—it is basically a high dosage of ordinary birth control pills that works by either stopping the egg from fertilizing, delaying ovulation, or preventing a fertilized egg from becoming implanted in the uterus, depending on when the pill is taken in relation to the woman’s menstrual period and when the woman had sex. Right wingers have blocked women from being able to get this pill at pharmacies without a prescription so they can get access to it in time, and have spawned a movement of hospitals and pharmacies that refuse to offer the pill to rape victims, even though they are legally obligated to. [back]

Fetuses are NOT babies!

Abortion is NOT murder!

Women are NOT incubators!

What Is Life?

1. We are, in fact, made of "starstuff,’’ along with everything else on earth, living or not.

2. On earth, living things are typically made up of one or more living cells. And all forms of life on earth are related and are descendants of the first one-celled creatures to live on this planet.

3. All the different kinds of living creatures or organisms have in common:

  • the ability to grow and process energy
  • the ability to reproduce
  • and the ability to encompass (make happen and "take in") change, and to pass it on over the generations.

4. Human beings have a lot in common with all the other life-forms on the planet. What makes us "different’’ is not really the things that prove we are "alive." After all, there’s a lot of "life" all around!

What makes us different, or "special," is that we have evolved to a higher degree than any other species— the ability to change the conditions of life through social means —by living and struggling in concert with other human beings during our entire lives. This— being part of human society rather than just being alive —is the essence of what makes us human beings.

 

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You’ve read this article, now think about the crucial role revcom.us plays.  White supremacy and fascism are running rampant, and women’s basic rights are being ripped away.  America threatens wars on Venezuela and Iran, as it terrorizes immigrant families and wantonly plunders our environment—imperiling humanity’s very future.  At revcom.us you learn where these horrors come from, how they can be ended through an actual revolution, and how people are working now toward revolution.  You can find, engage and spread the work of Bob Avakian, the leader of this revolution, the architect of the new communism, and author of a concrete blueprint for a new society moving toward full emancipation. So become part of fighting for humanity’s future: sustain or donate now.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/583/you-think-you-are-woke-but-you-are-sleepwalking-en.html

You Think You Are Woke...
But You Are Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare

Get Organized for An ACTUAL Revolution to Emancipate All Humanity

| Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us

 

Read the #BEB - Bourgeois Electoral Bullshit - broadsheet

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Noche Diaz Presenting the Lifetime Fire Extinguisher Award to Al Sharpton at the Sacramento, CA State Capitol.

Intersectionality: Feel-good Make-believe in the "Woke" Spaces of Empire

by Nayi Duniya

Welcome to the land of intersectionality—where a seemingly radical and all-encompassing framework can comprehend and traverse multiple oppressions faced by billions on this planet without the “messiness” of overthrowing the system that generates and enforces these oppressions; where truth is determined and wrong is righted by anointing the most oppressed as authority and leadership in struggles for reform; where the most fundamental and deep-seated social divisions and lopsided gulfs of the world such as between rich and poor nations are effectively ignored and where identified “intersections” and “direct experience” shared across “lanes” are sufficient to change the world.

This is feel-good make-believe “woke” world. In the real world of horrendous—and needless—suffering, it is a cruel joke inflicted upon the billions of humanity. The world is a horror for the vast majority—oppression and exploitation of whole peoples, genocidal wars and violence in the intimate sphere, millions driven off homes by conflict and global warming. This world is shaped and stamped by a system: the system of capitalism-imperialism.

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IDENTITY POLITICS AND PRIVILEGE

Have you ever noticed that the one privilege these “identity politics” hustlers don’t talk about is American privilege?—the privilege that comes from living in the USA, a country that plunders the world and whose wealth and power rests on brutal exploitation and oppression throughout the world, backed up by the massive violence of the American military. These hustlers want all they can get of that privilege. In opposition to that, what the masses of humanity need is to do away with and move beyond this whole vampire system, putting an end to all exploitation and oppression.

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Response to FEM Magazine:
Trying to Censor Revolutionaries in Safe Spaces of Empire

By Tala Deloria, Revolution Club, LA

After The Word on Wednesdays (an open mic poetry venue at UCLA) censored a revolutionary’s poem, we challenged the people attending to a debate about where the framework of intersectionality leads. They did not come to debate, but a contributor to FEM magazine wrote an article about the incident. This is a response to help bring clarity to the contention.

What we have here is two opposing models in contention. One aiming to sweep away oppression and exploitation throughout the planet, and the other aiming to curate the positions of oppressed people within this system—dictating who owns what oppression, and what stories can be told by whom—all of which leaves the world as it is.

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Prison Abolition: How to Feel “Woke” Without Fundamentally Changing a Thing

A REVOLUTIONARY Intervention from Tala Deloria
Revolution Club member and UCLA student

If you’re serious about ending mass incarceration and police terror, you need to be talking about the OVERTHROW of this system. Anything short of this, in the final analysis, is bullshit.

This system of capitalism-imperialism is what’s driving the genocidal police terror and mass incarceration of over 2 million people, over half Black, Latino and Native American men and women. This same system terrorizes the globe with wars for empire, economic sanctions, coups, bombing and torture. It drives people from their homelands in desperation for a life and livelihood and then warehouses them in detention centers and concentration camps at the border. This same system enforces vicious misogyny, oppressive gender relations and has now brought to power a fascist regime reigning through undisguised dictatorship and intensified repression, concentrating the naked vileness that makes up the heart of America. This system CANNOT be reformed!

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Stop Being Farra-CONNED!

We Don’t Need to GET IN ON Oppression,

We Need to END Oppression

Get With the Real Revolution

Welcome to Farrakhan’s “Saviours’ Day” message, where he will tell you how after 400 years of being bitterly oppressed, you should now learn to be a more obedient slave, prove you can be useful to your oppressors in hopes of negotiating a better deal and becoming their junior partners, and look to an imaginary ruler in the sky to one day give you a chance to be big-time oppressors.

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Going After the Sacred Cows of Identity Politics on a College Campus—Opening the Debate on Reform or Revolution

You Think You’re Woke... But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare! Intersectionality, “democratic socialism,” and all the rest of that stuff will keep you locked within the system we have now. These approaches can only lead you to bickering, begging and bargaining for seats at the imperialist table. We need a revolution—NOT reform—a revolution to OVERTHROW everything rotten and emancipate all humanity.

We brought this message to an Ivy League campus and challenged people to debate. Before we got very far, campus security freaked out and kicked us off campus. So we came back, but this time with a satirical flyer from campus security that said, “A Message From Campus Security: Do Not Talk To The Communists On Campus.” We dressed up in a police jumpsuit and the ugliest pig mask you have ever seen and handed out the flyer. A picture of our flyer was tweeted out by a writer to 47+ thousand followers, we ended up in group texts and somebody told us that we’d been made into a meme.

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Why I Went to Challenge Brittney Cooper—and What We Could All Learn From This

I recently went to an event on Black Feminism and Hip Hop to challenge Black feminist author Brittney Cooper. I brought an open letter written by a comrade of mine titled, “Hey Brittney Cooper—Do You Realize How Politically and Morally Bankrupt It Was For You To Invoke the War Criminal Nancy Pelosi When You Shut Down A Revolutionary?” When two of us in the audience separately posed this question to Cooper, she refused repeatedly to answer the question.

But the question matters. The problem of people taking up leadership based on “identity” rather than on the content of what is being brought forward and where those ideas will lead is extremely widespread and very damaging, far beyond Brittney Cooper as an individual. This kind of identity politics prevents people from thinking critically and sets them up to get played.

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Barack Obama comes to Oakland to make you think this meatgrinder of a system works!

To the Commander-in-Chief who waged war on 7 countries, drone bombed wedding parties, presided over torture at Guantánamo, and backed Israel’s genocidal massacres in Gaza.

To chief demagogue & peddler of false "HOPE," whose MBK (My Brother’s Keeper) program is predicated on the notion that the problem is our youth, that it's their outlook and their "bad choices" that need to be reformed....

Whose Justice Department supported every single act of police violence that came before the Supreme Court, but called the youth in Baltimore “thugs” after they dared to rise up in rebellion after the murder of Freddie Gray....

To Barack Obama, we say NO MORE EXCUSES. This system has enslaved, brutalized, tortured and betrayed Black people for 400 years! Your system can’t be REFORMED, it must be OVERTHROWN!

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Booker T Washington–Style House Slave and the Line Behind Jay Z's Power Move
(Whose line is it anyway?)

Booker T. Washington is known for proposing—and fighting for, including through the establishment of HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities)—a certain way that a recently enslaved and systematically oppressed people could become active members of society and to rise above the muck of the being deemed by birth less than human. He stressed that Black social mobility had to be approached by not messing with the white man's power but by striving to be just like them.

Recently, Jay Z pimped off of Colin Kaepernick's selfless resistance and then threw Kap under the bus when he declared, "We are past kneeling" and was featured in pictures with Roger Goodell, lead commissioner of the NFL. It's a giant power move that required distancing himself from anything too radical for the league – i.e.: athletes using their platform to call out the way this system's police kill Black and Brown people daily, all while portraying them as animal-like “thugs.”

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Excerpts from a Daily Cal op-ed:
Berkeley needs to stand up to fascist ideas
by Rafael Kadaris

Over the last two years, pro-Trump fascists have attacked Revolution Books in Berkeley and even threatened to burn it down. This past Sunday, Sept. 1, pro-Trump protesters once again attempted to march on our bookstore but were prevented from doing so by a defiant and joyous counter-protest.

The call for their “No to Marxism” protest said, “Revolution Books is a communist anti-American store.” Innocent as charged. Revolution Books is the intellectual, cultural and political center of a movement for an actual revolution. At the heart of our store is the new communism brought forward by Bob Avakian—a further development of Marxism and an even more scientific and liberating understanding of the world and how it can be radically changed.

We will not be intimidated by these anti-communist protesters. At the same time, these threats must be taken seriously. This fascism is not a sideshow or something that can be voted away, but it is deeply rooted in this system—it can and is “happening here.”...

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On the cold-blooded police murder of Willie McCoy in Vallejo

This System Has No Future For Youth, But The Revolution DOES

This system has enslaved, brutalized, tortured, and betrayed Black people for 400 years! They have NEVER valued Black lives, except as labor to mercilessly exploit in building up the wealth of this country. And now, because this capitalist system has moved so much industrial work to places where they can pay people even less and make even more profit—and because Black people in racist America have always been last-hired and first-fired—this system has no jobs and no future for millions of people besides a jail cell or a police bullet. And they patrol whole neighborhoods like an occupying army, treating people like Willie McCoy as nothing but a “problem,” to be caged or killed off.

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Fascists and Pelosians Have No Right to Condemn Anybody...

Blaming "the Benjamins" Whitewashes Reality: The U.S. Backs Israel Because It Is an Enforcer for the U.S. Empire

Basic point number 1: Donald Trump said there were “good people” among the murderous fascist mob chanting “Jews will not replace us” in Charlottesville, Virginia. His regime has legitimized Nazis and created a climate that produced the most lethal anti-Semitic massacre in U.S. history, the mass killing at a Pittsburgh synagogue last October. Any leading figure who can uphold, or tolerate, or “reach across the aisle” to a fascist regime like that has very obviously forfeited any right to speak on who and what is anti-Semitic. So those people should shut up.

But point number 2: No amount of Benjamins ($100 bills) buys or sells strategic allies for this bloody-jawed empire. All the conspiracy theories about how the Israel lobby represents—as Omar insisted in a follow-up tweet—“allegiance to a foreign country” channel the outrage people in this country and around the world feel at Israel’s genocidal crimes against the Palestinian people into looking at the world through the lens of what is in the national interest of the United States! And when you look at the world through that lens, you are on your way to complicity with the ongoing crimes of an empire built on genocide, slavery, and wars of empire.

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From Revolution Club, Los Angeles:

The Green New Deal: Sustainable Snake Oil for a Green American Empire

The Green New Deal is not only an utterly ridiculous delusion, it’s a program for an American chauvinist “better business plan.” It promises a complete reconfiguration of the American economy without confronting the reality that things are produced through vast and interconnected global networks of exploitation, and it promises Americans better distribution of the spoils gained from that exploitation.

The problem isn’t that we need a better business plan for a Green American Empire. The problem is this system of capitalism-imperialism that’s driving the destruction of the planet.

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From our readers:

Reform vs Revolution at a West Coast Climate Conference

Members of the Revolution Club, LA went to a conference at UC Irvine called Fire and Ice: The Shifting Narrative of Climate Change. The conference, attended by about 500 people, featured well known activists and authors against climate change like Bill McKibben, initiator of 350.org; Elizabeth Kolbert, author of The Sixth Extinction; and Nathaniel Rich of the New York Times.

Through our interventions and impact, we repolarized to where a central question at the conference was reform or revolution. Various speakers felt compelled to speak to that question from the stage, and our interventions drew clear lines that repelled some and drew in others who were either curious or appreciative of the sharpening of the terms.

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“The Arc of the Moral Universe Is Long, But It Bends Towards Justice.”

Bullshit!

This System Has Enslaved, Betrayed Black People for 400 Years!

We Need an ACTUAL Revolution to Emancipate ALL Humanity!

If ever a history brings out in vivid color that where there is oppression, there will be resistance, it is the history of Black people in America: a history of over 400 years of the most vicious, brutal and cruel oppression, from slavery, through Jim Crow lynchings and segregation, to today’s mass incarceration, police murder and brutality, with an open white supremacist back in the White House... and a history of heroic resistance and rebellion that has rocked this system on its heels and inspired people the world over, from slave rebellions to the Civil Rights Movement and Black Liberation struggles to today’s fights against police terror and mass incarceration.

If it was just a question of courage, of determination, and of sacrifice, Black people, and many oppressed people all over the world, would be liberated by now.

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Standing Up Against Trump’s National Emergency & Calling Bullshit on American Chauvinism and Unprincipled Attacks on RevCom

We went right up against the imperialist chauvinism of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA). We called out how, by placing their focus on health care, education, and housing for people in the U.S., they are just fighting for a bigger share for Americans of the wealth America extracts through vicious exploitation and plunder from the sweatshops of Bangladesh to the starvation in Yemen to the mass rapes and civil war in Congo and beyond. In contrast, we are fighting for—and what humanity needs—is an actual revolution to overthrow this system of global imperialism and bring about a radically new world for all of humanity.

This got under people’s skin in a good way.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/586/fundraising-for-tour-en.html

Thousands Raised...Many Thousands to Go...
Donors speak out about why they gave to The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

| Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us

 

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour has started in Los Angeles, as the start of a national Tour going across this country. There have been events in different cities to kick off the Tour that raised funds, and send-off parties for volunteers heading to Los Angeles, where funds were raised. The call to donate financial support for the Tour has already brought some significant donations that indicate the real, if beginning, potential for very broad support for this Tour. This includes people who have given matching donations—one for $2,000 if others would match it—and a number who agreed to sustain the Tour on a monthly basis. There are others who have agreed to donate food for the volunteers going on the Tour, and some who have made things to be sold to generate funds for the Tour.

The many thousands of dollars raised so far is just a very small portion of what is going to be needed to support this Tour, and sustain and grow the movement for revolution, organizing thousands now and impacting the whole society that this Tour is setting out to do.

Here is the basic truth. Bob Avakian (BA) emphasizes in Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, Networks of people, working together to spread the word about and organize people into the revolution, need to be built, and expanded, in all parts of the country—and linked together.” Very importantly, this includes building up financial support now for the Tour as part of that process. There can be no revolution without financial support. There will be no revolution without organization of people of all strata, networks of people who are an essential part of the strategy for an actual revolution.

Many thousands donating now—including many people who are just hearing about the need and possibility for an actual revolution for the first time—will make it possible for this Tour to shake things up at this crucial moment in history, when so much hangs in the balance for humanity.

The statements on this page from donors give a living sense of the different ways people are seeing the importance of contributing by donating to the Tour, and calling on others to join them in this historic effort.

Internationalist fundraiser for Revolution Tour:
Great Food—Great Company—Great Cause

Posted May 27, 2019

From readers:

It was an afternoon befitting the invitation for “an internationalist feast to support the National Tour to Get Organized for an Actual Revolution.” Guests were greeted by large posters from revcom.us of the “5 STOPS” and BAsics 3:2 as they walked into the garden patio filled with the sweet scent of jasmine flowers and delicious home cooked world cuisine. There were trays of tahdig (aka Persian soul food), pita pocket chicken sandwiches, Iranian rice, tamales, a big pot of Champurrado, freshly grilled BBQ chicken, and even a potato salad with the word “Internationalism” spelled out on top, and much more.

A real added internationalist treat was a rich mixture of melodic accents from various parts of the world in animated conversations, infusing a couple hours of intense and lively debate and discussion. People wrote out “internationalist messages to the National Tour” on a message board in Farsi, Amharic, Spanish and English, some of which read: “Saludos y abrazos a los valientes camaradas de la gira!”; “Nos urge una REVOLUCION pero YA!”; “Revolution needs communication & love needs sacrifice”; and “Wishing you much success.”

We made our goal of raising $1K from this event (a total of $1,102 with pledges and cash)... Read more

An Internationalist Benefit Dinner for the Revolution Tour

Posted May 20, 2019

From a reader:

Over $1,400 was raised at the “Celebrate Internationalism” benefit dinner for the Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour. $1,200 came from the event on May 11 and the rest from donations and new sustainers. About 30 people came, including some new people recently met during the 12-day effort in spreading the Points of Attention (POAs). The food was delicious and international—Afghan, Iranian, Palestinian, and Mexican restaurant owners contributed food in addition to food brought by supporters of the movement for revolution. Three languages were spoken—Farsi, Spanish, and English... Read more

Stoop Sale Fundraising for the National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

From a reader:

Last weekend, some of us organized a stoop sale in response to the National Get Organized for An ACTUAL Revolution Tour call for fundraising. (Stoops are the stairs outside a house.) We’re counting on this stoop sale to spur you and others like you to raise funds for the national tour.

We would like to make two challenges:

  1. Match our $1,000 by Sunday, May 26. Of the $1,349 we raised at the sale, we decided to put $1,000 toward a matching donation to challenge others to contribute and double the funds for the Tour. (The rest of the money will go towards promotion and other expenses.)
  2. Organize a garage sale or flea market. Set a goal and raise money to meet the Tour’s May goal of $20,000!

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From a Mental Health Professional and Supporter of the Revolution...

Step Up to My $1000 Challenge to Support the National Revolution Tour

[Editor’s note: This matching donation challenge was met by May 1]

I will double your donation to the National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour, up to $1,000, received by May 4. The National Get Organized for an Actual Revolution Tour goal: to spread the word and bring people into the process of building for an actual revolution.

I have searched my heart and soul, and either I choose to accept to live in a world based on heinous brutality and crimes against humanity in the US and around the world, or I stand up and fight for revolution. It is through studying the scientific work of Bob Avakian, that I am convinced that the only way out of this hell, is through a revolution that digs up this system's rotten roots and brings into being a whole new system that is not built on exploitation, but on the needs of the people and the highest aspirations of humanity...

Read entire statement

From an immigrant store-owner:

We have been fooled and given false promises. For 2 years we were told to wait for the Mueller report. We need the power of the people and we need to be in the streets. Barr is Trump’s DOJ, Barr works for Trump and not for the people. It’s wrong that we waited and trusted the government. Both the Democrats and the Republicans have been joining to create illusions for the people, like the Mueller investigation.

They make people passive, to string people along to believe there is always a next step in the process of the system in order to get rid of Trump. There’s not going to be change through laws, and there’s not going to be change from the Democrats, and there is not going to be a change through normal channels. I feel this is the time people must wake up. These times are more dangerous. Trump is a fascist, backed by Miller, and white supremacists. Trump is out for revenge. This is just like Hitler. I feel we need a real revolution. I feel it is important to support this tour because it is spreading revolution and is organizing for revolution. I am making a monthly donation and encourage others to do so.

From the Revolution Club, NYC:

A Beautiful Celebration and Send-Off Fundraising Party for the Tour Volunteers

“I’m going because... we need a different world... and people don’t actually know... there is a Party, there is Leadership, and there is a plan and strategy to make this real and that’s what we’re bringing to people, the fact that there can be a different world. That it’s completely unnecessary how people are living right now and that it can be radically changed... a lot of good people are being fooled into thinking that these different ways of acting are what we need, whether it’s the electoral process or thinking about yourself and approaching the world from yourself out... so I’m really glad to be a part of this and be a part of those who are trailblazing and actually bringing this strategy to people who need it.”

—volunteer for the Tour at the March 7 Send-Off Fundraiser in New York City

On Thursday, March 7, a beautiful celebration and send-off fundraising party took place at Revolution Books in Harlem for some of the volunteers traveling to Los Angeles to take part in the first leg of the yearlong Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour. The nationwide Tour kicks off in mid-March and will be traveling across the country to put revolution before millions and organize thousands into it. It was a fun evening hosted by the Revolution Club, who overall led in working and struggling with many others to make it happen. From choosing the songs on the playlist that bumped all night (which, among those picking the songs, involved important grappling with what it means to have a lively culture that is also uplifting and not degrading), to the different people who cooked and bought food or went to restaurants to get items donated, to the live performance and the jam session at the end, the evening truly came together in a powerful way. A dramatic reading of the Call for the Tour was done to the beat of a drum and the audience clapping their hands (this was a creative idea from a newer Revolution Club member).

The centerpiece of the evening was getting to hear from the volunteers who spoke with tremendous heart for humanity and with science and passion for changing the world. Each spoke to why they were volunteering, what this means and why it matters. One of the volunteers said, “I’m going because we need an actual revolution” and later referenced Bob Avakian’s point that the question “for whom and for what” are we doing what we’re doing is important, that all this has to be about the emancipation of humanity. The volunteer said she was throwing in on this “for the seven billion people on this planet who need this revolution. That’s why I’m doing this and that’s why we should all be doing this... for the millions who are slaving away in Bangladesh and the children in Yemen that are dying from malnourishment; this is ‘for whom’ we are doing this for...”

An urgent challenge for the evening was to raise $1,000 towards the $15,000 that is needed nationally by March 15. A Revolution Club member worked and persevered with some donors to the Tour who weren’t able to attend to write statements to express why they had donated and to challenge others to support. In doing this, it was important to continually go back to the Call for the Tour and how all this has everything to do with making revolution and emancipating humanity. These statements were read by Revolution Club members from the stage and this inspired others in the room to donate on the spot or to make a pledge. The audience was made up of people in the arts, students, people who’d recently met the movement for revolution, along with longtime supporters. There were a number of people from all around world as well.

Throughout the night there were updates on how much had been raised and how close it was to achieving the goal. During the mingling, some of the people who had already donated, or pledged to sustain, and understood the importance of the Tour, stepped up to make the case to others to donate. Through the evening a sense of responsibility among many came alive—to raise much-needed funds for the Tour and to get NYC ready for when the Tour comes to town. At the end of the night the goal of $1,000 was reached.

As the Call for the Tour puts it: “Without hype, absent fundamental change, without revolution, the future of humanity and the planet hangs in the balance.... Make a Profound Difference and DONATE to the possibility of something that could get beyond this horror and radically change the world.” The send-off fundraising party was a beginning step in making that real.

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

Read the Call to the Tour »

Checks can be sent to:
RCP Publications, Box 3486, Merchandise Mart
Chicago, IL 60654-0486 (Mark for the Tour)

This is a statement from someone who donated $2,000 and called on people to match it—other donors matched his challenge.

Hey what’s up. This is Mark from The Resistance Company in front of Trump Towers on the beach. I just want to say I’m donating to the Revolution Club. They are going to be touring the U.S. in an effort to transform society. And we need now more than ever to have society transformed. We NEED a REVOLUTION! Fuck you, Donald Trump. New York hates you!

This Revolution Tour is significant—it has real significance. We’ve got talk of the release of the Mueller report, about freshman Congress members’ proposals, and all of the 2020 Democratic candidates. NO CHANGES. Now here comes the Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour: THAT is a universal call, for HUMANITY, not for identity politics or a political machine. It’s a challenge to the comfort zone of normalization. The Call for the National Revolution Tour has real depth to it, and front and center is Bob Avakian and what he is saying. How to produce change? How else would you do it? The Tour is creating an environment for this change, not martyrdom, but real change.

How urgent is this tour? Trump wants to drop a bomb on Iran and threatens all the people on the Korean Peninsula with nuclear weapons. The Tour is going to the rural areas too! Look at the damage to people’s psyches in the rural areas, the opioid epidemic, even with protests against the companies fueling this epidemic... still, all this keeps going on and an astounding number of people have died. And nothing is being done. But the Call and Revolution Tour is pushing on, pushing forward. I am someone who can’t wait, and I support this Revolution Tour because I am a grandparent and I am concerned about the future, for my grandchildren and everybody’s grandchildren. I can give $50 this month, and we’ll keep talking about donations each month....

A supporter of the Tour from California

Hello Chicago Revolution Club,

I really like to put the small amount of money I have to good use, and, in my opinion, there is no better use for it in today’s troubled world than to support all of you at the Chicago Revolution Club.

The vanguard movement of the Revolutionary Communist Party’s new synthesis... is what gives me solid hope for the future. It is the ONLY answer to ending the centuries-old nightmares of the inhumanity of the existing system that I see as a scientific thinking person.

Knowing that I am doing my small part in supporting the fearless integrity and scientific foundation of the Revolution Club gives me a warm feeling inside because I KNOW you are at the very leading edge of what needs to be done to slice through the lies and misconceptions perpetuating the horrific crimes happening every minute of every day all around us and all around the world.

NO, it doesn’t have to be that way. And so, I am very happy to do my part for the cross-country Tour starting in LA to show thousands that a determined, scientifically based revolution IS the only way forward here in the spring of 2019. We are AWAKE to MAKE history, instead of allowing others to force nightmares upon us.

I am compelled to support the Tour because this is a crucial time in human history, a moment in which human rights are eroded at an alarming rate—and eroded, period! We are facing a crossroads at which fascism could seriously consolidate or people can be swayed by imperialists with an American chauvinist agenda who are appealing and appeasing with false promise of something different. The Revolution Club has enormous potential to break through both these forces and win people over to critical thinking and the viable, necessary strategy of Bob Avakian and the Party. And we must support and enable this with everything we’ve got. I’m calling on people to match my $200 donation. [This donation was matched.]

From a high school student who is an intern at Revolution Books:

I think it’s very moving because the people who are going on the Tour are doing this for humanity, not just for themselves. Especially at a time when people think nothing can be done to make a change. And even though it’s national, it should have reach beyond the U.S. so people around the world know about it. So people should be open-minded and listen and learn from the Tour. “That’s interesting, I never thought about it that way.” That’s how you make change, open yourself to understand more. And without the support of people, it wouldn’t even make sense to have the Tour. It’s necessary for people to support and help out in any way they can. A donation or give time, let’s work as a unit to make this work.

 

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/592/what-people-are-saying-en.html

What People Are Saying about the Tour

| revcom.us

 

From a Reader from Iran:

An Internationalist Salute and Call to Donate to the National Revolution Tour

I want to send an internationalist salute to the National Tour to Get Organized for an Actual Revolution and call for everyone to support it, to get involved with this all out struggle for a better world.

The present social and economic system we live under has become totally unbearable for billions of people throughout the world. We are also at a stage of human development when every conscious human being needs to seriously ask if our survival could be sustained in this capitalist-imperialist world order.

The urgent question begging for an urgent answer is whether we can tolerate the cries of tens of millions of dying, exploited and disease-ridden children? Tolerate the rapid destruction of the environment? Tolerate past and continual genocidal wars (direct or proxy) of the imperialists—invasions, occupations, bombings and even the possibility of nuclear war? Tolerate the everlasting white supremacy, mass incarceration, police brutality and murder of Black and Latino youth? Tolerate militarization of the border, cries of tens of millions of refugees, children ripped from parents and put in cages? Tolerate the misogyny that crushes women’s bodies and dreams generation after generation? Tolerate the normalization of outright fascism with the Trump/Pence regime? Tolerate all this that non-stop victimizes millions of people every minute of every day? Or...

In his truly breathtaking talk Why We Need an Actual Revolution and How We Can Really Make Revolution, Bob Avakian (BA) keenly and seriously challenge those who are fed up with such monstrous capitalist-imperialist horrors to get organized and get rid of such a rotten and outdated system, to make revolution to replace it with a new and much better world—one dreamed and longed for by billions worldwide. There is no other way. I’ve watched this film many times and feel everyone should see it...

Read full statement

From Isabel Cardenas

The young people in the Revolution Club are focused on a better world for humanity.  They aren’t just thinking about people in this country, but also those in the entire world.  They are working for revolution because they are very courageous, and it takes committed people to carry out this National Revolution Tour.  I believe in what they are doing—organizing people—it takes time and it takes support.  These young people are tireless and need our support!  I say this from the bottom of my heart: When I was a young activist, I used to “hear things” about the Revolutionary Communist Party such as: “if those people give you literature, don’t take it...”—but I have come to know them, and I admire and respect them.  I also have heard some activists say that the RCP is “too radical....” And what comes to mind is that “If the Germans and Jews would have been just as radical during the Nazi period, millions of lives could have been saved.”  Nobody is as courageous as the RCP.  Everyone should start working with them and, most importantly, also donate to the National Revolution Tour.  It’s a worthy cause—just think of the cost for flyers, posters, travel, food and more.  Those with thousands of dollars should donate thousands.  I am able to donate hundreds.  Please go to the revcom.us website and commit to donate $50 or $100 a month.  This tour stands for the people who have no voice.  They are out to help humanity.  I believe in what they are doing, working for revolution.  Bob Avakian has the plan... what is needed is for people to organize themselves and study this plan. 

I am in! You should also join and support this worthy cause!

Isabel Cardenas
American-Salvadoran / USA Citizen
And Community Activist since 1960

From Carol Downer

Funding ourselves

May 3: Last week, I had the pleasure of hosting the Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour at my home for dinner. We had roasted chicken with coleslaw, mashed potatoes and gravy and hot rolls that I purchased from Von’s. Additionally, I purchased the ingredients for and prepared corn muffins and potato salad. Tour members helped me set out the dishes and finish up preparations. Other volunteers brought salad makings and an after-dinner pastry.

The tour members had organized several actions to spread the word about how grassroots activism to push for a revolution would be more effective than putting our efforts into bringing about social change through voting for social reforms. They were righteously tired and hungry, so the first order of business was to eat heartily. They were interested in my experiences in visiting Iran after the Iranian people had thrown out the Shah, a U.S.-supported ruthless dictator who commanded the fifth-largest army in the world in an almost bloodless revolution. So, I shared the exhilaration and joy that I had in being in a free country; I witnessed in Iran how a brave and resolute people had overthrown tyranny.* Then all of us shared the events of the day and enjoyed our political solidarity which cemented our friendship.

I encourage others to provide this kind of concrete support to the “Get Organized” tour as it goes around the country to stir people and challenge them to throw off their cynicism and join in the effort to mount demands for revolutionary change. Although I spent a few dollars and I devoted some time to shop for and prepare the food, the meal cost far less than if we had sat down at a restaurant or ordered take-out, and we were able to take as long as we wanted to eat our meal and socialize. Pooling our limited resources makes them go a long way. No time wasted applying for grants. No strings!

No one is going to fund us except ourselves, and why would we even want them to? Even the most benevolent funder wants you to submit proposals, file reports and evaluations. Also, that evening we created through our collective efforts a democratic, egalitarian event that celebrated our diversity in class, age and ethnicity and reinforced our revolutionary fervor. After the dishes were cleared, washed and put away, we ended the evening stronger. That strength came from ourselves, not from outside funding.


1. In 1978, millions and millions of Iranian people, from virtually all walks of life with a wide range of political viewpoints, rose up against the hated Shah and his regime, which was overthrown in February 1979. Millions had been awakened to political life, and their awakening and struggle continued in different ways after the revolution. However, by the early 1980s reactionary Islamic fundamentalists led by the Ayatollah Khomeini had brutally suppressed their opponents, which included Iranian communists, and were able to consolidate political power and establish the repressive theocracy that still rules Iran today. [back]

 

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

Read the Call to the Tour »

Checks can be sent to:
RCP Publications, Box 3486, Merchandise Mart
Chicago, IL 60654-0486 (Mark for the Tour)

From Reverend Cecil L. “Chip” Murray:

April 17, 2019

Dear Friends,

I am referring you to open your minds and hearts to a message that has been begging for attention for 400 hundred years. I have personally listened to their presentation of the great concept they are embarking on, and suggest you do the same for their National Tour to Organize for an ACTUAL Revolution.

I am aware that there are many people in America who oppose communism on certain matters of great importance. I ask you to examine one matter which is birthed in communism, and that is what links us in the revolutionary need to emancipate humanity.

I am a Christian and not a communist nor am I an advocate of communism. However I commend all those who undertake the cause of justice and righteousness, such as opposing abuse of power by police and law enforcement, and opposing mass incarceration and massive homelessness. In Christian tradition, it is believed that “you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.” Therefore you should engage their message and decide for yourself as to its merit for support.

As part of this, you may want to review and engage the film by Bob Avakian, the founder and designer of the new communism titled Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution.

Thank you for your attention to this matter.

Sincerely,

Reverend Cecil L. “Chip” Murray

From Fr. Luis Barrios, NYC:

“The revolution is not coming from the sky, sent in by God. We have to put together this revolution...”

 

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/opening-up-debate-about-reform-vs-revolution-en.html

Opening Up Debate About Reform vs. Revolution in Extreme Times... The Need to Really Organize for Revolution

| revcom.us

 

The National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour has been “disturbing the air” with revolution—at community colleges, the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), on local radio and nationally, with an important interview on The Young Turks, now viewed by hundreds of thousands.

We have made important advances in appreciating and representing both the sharpness and the whole of what we need to be stepping with, impacting broadly with the reality that this system can’t be reformed and must be overthrown, up against the reformist dead ends and mental shackles... and organizing people on that basis. The simplicity of the approach captured by 5-2-6, the 5 Stops, the 2 choices that these horrors continue on and on or we MAKE revolution, and the 6 Points of Attention, has been helpful with messaging and very attractive and accessible broadly. 

We are also learning more about the need and potential for a genuine societal debate about reform vs. revolution. Because of the extreme acuteness in the situation, many people are deeply agonizing, but have never heard a radical revolutionary answer and want to hear this and discuss and debate it, with us and with each other. Posed sharply before us now: work to do, and real problems to solve with those who have stepped forward, on how people get organized – in particular into Revolution Clubs on the basis of the Six Points of Attention for the Revolution.

Word of the Tour reached hundreds of thousands of people through an interview by Cenk Uygur of The Young Turks with Andy Zee, a member of the Tour and also spokesperson for Revolution Books and co-initiator of Refuse Fascism. The sharpness of message and content—exchanges and struggle between Zee and Uygur on whether revolution is needed, whether Trump is a product of the system or outside it—was provocative and polarizing. Within a few days, over 200,000 people watched this excerpted clip online, further intrigued by the title provided by the show, “The End of Trump.”

More than a few supported the idea of revolution in the comments section, some giving thumbs up to Zee’s comments, with many arguing that revolution goes too far, that we should work to reform the system, but also seeing the limits of what’s being done in response to Trump. Concern about Trump was more widely felt and expressed. At the same time, indicating this touched a nerve: Alex Jones, a fascist provocateur with a wide broadcast audience and backing from powerful forces, hosted 20 minutes of what could only be called a semi-lunatic rant including slander and misinformation, attacking this exchange, and both Uygur and Zee. In the face of such attacks, it is critical to advance the goals of the revolution, bringing forward new forces and defending those who represent for the revolution and lead.

At UCLA and community colleges throughout the city, along with the 5-2-6, we’ve made announcements in classrooms and cafeterias, challenging people to come debate and discuss the question of reform vs. revolution, centered around this quote from Bob Avakian (BA):

There is nothing more unrealistic than the idea of reforming this system into something that would come anywhere near being in the interests of the great majority of people and ultimately of humanity as a whole. 

Centered around this and other quotes from BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian, we’ve had several mass debates where students have been struggling with each other over reform and revolution, bringing in the actual history of the U.S., and the horrors that billions on the planet suffer from because of this system: the brutal exploitation, the wars for empire, destruction of the planet, and now, deep concern about the looming loss of the right to abortion. There’s been polarization and beginning transformation with people stepping into debate who by the end have said, “I’m arguing for things I didn’t even know I thought.” 

On Saturday, Part II of the film of BA’s speech, Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, will be shown near where Nipsey Hussle was killed, in South Central LA, being built city-wide, including the colleges. On Monday, May 20, there is an event of the Tour at UCLA titled “You Think You’re Woke, But You’re Sleepwalking Through a Nightmare... This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!” which is being built for throughout the city as part of the Tour. All these represent the metaphorical “crossing of the tracks” where people from the neighborhoods of the oppressed and community colleges come to and join with those from an elite campus, to engage and interact with the tour, and vice versa.

Promoting this was an interview that aired on The Michael Slate Show with Lenny Wolff and Tala Deloria. Telling her story of transforming her thinking and life journey, from wanting to be a stockbroker to becoming a revolutionary, Deloria, a student at UCLA and a member of the Tour, was compelling on choices confronting young people and why she made the choice she did. In conjunction with Wolff, who cast these choices in a wider sweep and also told his own story, they posed questions that touched the soul in an almost “existential” dimension, what is one’s life to be, when a radically different world is urgently necessary and possible, and what those choices and journeys look like.

We have put to people from the beginning the fact that they are needed NOW to build this revolution—up against all the other programs and bullshit that fall way short of what’s needed... to change the whole political atmosphere in society, as part of getting closer to the time we can actually make revolution. And that they need to be part of solving the problems of the revolution, wielding what we do have in terms of the strategy for revolution, the leadership in BA, and a concrete plan for how society can be organized after we make revolution. We have begun to more frontally put forth the need for people who agree with the Points of Attention to join the Revolution Clubs.

Over these last few weeks, many people have begun to turn their faces to revolution, with small bunches of people seriously considering joining the Revolution Club. There is urgent work before us, and problems to solve: How do we forge Revolution Clubs on a different footing and of a new type which are envisioned in Bob Avakian’s speech from last summer: Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution? How do we cohere the people who have been provoked, challenged and inspired by the National Tour into a force—up against all the bullshit and dead ends in society, even as people are sorting out what they think... and inspiring and attracting others in an overall collective process? How is this whole national movement for revolution led through the digital web presence: the website, revcom.us integrated with social media?

These are the discussions we have been having, formally and informally, among ourselves and increasingly with those stepping forward. This is what needs to be grappled with as we further develop the plan for a real breakthrough in impacting society with revolution and accumulating forces for revolution with the plan for the June 8/9 weekend: a Weekend of Revolution, to put revolution on the map in LA... reverberating to, impacting and inspiring people nationwide.

These are problems all of us are needed to be part of going to work on. Write to us at revolution.reports@yahoo.com with your own questions, reflections and experiences. To give this grappling and process the necessary context, here is an excerpt from BA’s speech, Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution:

Spreading the word, particularly as this is done together with others in a planned, systematic way, can be an important step in joining the organized ranks of the revolution and taking part in the process of building the revolution. A crucial next step in making this revolution real is that, “Thousands need to get organized into the ranks of the revolution now, while millions are being influenced in favor of this revolution.” Getting organized into the ranks of the revolution means acting together with others in a unified way, as an organized force, guided by the strategic plan and leadership for the revolution, building the revolution among broader masses of people, while also getting deeper into the principles, methods, and goals of this revolution, the basics of which are concentrated in the “Points of Attention for the Revolution.” A key form of revolutionary organization are the Revolution Clubs, which live by, propagate, and fight for the “Points of Attention.” The core of the Revolution Clubs are people deeply committed to revolution who closely follow the leadership of the Revolutionary Communist Party, which has the basis, in the new communism, to provide overall leadership for the revolution; but the Revolution Clubs also need to reach out to and involve growing numbers of people who are new to the revolution. The Revolution Clubs are a means through which “people can take part in and powerfully represent for the revolution in an organized way, as they learn more about the revolution and advance toward joining the Party.”

Networks of people, working together to spread the word about and organize people into the revolution, need to be built, and expanded, in all parts of the country—and linked together. In areas where the Party and the Revolution Clubs have not yet established an organized presence, or in circumstances where people have not yet come into direct contact with this organized presence of the revolution but have become aware of the core principles and goals of the revolution, they should reach out to and involve others they can draw forward around those core principles and goals; they should link up with the central leadership of the revolution for assistance and direction in organizing a Revolution Club among the people they are bringing into the revolution, on the basis of the “Points of Attention for the Revolution,” which are included in the pamphlet HOW WE CAN WIN, and are posted at revcom.us. A crucial “connecting link” in all this is the Party’s website revcom.us and newspaper Revolution, which “sharply expose the crimes of this system, scientifically analyze why it cannot be reformed, and give guidance and direction for people to work in a unified way for revolution.” In everything we do, it needs to be clearly kept in mind, and boldly put forward to people, that, whatever part of the country we are in, and whatever the size of our forces at any given time, we are doing all this as part of a national movement, together with people in other parts of the country, aiming to impact all of society and building a revolution to overthrow the whole system, with the whole world in mind.

 

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

What Is 5-2-6?
The 5 STOPS, the 2 Choices, and the 6 Points of Attention

Read more

Andy Zee interviewed by The Young Turks' Cenk Uygur about organizing for an actual revolution, and the urgency of driving out the Trump/Pence fascist regime

Tala Deloria and Lenny Wolff talk about The National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour on The Michael Slate Show

The "Get Organized for an Actual Revolution National Tour" & the Revolution Club, LA Present:
A Weekend of Revolution June 8 & 9, 2019

Read more

Debate at UCLA on "America Was Never Great"

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/internationalist-benefit-dinner-for-revolution-tour-en.html

An Internationalist Benefit Dinner for the Revolution Tour

| revcom.us

 

From a reader:

Over $1,400 was raised at the “Celebrate Internationalism” benefit dinner for the Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour. $1,200 came from the event on May 11 and the rest from donations and new sustainers. About 30 people came, including some new people recently met during the 12-day effort in spreading the Points of Attention (POAs). The food was delicious and international—Afghan, Iranian, Palestinian, and Mexican restaurant owners contributed food in addition to food brought by supporters of the movement for revolution. Three languages were spoken—Farsi, Spanish, and English.

At the short program, we listened to Bob Avakian’s New Year’s Message and watched Noche Diaz at the April 28 LA picnic for the tour. A Revolution Club member spoke about what the 5-2-6 is. This was followed by comments and some questions from the audience.

An immigrant from India had heard about the dinner at the Bay Area Book Festival the weekend before. He said these points (POAs), which he liked, talked about different political questions. But what about the economic foundations? How do you see that? This led to a round of enthusiastic discussion.

An environmental activist, who was recently met during the 5-2-6 push, spoke with urgency about the emergency situation facing the planet and humanity. She cited the UN report that there are only 12 years left to prevent irreversible damage from climate change and that report came out last year, so there are only 11 years left! This brought alive “Stop Capitalism-Imperialism from Destroying Our Planet!”—one of the 5 STOPS. She also talked about the urgent need for a radical change and not relying on the government and the system, which is the cause of this and all other problems.

An immigrant talked passionately about one of the six Points of Attention and raised an idea of fundraising in the next period for the Tour. She said:

“I think that women can organize a fundraising picnic in the Mission District of SF (an immigrant neighborhood) to raise funds for the Tour to Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution, by making the food, getting donations of food, and spreading the word. I think the theme of this picnic should be a ‘World Without Borders,’ based on POA #3. This is more important than ever, when you have the head of the country whipping up belligerent, intense hatred against immigrants, sending more military to the border, and calling for building the wall, and the fear among the immigrants is intensifying. But we need to overcome this fear, and ‘ganar la liberated’ (win liberty), because the only things we have to lose is our chains. We need a fundamental change (cambia profundo), we need revolution and it won’t be easy (no es facil).”

Then there was this comment from the father of a young Latino man killed by the police in the Bay Area:

“I liked the fact that (POA #1) mentions the highest interests of people. When the system says justice for all, they don’t really mean it. They profile you just for walking in the wrong neighborhood. Some people are just out for personal gain. Law enforcement only want to make themselves look good. And some people use revolution for personal gain and then turn around and run for mayor. I like that this is about fighting for equality of all languages and cultures (POA #3), and not just about fighting for only your own people. This is one way the system can divide the people up when we should be fighting for each other.”

People coming to the dinner were very unleashed by the ethos expressed by the POAs and the comments and the discussions. Many stayed after the program, and hung out. More donations were made. Some talked more about the fundraising projects suggested for the next period, like the picnic in the Mission on the third weekend of June and the garage sale on May 26. Others participated in lively discussion in groups. All this continued into the night.

 

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

 

 

"This is Bob Avakian, Chairman of the
Revolutionary Communist Party, with a New Year's message—A Call To REVOLUTION..."

▶ Listen
▶ Read

▶ Download audio
▶ Download Flier
Download Centerfold Poster:   PDF | JPG

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/stoop-sale-fundraising-for-revolution-tour-en.html

Stoop Sale Fundraising for the National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

| revcom.us

 

From a reader:

Last weekend, some of us organized a stoop sale in response to the National Get Organized for An ACTUAL Revolution Tour call for fundraising. (Stoops are the stairs outside a house.) We’re counting on this stoop sale to spur you and others like you to raise funds for the national tour.

We would like to make two challenges:

  1. Match our $1,000 by Sunday, May 26. Of the $1,349 we raised at the sale, we decided to put $1,000 toward a matching donation to challenge others to contribute and double the funds for the Tour. (The rest of the money will go towards promotion and other expenses.)
  2. Organize a garage sale or flea market. Set a goal and raise money to meet the Tour’s May goal of $20,000!

Here’s what we did:

The sale was in a progressive, middle class neighborhood near a farmer’s market—a place with lots of foot traffic.

Initially, we put out a call to people we know to donate items, and in the last two weeks really strived to get a lot of used items to sell. Lots of friends, and friends of friends, donated items. We posted brightly colored flyers in the neighborhood the week before the stoop sale and about 15 shopkeepers let us post the flyer inside and/or outside their stores. Some people baked cookies. We also advertised it on Craig’s List and a couple of neighborhood websites that list stoop sales to get the word out as broadly as possible. The day of the sale, one person went to the farmers’ market on the corner with leaflets to invite people to the stoop sale.

We set up books donated by Revolution Books on half of the stoop and eight tables in the front yard and along the sidewalk packed with donated items: kitchenware, glassware, jewelry, meat grinder (vintage from the 1950s, which sold!), and other small appliances, African masks, children’s toys, clothes, electronics, shoes (including three pairs of tap shoes), hats, knickknacks, plus tons of clothing in boxes and hanging on two clothing racks.

We had a palm card with the Points of Attention for the Revolution, to live by and fight for now, to distribute and they were a great resource. It gave people a doorway through which to learn more about this revolution, and to actually take a step through that door.

The Saturday of the stoop sale was a bright, sunny day. Many people were out and about and came over. Others came from the farmers’ market or from having seen the posters or an online listing. They bought several items or one item. Some paid for items, browsed some more, paid for a second batch of stuff, browsed some more. With each sale, we explained this was fundraising for the Tour and gave them a Points of Attention palm card. At times the sidewalk was blocked with people examining items on each table and picking clothes out of two boxes. There was a general positive attitude toward talking about revolution. People were pleasantly surprised when they realized that this wasn’t a few people doing a moving sale or some individual private thing, but a group of people doing a fundraiser for a tour getting people organized into the revolution, a real revolution. “This is cool!” While there is usually a lot of haggling at stoop sales to lower the price for an item, there was a lot less of it when people understood what this fundraiser was for. One person gave an extra $5, another $10.

Having various political buttons and T-shirts and patches also contributed to “not your ordinary” stoop sale. Some youths were excited about the political T-shirts and a Latino man bought patches in both Spanish and English against the oppression of women.

There were two hip 20-something white women (one called the other to come to the stoop sale for her opinion on clothes and they spent a long time trying things on. Good thing we had a mirror!) She said, “This sounds really interesting... but it’s not some kind of cult is it?” We showed her the POA card, and she asked about the election. She was relentless about “Well, then if not any of these—Bernie or AOC or Warren or ??? who are you voting for?” and was really intrigued by the #BEB broadsheet. She wouldn’t give her contact info but said to her friend, “This is really different and interesting. I’m going to check this out” and promised to go online to view BA film, Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution.

A mother with her child checked out every table. She was intrigued by conversations she heard around her about “revolution,” disturbed by the current state of events with Trump/Pence and very upset that even her friends were “afraid to talk” about things, “uncomfortable things,” especially racism. She said that if we don’t talk about it, how are people going to learn and change/grow. She said she speaks up when something happens that she thinks is racist, but that her friends don’t, and don’t think she should either because she is white. She thought that was very wrong and started reading the POAs and was glad to be able to talk.

Our goal was $1,000 for the weekend and we greatly exceeded that.

We have a van full of used items and are going forward. We are looking for another stoop for a second sale, preferably somewhere with another good location and lots of foot traffic. Next time we will reach out more broadly to work with more people new to the revolution. Our experience this time shows that is possible.

We hope our experience will inspire others. So, meet our challenge! Donate toward our $1,000 match by May 26 and turn it into $2,000 for the Tour. Have your own sale to raise even more funds or find other creative ways to raise money and promote the Tour. We pledge to do this as well!

 

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/ucla-may20-come-hear-the-argument-for-revolution-you-wont-get-anywhere-else-en.html

Will our skills be put in the service of ourselves or our people, keeping the world fundamentally as it is, or will it serve the revolution and the interests of humanity?

| revcom.us

 

This is an op-ed that was sent in to the Daily Bruin, student newspaper at the University of California, Los Angeles, by Tala Deloria, a member of the Revolution Club, student at UCLA, and one of the #UCLA 5.

I’ve been in this institution for 6 years. Now that my journey is coming to an end, I face many of the same anxieties (excitement?) my peers and those in previous generations faced about the uncertainty of the future and our place within it. The basic question is the same: what am I going to do with my life?

Some of us have it more figured out than others. Some of us feel like we lack agency in determining the outcome given the perilous nature of being outside of the “norm” of whiteness, maleness, heterosexuality, etc. Some of us wonder if the question is even worth asking given the looming doom of climate change. For some it’s all the above.

I came to this institution with a lot of illusions about why I got here and what I was going to do with the opportunity. I was never explicitly gung-ho about the American dream, but I thought that I was special because I “made it” when many of those around me fell by the wayside. I recognized institutional oppression but only in the liberal sense where I saw “my people” as “lacking equal opportunity.” I was set on advancing my career to give back to my community. I was going to be a stockbroker... and I ended up a revolutionary communist.

That didn’t happen overnight. It was a process where the things I learned in the classroom came together with my engagement with Bob Avakian’s works and with protesting and organizing with other revolutionaries. I learned about the real brutal history of this country and came to yearn for a world without America. I got a glimpse of what it’s like to live under the boot of this system and its merciless police. I cried every time we had to bury another Black youth and I felt that beautiful, electric rage of people fighting back politically in the streets. I came to understand the deeper dynamics of why the world is the way it is. All of this changed me. I read and debated. I challenged others and they challenged me.

Through this process I grew a fighting spirit as I felt the intolerability and unnecessariness of living this way, and I came to understand we have two choices: either we live with the world as it is, with all the horror that means for humanity, or we make revolution to overthrow the system that’s at the root of this and build something radically better on its ashes.

For years I walked through this place with a deep sense of alienation because I saw too much serenity and apathy in response to this chaotic, violent world. People without a way out dig their noses in what is, especially at an elite institution like this. Many of us are just looking to pursue our own advancement, or maybe trying to help “our people,” however we may define that, or maybe getting funneled into one reformist program or another. All of which amounts to us settling into the world as it is and accepting this as the best we can do. I don’t mean to knock Doctors without Borders or any other good-hearted attempt at changing the world, but...

My journey began years before Trump. Before Charlottesville, before the Muslim Ban, before #MeToo, before we felt the looming threat of nuclear apocalypse, of “fire and fury like the world has never seen,” even before we were told we have 10 years to save the planet. Now we look at the world we have inherited, with fascism consolidating throughout the world, with the horrors accelerating, and the choices pose themselves even more sharply.

Revolution IS our only way out, and we have a real shot to win. So for those who refuse to believe there is no alternative to the world as it is, here’s a question for you, with all the skills you’ve accumulated in this place: will this be put in the service of ourselves or our people, keeping the world fundamentally as it is, or will it serve the revolution and the interests of humanity?

The road is not easy. The stakes are nothing less than the future of the 7 billion people on this planet, and I know there are questions about violence, and how the new society will be run, about the strategy to do this, and about whether we can really defeat this imperialist giant. Don’t set these questions on the shelf. Come hear the argument for revolution you won’t get anywhere else at the speaking event Monday, May 20th: “You Think You’re Woke but... You’re Sleepwalking Through a Nightmare. This system can’t be reformed it must be overthrown,” 7 pm, Haines 118 and bring your questions. Let’s unite, debate, challenge each other. Then make your choice.

 

Tala Deloria and Lenny Wolff talk about The National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour, and about the May 20 speaking event at UCLA on The Michael Slate Show

 

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/UCLA-speaking-event-national-revolution-tour-en.html

A Speaking Event by the National Revolution Tour
UCLA May 20, 7 PM

| revcom.us

 

 

 

Download PDF for printing fliers: FRONT | BACK

 

Tala Deloria and Lenny Wolff talk about The National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour, and about the May 20 speaking event at UCLA on The Michael Slate Show

Statement from student on “Why I am coming”

I’m going to the event on Monday because I don’t have the answers. The world faces many multifaceted problems and sadly, our societies and governments haven’t kept up and addressed them, or don’t want to address them because it isn’t to the benefit of those in power. I don’t have the answers on how to end global warming, I’m not even sure it can be ended or be reversed. I’m not sure if racism, poverty, or injustice can be solved, but I know we have to try. We are in a new era of global problems, and we shouldn’t be fighting ourselves because the real enemy of our species is time, but how do we get people to realize that or begin to solve the logistics of it? I don’t have the answers, but the first steps for anyone who cares are to seek them, struggle internally with the possibilities, voice out their struggles amongst others, challenge their current beliefs or dare to be challenged, and take action, no matter how small. I think this event will give me and anyone who attends those opportunities. I am going because I care enough to seek answers, and I think this event will help me get closer to them.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/field-reports-from-the-national-revolution-tour-en.html

Field Reports From The National Revolution Tour

| revcom.us

 

Speech by Luan from the National Revolution Tour at the December 14 #OutNow! Protest in NYC

Donate to and Sustain the National Get Ready for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Luan from National Revolution Tour at Union Square, New York City, October 26 #OUTNOW rally.

Thousands in Chicago "Greet" Fascist Trump In Manner He Merits

From a member of the National Revolution Tour

October 29, 2019

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On the Righteous Rebellion Against Police Murder in Memphis:
How Long Will We Bury Our Own?
Until We Bury This System!

From the National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour and the Revolution Club

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June 4—Nationwide: Stop the War on Women! Abortion on Demand Without Apology! We Need—and Demand—A Better World and the Full Emancipation of Women!
A Call From the Revolution Tour

The crowd at Les Mis at Pantages in Los Angeles applauded wildly as @revclub_la @SunsaraTaylor and the National Revolution Tour stood up for abortion rights and called people to the streets June 4.

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National Revolution Tour at the Los Angeles rally by presidential candidate Julian Castro, exposes him as #BEB


Dispatch from the National Revolution Tour:

Out Among the People, "Disturbing The Air"

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There's Only 2 Choices.
Which One Will You Choose?

This speech was delivered by Sunsara Taylor and Tala Deloria

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“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

More about the Tour »

Read the Call to the Tour »

Tala Deloria and Lenny Wolff talk about The National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour, and about the May 20 speaking event at UCLA on The Michael Slate Show


Andy Zee and Michelle Xai "Grand Experiment... As Serious As Your Life"

On The Michael Slate Show

LISTEN HERE


Noche Diaz Presenting the Lifetime Fire Extinguisher Award to Al Sharpton at the Sacramento, CA State Capitol.

Revolution Club at the State Capitol in Sacramento

 

Read flier here

Two members of the National Tour took this basic flyer to a MEChA conference at UCLA attended by hundreds of students from around the country. The flyer sparked controversy, including from some of the conference leadership, and this in turn sparked interest and real engagement.

The next day, a larger contingent of Revolution Club members marched with their banner in a MEChA march that, among other things, denounced U.S. imperialism in reference both to Latin America and oppressed communities within the U.S. And here too, a couple of dozen people wanted to get more deeply into the challenges posed by the revcoms.

Learning from this, we can see that a basic flyer like this can be a way to clearly set terms and on that basis generate engagement.

 

A Speech by Bob Avakian

This speech is in two parts.

Watch trailer, clips, Q&A sessions here »     Find out more, get organized »     Listen to audio clips from Q&A sessions »     Text of speech »
 

Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution

A speech by Bob Avakian
In two parts:

 

Watch it, spread it, fund it

Check out clips and audio of the film and Q&As

Find out more about this speech—and get organized to spread it »

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/struggle-over-the-reality-of-society-and-the-need-for-revolution-en.html

“...you're talking about the whole world...”

Struggle Over the REALITY of Society, and the Need for Revolution

| revcom.us

 

Editor's Note: Following is a lightly edited excerpt of a “field” report from the National Tour

We had an important struggle at a community college with someone we met last week. This was someone who first came to a debate about whether the American Dream is humanity's nightmare and wanted to defend the “American Dream.” But through that discussion, he changed some of his thinking, in part hearing people debate about what the U.S. has done to the world and then reading a couple BA quotes about this.

He had read the flyers we gave him last week and this time was trying to make an argument on how we actually could reform this system. He was arguing in particular about how to stop police brutality, basically how to make these horrors a little less horrific and he was making an argument about using the system against them.

In getting into this, I stepped back to the point that we're not just talking about the people in America or just the oppression of Black people, but actually all of humanity. I started from BAsics 3:2: “There is nothing more unrealistic than the idea of reforming this system into something that would come anywhere near being in the interests of the great majority of people and ultimately of humanity as a whole.” I walked through what we mean when we say system, talking about the mode of production and went a little deeper into the global system of capitalism/imperialism. Everything that is produced and sold for profit is basically on the backs of millions of people all over the world. I used the example of the basic needs of human beings to live being water, food, shelter, clothes, and culture. How can we actually get all those things without any exploitation of any kind? In order to get these basic needs, people have to sell their ability to work to get paid this commodity money that we use to go trade this for food, clothes, rent etc. I walked through briefly why fundamentally we cannot just reform this system in the interest of the vast majority of humanity.

His first response was “you're talking about the whole world.” He said from the first discussion he had he was thinking about what we were talking about just in terms of America. This gave him a different understanding of what we're actually talking about.

One of his questions was what would replace the old system. We talked about the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America. He had a lot of questions but was also very excited to hear that there was such a Constitution. One of his questions was will there be a government under that new society and how do we make sure that the leadership of the new society will not go in a different direction. I didn't go after every single question but I did point to the fact that these questions were very important and the need for him to actually do the work, to dig into the Constitution, to dig into Bob Avakian, in the fight to actually keep that leadership on the right road, and the argument that BA makes about everyone's responsibility in that.

Through the whole discussion, we were also putting the problems to him. We talked about the contradictions bound up with organizing thousands of people into the Revolution and what that all takes, including going up against the frameworks that are keeping people locked into the system, needing to break through on this and organize thousands by the end of this year.

We did put to him the need for him to join the Revolution Club and the impact we are fighting to have during this June 8th and 9th weekend. He was very excited and very seriously thinking about this after the discussion.

One interesting thing he said at the end of our discussion was that he wanted to join with the Revolution and accepted the challenge of being one of the first to step into this Revolution. He said he didn't want it to be next year or in the future where there are thousands of people that are with this Revolution and him just kind of standing off to the side, looking at those thousands and not being one of the first. He enthusiastically wanted that responsibility of being one of the first and going to work on bringing forward those thousands.

 

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

Read the Call to the Tour »

3 Things that have to happen in order for there to be real and lasting change for the better:

1) People have to fully confront the actual history of this country and its role in the world up to today, and the terrible consequences of this.

2) People have to dig seriously and scientifically into how this system of capitalism-imperialism actually works, and what this actually causes in the world.

3) People have to look deeply into the solution to all this.

Bob Avakian
May 1st, 2016

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/a-mass-debate-at-a-community-college-en.html

"Either prove us wrong, or join the Revolution Club."
A Mass Debate at a Community College

| revcom.us

 

Editor's Note: Following is a lightly edited excerpt of a "field" report from the National Tour

We held a mass debate at a community college. In addition to putting our table and displays in the middle of campus, two of us went around the campus making short announcements to students gathering at tables, in the cafeteria, perched on busy walkways during class changes, and posted in a bathroom.

The content of the provocation to debate involved posing the 5 STOPS and asking people to tell us how any of this is going to be reformed under this system, reading BAsics 3:2: “There is nothing more unrealistic than the idea of reforming this system into something that would come anywhere near being in the interests of the great majority of people and ultimately of humanity as a whole.” We ended with: “Either prove us wrong, or join the Revolution Club.” A couple times, we got a big applause but I feel we could have done more to challenge those applauding to step into the revolution.

We had one person at the table, where some people were stopping to look at the 5 STOPS displays. We were stepping up to people with the debate at 1pm and also that we are building the Revolution Club, which drew interest in the Club. A recurring question was people asking “Is this a club at school?” 

There was contestation around the POA on “jokes” which one woman was trying to frame as a question of censorship. She also wanted to pick a fight on POA #3, that we should fight for a world without borders. This was good, as we were able to get going a scene where people were also speaking to each other. This sharpened up with more intense debate whether America is a force for good, and why people have to leave their homelands in the first place to come to the U.S. to survive. We got into the actual role and history of what the U.S. has done to people all over the world. It got more heated and this drew more people’s interest and excitement.

One woman who played a really good role in the exchange started off from a place of disagreement, saying that we need a revolution of the mind and that people need to change themselves in order to care about others. By seeing the more backwards positions being argued, she transformed through this debate, and at the end said that through the course of the arguments she had to say things and take positions on things she didn’t even know she had (on immigration and borders, on jokes, on the U.S. military and role of the U.S. around the world).

Off of this, we signed up several people who are interested in joining the Revolution Club and took copies of the Points of Attention to distribute.  When we went back to the campus on Thursday, we made a point of setting up in the same place and introducing people we’ve been talking with to each other, to develop more of a sense of people collectively stepping into the revolution and joining the Revolution Club.

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

Read the Call to the Tour »

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/june-weekend-of-revolution-en.html

The “Get Organized for an Actual Revolution National Tour” & the Revolution Club, LA Present:

A Weekend of Revolution June 8 & 9, 2019

You Think You’re Woke ...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare,
This System CANNOT Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!
A Better World IS Possible!

| revcom.us

 

Be A Part of Putting Revolution On The Map In LA – Inspiring People Nationwide.

Save the dates now. Volunteer to help plan a weekend to make the biggest difference.

If you hate what this system does to people here and around the world, join with others who feel like you do – defiant, and who are looking for a whole different way the world could be.

Over the next year the National Revolution Tour is setting out to organize thousands into the revolution – this will give hope to millions. You are needed to make June 8 and 9 a strong opening salvo.

Saturday, June 8: Join Revolution Club Marches & Rallies to Declare:

ENOUGH! / ¡BASTA YA!
We Need an Actual Revolution
A Better World Is Possible

In South Central, East LA and West LA, we will march to announce that there is a new force gathering and getting organized for the time when we could really make a revolution – to emancipate humanity, to save the planet, to create a future worth living for.

Saturday Evening, June 8:

A Night of Revolutionary Celebration
Living and Fighting for a Whole New World!

An evening with a short special film of Bob Avakian, the leader of the revolution, revolutionary culture, a night of celebration and support for a radically new and better world.

Sunday, June 9: Workshops

Getting Organized For Revolution
11:00 AM – 3 PM

What's the revolution all about? How can we really make a revolution? Who is the leader of this Revolution, Bob Avakian and what is the New Communism? How do you join the Revolution Club?

How do you build it in an area or campus where it doesn't yet exist? How do you get started?

 

323.424.6687 • revclub_la@yahoo.com • Social Media: @revclub_la

www.revcom.us • @tuneintorevcom

 

Download and Spread Flyer HERE (PDF)

“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Read about the Tour stepping up and stepping out »

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/iran-america-plays-imperialist-roulette-in-gulf-en.html

Iran: America Plays Imperialist Roulette in the Gulf
Putting Millions of Lives at Risk

| revcom.us

 

Editor's Note: As we go to press, it has come to our attention that Trump has escalated his threats, tweeting Sunday that “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!" This represents a significant escalation and potentially implied nuclear threat which should be taken seriously.

Last week we reported1 that the U.S. ratcheted up its military and economic threats against Iran, including tightening crippling economic sanctions and dispatching an aircraft carrier strike group and four nuclear-capable B-52 bombers to the Persian Gulf. All this raised the specter of U.S. war against Iran.

Since then, there has been a flurry of conflicting U.S. moves and reports. On one hand, according to the New York Times,2 the Pentagon has prepared war plans to send 120,000 troops to the region if needed. The U.S. has provocatively blamed Iran (without hard evidence) for damaging four oil tankers in the Persian Gulf and circulated reports that Iran was loading missiles on boats and planning attacks on U.S. forces in Iraq.

Then, later in the week, on Friday, May 17, the New York Times carried a major report that Trump, after previously threatening that Iran would “suffer greatly” if it or its allies attacked U.S. “interests,” had met with his generals and told them he didn’t want war with Iran, and that he wanted to talk with Iran. This was reportedly in sharp contrast to the reported warlike stances of National Security Adviser John Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.

These contradictory statements and moves show there are deep divisions among the U.S. rulers—including within the Trump/Pence regime—over how best to maintain their global empire, and dominance in the Middle East, in the face of a host of vexing challenges. In particular, there are grave concerns regarding the consequences of a military attack on Iran, and its potential escalation into a regional war. The Persian Gulf is global capitalism’s oil artery, accounting for a third of world oil shipments.3

Some Basic Points of Orientation

1. These divisions among America’s rulers are like bitter arguments between bloodthirsty vampires over how best to sink their fangs into their intended victims. All factions of the U.S. ruling class understand that dominating the Middle East and the Persian Gulf has been a key pillar of America’s global power and capitalist-imperialist empire, and see Iran’s Islamic Republic as an obstacle, to varying degrees, to U.S. control of the region. But there are sharp divisions over how to deal with Iran and maintain U.S. regional hegemony, while dealing with other global challenges like Russia and China. Spearheaded by Bolton and Pompeo, the Trump/Pence regime has been pursuing a strategy aimed at “regime change,” directly overthrowing the Islamic Republic or forcing its removal through massive economic pressure and political upheaval, if it does not fully capitulate to U.S. demands.4

2. Heightened conditions of confrontation remain. Last week we wrote that U.S. moves in the Persian Gulf were an escalation of its “regime change” strategy and an acceleration of the trajectory toward a U.S. confrontation with Iran.

This complex of moves has resulted in a dangerous situation with explosive “trip wires” where accidents and miscalculations can lead to significant escalation towards all-out war.

The U.S. is the world’s most powerful and dangerous imperialist superpower, armed to the teeth with thousands of nukes. It’s threatening Iran—a much less-powerful Third World country with no nukes that is ruled by a reactionary Islamic theocracy.5 The Trump/Pence regime’s extremely threatening, bellicose moves against Iran, including designating parts of Iran’s government as “terrorists” and waging economic warfare in the form of sanctions aimed at cutting its oil lifeline, all remain in effect and are threatening the lives of millions of Iranians. Trump hasn’t backed off any of that!

These U.S. actions, threats, and charges against Iran have created a situation that could spark a tit-for-tat escalation that could spiral out of control.

The Wall Street Journal 6 reported that because of U.S. moves, Iran’s leaders “believed an attack was coming and prepared possible counterstrikes,” which the U.S. in turn responded to with further threats and escalations.

Now there are reports that the U.S. and Iran may be taking steps to reduce tensions. However, a certain momentum toward confrontation has already been unleashed, and there remains a real danger that miscalculations or accidents could spark a military clash. For example, how will the U.S. react if Iran carries through on its promise—prompted by U.S. aggression—to resume a higher level of uranium enrichment if it doesn’t get economic relief from sanctions?

The situation is further muddied—and made more dangerous—by Trump’s response to reports of divisions within his regime. He tweeted: “Iran can have no idea what is actually going on”—as if all the uncertainty and heightened danger of miscalculation was a good thing! This amounts to literally playing roulette with the lives of millions—and bragging about it!

The U.S. Rulers Have NO Right to Threaten, Bully, or Attack Anyone, Anywhere

The U.S. imperialists have been intervening, threatening, sanctioning, and fomenting attacks on Iran since 1953 when a CIA coup overthrew an Iranian nationalist and installed a hated U.S. puppet, the Shah.7 They’ve done even worse to neighboring Iraq, invading, waging war, and imposing crippling sanctions that have led to the deaths of at least four million Iraqis since the 1960s.

And right now, the U.S. is arming, fueling, and facilitating Saudi Arabia’s genocidal war on the people—including children!—of Yemen, which has already taken 233,000 lives in the last four years. According to UNICEF:

Each day, another eight children will be killed, injured or recruited to the fighting. Every 10 minutes, another child will die from a preventable cause. Like a lack of food, with 360,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition. In fact, half the children under five years old in Yemen—2.5 million—are stunted. And stunting is irreversible.... Yemen is a test of our humanity. And right now, we are badly failing this test.

Given the blood-soaked track record of enforcing imperialist domination no matter the cost in human life, no one should accept America’s “right” to threaten and strangle a country and gamble with the lives of millions and millions... even if it doesn’t come to all-out war—any more than one should accept the Mafia’s right to murder and extort! Instead, people should be actively speaking out against, protesting, and resisting every manifestation of U.S. aggression against Iran—and anywhere else around the world.

And more fundamentally, why should anyone tolerate a system where wars and crimes against humanity are built into its very functioning and occur over and over and over?

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!


1. See “Who Is Actually Threatening Who in the Iran-U.S. Conflict? Six Basic Realities the U.S. Media Downplays, Obscures, or Lies About” and “ U.S. vs. Iran: How the New York Times Twists Reality,” both at revcom.us, May 13, 2019. [back]

2. “White House Reviews Military Plans Against Iran, in Echoes of Iraq War,” New York Times, May 13, 2019. [back]

3. For example, on May 18, the New York Times carried an extensive analysis: “Saudi Oil Infrastructure at Risk as Small Attacks Raise Potential for Big Disruption,” detailing the vulnerability of Saudi Arabia’s oil production system—the world’s main oil spigot—in the event of war. [back]

4. See “Pompeo Issues Ultimatum to Iran: Only America Can Have Troops in Syria, Bully Iraq, Bomb Yemen, Support Reactionary Thugs, Wield Nukes, and Dominate the Middle East!” revcom.us, May 28, 2018. [back]

5. For background on the history of U.S. intervention in Iran, the reactionary nature of the Islamic Republic of Iran and the dynamics of the clash between these “two outmoded” forces, see Bob Avakian’s 2006 talk, Bringing Forward Another Way. [back]

6. Intelligence Suggests U.S., Iran Misread Each Other, Stoking Tensions,” Wall Street Journal, May 16, 2019. [back]

7.  See “American Crime Case #98: 1953 CIA Coup in Iran: Torture and Repression—Made in the U.S.A.,” revcom.us, May 16, 2016. [back]

 


The USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier in the Suez Canal, May 9, 2019. Photo: AP

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/032/avakian-reform-or-revolution.htm

Reform or Revolution

Questions of Orientation, Questions of Morality

by Bob Avakian, Chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party, USA

January 29, 2006 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us

 

Editors Note: The following is an excerpt from a talk given by Bob Avakian, Chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party, to a group of Party members and supporters in 2005. It was edited for publication when originally posted.

This essay appears in the book BAsics, from the talks and writing of Bob Avakian.

 

Now, when you come up against the great gulf that often, and even generally, exists between the conditions and the suffering of the masses of people, on the one hand, and what you are able to do about that at any given point—when you run up against that repeatedly, everyone feels a definite pull which expresses itself in moral terms: how can you stand by and not do something about what's happening to the masses of people? As I have said a number of times, I have enormous respect for people who do things like volunteer for Doctors Without Borders. But the fact is that while they're doing what they're doing, and even with the good they do, this is being engulfed and overwhelmed by a tsunami of suffering (metaphorically speaking and sometimes literally) that's brought forth by larger objective forces.

When I was younger, I considered being a doctor or a lawyer, not to make money and get on the golf course, but because I knew there were many people who needed good medical care and people who were victimized by the so-called legal system who could use an advocate who really would be an advocate and a fighter for them. But at a certain point I came to understand that, while I would be helping a few people, and even if I threw myself into it, much greater numbers of people would find themselves in the position of needing these services—far beyond what I, and others, could do to help them—and it would just be perpetuated forever, and the conditions would get worse. And once you understand this, you can't look yourself in the mirror and do anything less than what you understand, if you're going to be consistent and follow through on your own principles.

So, yes, there's a moral dimension here. How can you sit by and watch people die of diseases that are preventable, not just in the Third World, but right down the street from you? How can you "sit by"? How can you not immediately try to do something about that? But moralities are a reflection of class outlooks, ultimately. They are a reflection of your understanding of reality, which takes a class expression in class society, in an ultimate and fundamental sense. And there is a morality that corresponds not to reformism and seeking merely to mitigate the conditions and the suffering of masses of people—not merely to addressing some, and only some, of the symptoms of that suffering—but to uprooting and abolishing the causes of that suffering. This morality corresponds to a revolutionary understanding, that we cannot eliminate the suffering of the masses, and in fact it's only going to get worse, as long as this capitalist-imperialist system remains.

This doesn't mean that it is unimportant to address particular abuses, or that mass resistance to particular forms of oppression is not important. Far from it. The basic point that Marx emphasized is profoundly true: If the masses don't fight back and resist their oppression, even short of revolution, they will be crushed and reduced to a broken mass and will be incapable of rising up for any higher thing. But, as a fundamental point of orientation, we have to grasp firmly the truth that, despite the best and most heroic and self-sacrificing efforts, it is not possible, within the framework of this system, even to really alleviate, let alone eliminate, the suffering and the causes of the suffering of the masses of people. And our morality has to flow from that.

Let me give you an analogy. Let's say you went back several centuries, somewhat like Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court. Let's say in this case you went back to the time of the plagues in Europe that wiped out huge swaths of the population. And the most people knew to do then was to try to quarantine and stay away from people infected with the plague. Then, looking at all these people dying of the plague, if you were a good-hearted person perhaps you would take wet towels and put them on the foreheads of the people who were dying, or take some other steps to try to minimize their suffering to some degree. And maybe you would do what you could to keep the disease from spreading. But let's say that, as a person from the present time, you know that the plague could actually be cured, fairly easily, with antibiotics, if they were administered in time. And, further extending and elaborating the analogy, let's imagine that somehow there were antibiotics back in that time—of course, in reality antibiotics did not exist and the scientific understanding had not been developed to produce antibiotics until more recent times, but let's say that somehow these antibiotics also existed back then: let's put into our scenario some other people who had also gone back in time from the present age and had taken with them a big stash of antibiotics, which could prevent the millions of deaths that were caused by the plague several centuries ago. But these other time-travelers were monopolizing the ownership of these antibiotics and had organized and paid an armed force of thugs to guard this stash of antibiotics, and were refusing to distribute any of these antibiotics unless they could profit from it, by charging a price that most of the people could not afford.

Now, knowing this, which way would people be better served: by continuing to put towels on the foreheads of the fevered people, or by organizing people to storm the compound where the antibiotics were being hoarded, seize the antibiotics and distribute them among the people?

This is, by analogy, the essential difference between reform and revolution. And our morality flows from our understanding of this. Yes, it's very hard to see masses of people suffer and not be able to put a stop to this suffering, right at the time; and, yes, we should organize the masses to fight back against their oppression and the ways in which this system causes them to suffer; but if we really understand where "the antibiotics" are and who's hoarding and monopolizing them and turning them into machinery for profit, into capital, and what it is that's preventing the masses of people from getting to those antibiotics, then our responsibility is to lead the masses to rise up and seize those things and distribute them among themselves.

Now, let me emphasize again: I can and do admire the morality of people who want to alleviate suffering (and who may not see beyond that). We should in no way denigrate or put down these people—people who do things like put water in the desert for immigrants crossing from Mexico—we should admire them and we should unite with them. But that cannot provide the fundamental solution to that particular problem, of the suffering of these immigrants and what drives them to leave their homelands in the first place, nor can it eliminate all the other ways in which masses of people, throughout the world, are oppressed and caused to suffer. Or, again, while I admire the people who volunteer with things like Doctors Without Borders, if they were to say, "this is the most anybody can do, there's nothing more you can do," we would have to engage in principled but very sharp struggle with them, even while uniting with them and admiring their spirit, because it is objectively not true that this is all that can, or should, be done—and it is harmful to the masses of people to say that this is all that can be done.

In fundamental and strategic terms, it is necessary to choose where the weight and the essence of your efforts is going to go: into fighting the effects and the symptoms, or getting to the cause and uprooting and getting rid of that cause? And that's why you become a revolutionary—when you realize that you have to seek the full solution to this, or else the suffering is going to continue, and get worse. That's one of the main things that impels people toward revolution, even before they understand, scientifically, all the complexity of what revolution means and what it requires. And, as you become a communist and you increasingly look at the whole world, and not just the part of the world that you are immediately situated in, you see that the whole world has to change, that all oppression and exploitation has to be uprooted, everywhere, so that it can no longer exist anywhere.

So we have to be on a mission to liberate those antibiotics, and not get diverted into thinking that the most and the highest good we can do is trying to lessen the misery, to mitigate the symptoms, rather than getting to the cause and bringing about a real and lasting cure. The question of reform vs. revolution is not some petty notion of "our thing" vs. somebody's else's "thing"—it is a matter of what is really required to eliminate the horrendous suffering to which the great majority of humanity is subjected, day after day, and what kind of world is possible.

Nor are we revolutionaries because it's a "fashionable" thing to do—right now, in fact, it's not very fashionable at all. Back in the '60s, among certain sections of the people, Black people and others, being a revolutionary was a "legitimate avocation": What do you do? I'm a doctor. What do you do? I'm a basketball player. What do you do? I'm a revolutionary. Legitimate avocation. I was talking to another veteran comrade about this, and they pointed out that, in a certain sense, it was easier in those days to be a revolutionary because you had a lot of "social approbation"— there was a lot of approval coming from significant sections of society for being a revolutionary. Right now you don't get that much "social approbation" for being a revolutionary, and in particular a revolutionary communist. [laughter] "What the fuck, you crazy?!" [laughter] That's a lot of what you get, as you know. Or you get more theoretically developed arguments about why it's hopeless or a bad idea, or a disaster, or a nightmare. Well, we aren't doing this because we're seeking social approbation. It's good in one sense if you have that—in the sense that it reflects favorable elements in society, in terms of how people are viewing the question of radical change—but we're not doing what we're doing in order to get "social approbation," and we're not relying on such "social approbation" for what we're doing. If there isn't "social approbation," we have to create it—not so people will "approve" of what we're doing, in some more narrow or personal sense, but because we need to transform people's understanding of reality and therefore the way they act in terms of transforming reality.

So this is a fundamental question of orientation, but that orientation is not just: revolution, it's more righteous. "Reform, that sounds kind of paltry; revolutionary, that's more righteous." [laughter] No, that's not the heart of the matter. It's very righteous to be in Doctors Without Borders. But the essential thing is that revolution corresponds to reality, it corresponds to what's needed to resolve the contradictions that have been spoken to repeatedly in this talk—the fundamental contradiction of capitalism and other contradictions bound up with that, and all the effects of this in the world—to resolve these contradictions in the interests of the masses of people. That's why we're revolutionaries—and a certain kind of revolutionaries—communist revolutionaries. Because that's the only kind of revolution that can do what needs to be done, what cries out to be done. So what we do has to proceed from that, in terms of our fundamental orientation.

 

 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/550/skybreak-need-for-a-big-societal-debate-reform-or-revolution-en.html

Excerpt from SCIENCE AND REVOLUTION, On the Importance of Science and the Application of Science to Society, the New Synthesis of Communism and the Leadership of Bob Avakian, An Interview with Ardea Skybreak

A Need for a Big Societal Debate: Reform, or Revolution?

July 2, 2018 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us

 

In the early part of 2015, over a number of days, Revolution conducted a wide-ranging interview with Ardea Skybreak. A scientist with professional training in ecology and evolutionary biology, and an advocate of the new synthesis of communism brought forward by Bob Avakian, Skybreak is the author of, among other works, The Science of Evolution and the Myth of Creationism: Knowing What's Real and Why It Matters, and Of Primeval Steps and Future Leaps: An Essay on the Emergence of Human Beings, the Source of Women's Oppression, and the Road to Emancipation. This interview was first published online at www.revcom.us.

Ardea Skybreak Science and Revolution excerpts A New Theoretical Framework for a New Stage of Communist Revolution What Is New in the New Synthesis? The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic--A Visionary and Concrete Application of the New Synthesis Serious Engagement with the New Synthesis--The Difference It Could Make An Explorer, a Critical Thinker, a Follower of BA Some Thank Yous That Need To Be Said Aloud Order the book here Download the full interview in PDF format here

AS continues: There’s a big mass societal debate that needs to go on among all strata on the question of reform or revolution: Which is the way forward? Reform means you tinker with the system, you try to fix it here or there. An example of reform, for instance, is that you would try to deal with police brutality and murder by things like having civilian review boards, and putting body cameras on policemen, and in other ways trying to fix things within the existing relations in society, within the existing system. And people do try these things. Civilian review boards have been around since at least the 1960s, you know. People keep falling into these traps of these reformist notions that, somehow, if you could just fix and tweak this a little bit here and there, you could get rid of these outrages and abuses. And what that comes from is a lack of profound scientific understanding of why these kinds of outrages are not just accidental or occasional, and why they’re deeply rooted in the fabric of this system, in its very foundation, which has everything to do with the white supremacist origins of this particular society in the United States, how this country was founded on slavery, and everything that came from there that’s never been surpassed. It’s not just a question of backward racist ideas on the part of some white people. That is in the mix. But much more deeply, there is an institutional fabric in how this capitalist-imperialist system is structured and how it works, in such a way that it cannot resolve these deep, deep divisions and problems, that requires that certain sections of society be kept down and oppressed, in particular, Black people in this country, and other people of color as well.

That’s a whole bigger discussion, there’s a whole deep analysis of why that’s true. This has been deeply gotten into by Bob Avakian and the RCP, and people should check that out. I’m not going to try to get into it more here. But in the context of what we’re talking about right now, I’m saying that, if people are just looking for some ways of making a few token reforms, a few “tweaks” to the system, or looking for ways to maybe improve a few things in just one neighborhood or local area...it’s not that all those kinds of projects and plans are really bad in themselves, but it’s that they won’t lead to the fundamental change that’s needed. For instance, look at the environmental movement. What is happening with the environment is a global emergency that requires big-scale measures of restructuring the way the economy, and society overall, operates, to prevent the constant exploitation and degradation of the environments of the planet that’s going to end up leading people to extinction, you know. I firmly believe that humanity is either going to find the ways to transform its forms of social organization in the direction of viable socialism and eventually moving towards planet-wide communism, or humanity’s going to go extinct because of what it’s doing to this planet. I can make scientific arguments about why I think that’s really true. And time is getting short. So that’s just one example: Why the environmental problem has to be tackled on a really big scale, by making really fundamental, radical change in the whole way society is organized, structured and run. Just a little more enlightenment and just a few tweaks and minor reforms of the existing system are simply not going to cut it.

But a lot of progressive-minded middle strata people...often they’ll get into things like, “it might be better not to use plastic bags at the grocery stores,” or “let’s have green light bulbs,” “let’s recycle more,” or “let’s see if we can work on hybrid and electric cars to reduce pollution, and let’s have more solar panels, for clean energy.” There’s actually a lot that can be learned from a lot of these initiatives, and many of those kinds of changes are things that you would actually want to implement in a new society. And I’m not saying that it’s bad to be encouraging some of those small steps even today. But what I would like people to recognize more honestly is how puny, limited and tokenistic these changes are, especially relative to the actual scope and scale of the environmental crisis. It’s not even scratching the surface of the problem. What is needed is much more profound, radical change. And I think a lot of the middle strata people are always looking for these “little ways of tinkering,” trying to reform just a few things, in a way that seems more comfortable and manageable, rather than confronting the need for a total dismantling of the system and institutions that are necessarily driven, by their own underlying laws of functioning, to despoil and degrade the environment. The system of capitalism-imperialism cannot stop doing this, it is structurally unable to stop doing this–that’s what you have to confront. People sincerely concerned about the global environment really should seriously study Bob Avakian’s analyses, which make the case, and provide evidence, for why problems such as these are so deeply rooted in the very functional core of this capitalist system that they can’t be dealt with just through a series of minor adjustments. What is required is a profound and radical overhaul of the whole way society is set up at its foundations, of the whole way it functions in a comprehensive sense. But to effect this radical restructuring it is necessary to have an actual revolution– so that, more than anything else, is what people genuinely concerned about the global environmental emergency should be working towards.

These arguments are backed up by a lot of sound and concrete scientific evidence. Nevertheless, a lot of these middle strata people are uncomfortable with the prospect of such radical change. In some cases, it’s more that they just haven’t yet encountered these analyses, they’re unfamiliar with them, nobody’s ever talked to them about this, they haven’t yet explored the revcom.us website and Revolution newspaper or the works of Bob Avakian. But I’m sure many of them–especially among the younger people who are not so invested in reformist methods and approaches–will find their way to these resources, and will start seriously digging into all this themselves, and I think many will end up being willing to confront “the logic of the logic.” In other words, when they seriously dig into the analyses, they will increasingly recognize that, “Yes, this does makes sense, this is what the evidence points to.” And even though revolution is not an easy road, and there will necessarily be sacrifices, it would all be worth it to have a genuine possibility of making a much better world, of constructing much better societies, on a new basis and foundation that could very quickly address the major problems of capitalist society, and which would greatly benefit the vast majority of people. The irony is that all those middle class people who constantly complain about the way things are today but who shy away from radical change and revolution...many of them, most of them in fact, would, I am quite sure, end up very much benefitting from, and appreciating, life in a new socialist society, especially a socialist society of the type envisioned by Bob Avakian’s new synthesis. Once again, on the foundation of that solid core, but with lots of elasticity based on the solid core, there would be air to breathe for these people in such a society. They would not be pushed to the side or crushed or stifled, as long as they were not trying to actually destroy the new society, and they would find that they could themselves help institute a lot of the progressive social changes that they get so frustrated at not being able to implement under conditions of the current system. So they should look forward to it, and help work towards it.

But again, right now, especially among the middle class, a lot of these people are more inclined to stick with what they’re more familiar with–the known rather than the unknown. They haven’t dug into any of this, really. They haven’t checked it out. They haven’t discussed and debated it. Many seem more content with puttering around with little reformist schemes, making little minor criticisms, and just basically complaining about the way things are, but without really doing anything that’s substantial to get beyond this. And the crime is that, meanwhile, while they do that, while they cultivate and promote their illusions, and when they try to tear down a revolutionary leader like Bob Avakian and try to prevent him from getting his message out broadly to the people–while they’re doing all that, the world continues as it is, with the unrelenting grinding down of the masses of people here and around the world. The blood and the bones–this is real, it is ongoing, and it will continue to go on, on a daily basis, as long as this system is allowed to persist.

 

 

 

 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/349/watching-Fruitvale-Station-with-Bob-Avakian-en.html

Watching Fruitvale Station With Bob Avakian

August 22, 2014 | Revolution Newspaper | revcom.us

 

April 22, 2019. This article was originally published in 2014. We believe that it is particularly timely now to either return to this or, for those who have not read it before, to read it for the first time.

For those who don’t know, Fruitvale Station is a very powerful, moving, and excruciating film that depicts the last day in the life of Oscar Grant.  Oscar was a 22-year-old, unarmed Black man murdered by Bay Area Rapid Transit police on New Year’s Day, 2009.  He was returning home from celebrating on New Year’s Eve, when police stopped Oscar and the friends he was with, harassed and brutalized them, straddled Oscar as he lay face down on a subway platform, and fatally shot him in the back. 

Not too long ago, I watched Fruitvale Station with Bob Avakian (BA), chairman of the Revolutionary Communist Party.  Towards the very end of the film, agonizing, heartbreaking and infuriating scenes are shown: The cop shooting Oscar in the back; Oscar’s girlfriend frantically rushing to the scene, trying to find out what happened; Oscar’s loved ones gathering together and waiting desperately to find out if he would make it, only to find out he was gone forever.

As these scenes unfolded, I looked over at BA.  He was sobbing.  Not just misty-eyed. Sobbing.  And he continued to cry tears of heartbreak and rage for several minutes, as the closing credits rolled.

This made a very big impression on me.  BA did not know Oscar Grant personally. But he felt the sting of his murder in an extremely raw and visceral way. And I think his reaction speaks volumes about who Bob Avakian is, what he represents, and what he is all about. 

BA has literally been fighting against this system for 50 years.  He has been a revolutionary communist for about 45 years.  He has been shouldering the responsibility of leading the Revolutionary Communist Party for almost 40 years. And over the course of the last several decades, he has forged the theory and deepened the science for the revolution humanity needs to get free, while also providing practical leadership to the party and movement working for that revolution.  And all of this has involved not only tremendous work, but also tremendous risk and sacrifice on BA’s part as anyone with a sense of U.S. history, and/or BA’s personal history—specifically, what this reveals about the way the U.S. government viciously goes after revolutionary leaders—should well understand. And over all these decades, and through everything described above, BA has never lost an ounce of his love and feeling for the masses of people, his sense of outrage and hatred for all the ways in which the masses suffer needlessly, and his fire for revolution to emancipate the masses all over the world.  Not one bone in his body has become numb.  

There is a great deal more that could be said about the experience of watching Fruitvale Station with BA. But I want to highlight two points.

First, I think that in BA’s reaction to this movie, there is a lot for revolutionary communists, and anyone with concern for humanity and hatred for oppression and injustice, to reflect on and learn from.  Even with all the work BA has done and continues to do in the realm of theory, in order to forge a deeper understanding of why police murders like the execution of Oscar Grant and countless other outrages keep happening, the larger picture they are connected to, and how these outrages can be ended through revolution; even though BA has been at this for decades; and even with all of the horrors that pile up every single second that this system remains in place, there is absolutely no sense on BA’s part of world-weary detachment or defeatism when something like the murder of Oscar Grant goes down.  His reaction is decidedly not:  “Oh, well of course, this happens all the time, what do you expect?”   Rather, he cries tears of rage and anguish, both because he feels acutely the pain of Oscar’s life being stolen and because he knows that outrages like this are completely unnecessary and that humanity does not have to live this way.

This brings me to the second point I want to make here—and it is one I want to give even greater emphasis to, even while the first point above is very important and very related. The point I want to close this letter with is: We had better fully recognize and appreciate what we have in BA, and act accordingly.

I’ll say it again: We had better fully recognize and appreciate what we have in BA, and act accordingly.

And when I say “we had better,” that “we” is addressed to many different people and audiences.  Yes, I am most definitely speaking to revolutionaries and communists and to all those who are already deeply familiar with and supportive of BA.  But in saying “we,” I am also speaking to those who are just now—or just recently—learning about and getting introduced to this revolutionary leader—including, to quote BA, “Those this system has cast off, those it has treated as less than human” who “can be the backbone and driving force of a fight not only to end their own oppression, but to finally end all oppression, and emancipate all of humanity.”   

To all the masses of people, here and around the world, who suffer brutal oppression minute after minute, day after day... and to all those who may not directly suffer this oppression but ache for a world where this oppression is no more, I want to say this:  If you do not know about Bob Avakian, or just recently learned about him, that is not your fault.  But you, and millions of other people, need to understand how incredibly rare and precious it is for the people of the planet that we have this revolutionary leader and act in accordance with that reality.

BA is not only the leader of the revolution, he is also a best friend to the masses of people.  He is a leader who has done decades of work in the realm of theory to bring forward the scientific method, strategy and vision needed to make revolution and bring into being a radically new world where all the horrors that humanity suffers unnecessarily would be no more. He is continuing to develop the advanced scientific method that he has forged, and apply that method to all of the big questions and obstacles confronting the revolution. He is able to break all of this down for people, without even slightly watering it down, in a way that everyone can understand, take up, and be inspired by. He has taken on the daily responsibility of leading a party and a movement to make revolution right here in the most powerful imperialist country in the world. He has dedicated his life to the emancipation of humanity. And, through all of this, he maintains a deep, visceral connection to and feeling for the masses of people who most desperately need this revolution.

A leader like this comes along very, very rarely.  And when this does happen, the absolute worst thing we could do is fail to recognize this, fail to act in accordance with this, fail to take this seriously, or take this for granted.  Instead, all of us—whether we have known about BA for decades, are just learning about him and what he represents, or anywhere in between, and whether you agree with BA about everything or not—must fully recognize and embrace what BA means for the people of the world.  We must study, and learn all we can from his incredible body of work on the biggest questions of revolution and human emancipation, as well as the lessons of who he is and what he stands for as a revolutionary leader.  We must realize that it is not just us who need to know about BA, his work and vision, and the leadership he is providing to this party and movement for revolution:  millions of people must know about all of this, and this must impact all of society.    

Furthermore, and very crucially, we must fully confront the reality of what it would mean for the people of the world to lose this leader, and take extremely seriously that there are people and forces—those officially part of the powers-that-be, as well as those willing to do the work of the powers-that-be—who hate what BA represents and would like nothing more than to tear him down, silence him, and take him from the masses of people.  And we must be absolutely determined not to let that happen.

This means taking very seriously the need to do everything we can to protect and defend BA. This means denouncing and not giving a millimeter of space to those who slander and personally attack BA, because these attacks and slanders are part of creating the poisonous atmosphere and conditions that would make it easier for the powers-that-be, or those doing their bidding, to take BA from the people of the world.  Protecting and defending BA, and building a wall around him, also means boldly and sharply challenging those who may not be part of the camp of the enemy, but who are wallowing in, or at least being influenced by, arrogance, cynicism and snark, and who seek to dismiss without seriously engaging what BA has brought forward; this arrogance, snark, cynicism, and dismissal, regardless of the intent of those who fall into it, stands in the way of BA and all that he has brought forward having the reach and societal influence that this urgently needs to have.  And this, too, creates easier conditions for those who would try to silence and isolate BA and take him from the masses.

Few things in life are more tragic than a critical lesson learned too late. And it would truly be a tragedy if BA were taken from the people, and then people said: “Wow, I wish I had realized sooner what we had here.”

But the good news is: It is not too late.  We, and the masses of the planet, have BA right now.  We had better realize, and let everyone know, what that means.

 

 


 

Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/bob-avakian-you-cant-change-the-world-if-you-dont-know-the-basics-30-en.html

You Can’t Change the World If You Don’t Know the BAsics

| revcom.us

 

 

Every week, revcom.us features one quote by Bob Avakian. We encourage Revolution Clubs and other readers, everywhere, to take the time to discuss the quote—the whole quote—and to write us at revolution.reports@yahoo.com with accounts of these discussions, or thoughts provoked in yourself by reading the quote.

 

Basics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian

BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian

"You can't change the world if you don't know the BAsics."

BAsics, from the talks and writings of Bob Avakian is a book of quotations and short essays that speaks powerfully to questions of revolution and human emancipation.

Order the book or download the book in ePub format HERE

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/murdered-by-police-en.html

| revcom.us

 

Murdered By Police:

Willie McCoy, 20
February 9, 2019

Ronell Foster, 32
February 13, 2018

Eric Garner, 43
July 17, 2014

Pamela Turner, 44
May 13, 2019

Sandra Bland, 28
July 13, 2015

In Amerikkka it is perfectly legal for a cop to murder Black men and women for no reason at all—in cold blood. This is a system that works to ensure these cops get away with murder.
A system of white supremacy and police brutality.
As Bob Avakian says:
“If this were the only thing wrong with this system, it would be more than enough reason to sweep it off the Earth!”

 

 

Willie McCoy

Ronell Foster


 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/vallejo-pigs-tase-and-murder-en.html

Vallejo pigs tase and murder

“...it’s time to wake up!”

| revcom.us

 

Willie McCoy’s niece is bringing to light further brutality by the Vallejo, California pigs. Twenty-year-old Deyana Jenkins says she was tased and then taken into custody on April 16, during a traffic stop. The cops admit they did tase Jenkins. Cell phone videos of the incident posted on YouTube don’t show Jenkins getting tased, but do show Jenkins on the pavement outside her car with officers kneeling over her. She can be heard repeatedly screaming, “I did not resist!” Jenkins says she did not have her ID, that she left it in another bag. But she denies the cops’ story that she and the other women in the car made threatening gestures at the cops. They were listening to music on their phones and using social media. Millions of kids do this all the time driving around. But doing this while Black will get you stopped, tased, and arrested.

On May 6, Vallejo police released body cam footage from the February 2018 shooting of a 33-year-old Black man, Ronell Foster. The cop who killed Foster, Ryan McMahon, is one of the cops who killed Willie McCoy. McMahon says he tried to stop Foster because he was riding a bike without a light. Foster continued to ride his bike—apparently a “crime” punishable by death. The bodycam footage shows McMahon chasing Foster and then fatally shooting him in the back and the back of the head. McMahon told the dispatcher, “I have a guy on a bicycle running from me.” About 50 seconds later, Foster is dead.

The pigs continued to say Foster tried to grab the cop’s flashlight in a “threatening manner” and that there was a “violent struggle.” But the video doesn’t corroborate this. Adante Pointer, the lawyer for Foster’s family, told the Guardian, “The video proves that the official police story is nothing but a fraud... Ronell Foster was unarmed, did not present an immediate threat to anyone and was killed for essentially riding his bike.”

The murder of Willie McCoy

On February 9, 2019, Vallejo police took the life of Willie McCoy, a 20-year-old Black man. A firing squad of six cops shot McCoy over 20 times in the head, ear, neck, chest, arms, shoulders, hands, and back. McCoy was seen asleep or passed out in his car in the drive-through lane of a Taco Bell. And someone called the police. Police say when they arrived they found the driver “unresponsive” and allege McCoy had a gun in his lap. Loved ones describe McCoy as a beautiful human, that he loved making music and spending time with his nieces and nephews. He was a rapper in a group called the FBG.

In a video with the audio of the shooting, posted to YouTube a few days after the shooting, police can be heard yelling commands at McCoy and firing at him less than three seconds later. The police video was not made public, but was shown to the McCoy family. David Harrison, McCoy’s cousin who watched the video, said, “They killed him in his sleep. He scratched his arm in his sleep. And they murdered him. There is no justification.” After the McCoy family demanded that the video be made public, it was finally released at the end of March. There is footage from each of the body cams of the six different pigs. It’s horrifying to watch and hear this six times: McCoy appears to move his arm, the pigs yell “show me your hands.” Three seconds later the pigs deliver a horrific barrage of rapid automatic gunfire into the car.

 

To give a sense of the mood, following is a message received at revcom.us from a young activist in Vallejo:

AN ATTACK AGAINST ONE IS AN ATTACK AGAINST ALL
VPD IS CORRUPT

PIG Ryan MCmahon murdered innocent RONELL FOSTER and innocent WILLIE MCCOY. We the citizens of Vallejo are outraged the same officer that hunted Ronell Foster on Feb 18, 2018 for riding a bike later murdered Willie McCoy on Feb 9 of this year for SLEEPING! Along with 5 other animals Collin Eaton, Bryan Glick, Jordon Patzer, Anthony Romero-Cano and Mark Thompson.

Jordan Patzer was sent in by the City of Vallejo to intimidate and further harass the family’s of these lost.

PATHETIC! WE THE CITIZENS OF VALLEJO are outraged how can we feel safe with these animals still out on our streets with a badge that will let them murder and get away with it. Vallejo it’s time to wake up! Willie McCoy’s niece was just tased.

THE SLAUGHTERING AGAINST OUR PEOPLE MUST BE STOPPED!...

Ronell Foster

Willie McCoy

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/police-commander-said-murder-of-eric-garner-was-not-a-big-deal-en.html

Outrage on Top of Outrage: Police Commander Said Murder of Eric Garner Was "Not a Big Deal"

| revcom.us

 

After NYPD pig Daniel Pantaleo brought down Eric Garner with a chokehold in 2014 as he cried out “I can’t breathe,” another cop on the scene texted their commander that Garner was “most likely DOA”—and the commander’s response was: “Not a big deal.”* This was made public for the first time during the NYPD procedural hearing now going on involving Pantaleo.

Eric Garner was 43 years old when he was murdered, married for over 20 years to his wife, Esaw, with a son starting college, five other children, and two grandchildren. He was someone with a big heart and a great deal to give. His friends called him “Big E” and “Teddy Bear,” a generous man who helped settle disputes among the people. One friend remembered, “He had a hug and smile for everybody. He was always trying to keep the peace.” To the pigs, all this was “not a big deal.”

NOT A BIG DEAL!!! These four words totally capture the utter callousness of these pigs and of their entire system, for whom the incarceration of literally millions upon millions of people over the past decades is NOT A BIG DEAL... for whom evictions of hundreds of thousands of women, especially Black and Latino, is NOT A BIG DEAL... for whom the poisoning of countless children by lead—and more than that, the generations of youth that are condemned to oblivion even before they are born—is NOT A BIG DEAL.

As Bob Avakian says in his filmed speech Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution, after naming just some of the thousands and thousands, especially Black, Latino and Native American, murdered by the police:

If this were the only thing wrong with this system, it would be more than enough reason to sweep it off the Earth!

 


* “‘Not a Big Deal,’ Police Commander Said as Eric Garner Died,” New York Times, 5/16/19. [back]

See also:

Hearing for Cop Who Killed Eric Garner: Count the Ways this System Protects Murdering Cops

 

 

 

 

 

Eric Garner with some of his family

Photo: AP

Bob Avakian: "'Not A Big Deal?!?' Or Reason Enough To Overthrow The Damn System!"

In summer 2018 Bob Avakian spoke about the outrageous murders perpetrated by police in the speech Why We Need An Actual Revolution And How We Can Really Make Revolution.

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/hearing-for-cop-who-killed-Eric-Garner-en.html

Hearing for Cop Who Killed Eric Garner: Count the Ways this System Protects Murdering Cops

| revcom.us

 

Millions of people saw and heard the video. A bunch of cops bringing a man down for the “crime” of selling loose cigarettes. One administers the chokehold that ended the life of Eric Garner. Garner’s last desperate words, "I'm tired of it. This stops today, I did not sell nothing." And then,  “I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe.”

People took to the streets for many days and in different cities. NBA basketball players and other athletes wore “I can’t breathe” T-shirts to games. People across the country demanded justice. But again, like so many other times, the system only responds with a slap in the face.

A 2015 grand jury refused to bring any charges against Daniel Pantaleo, the chokehold cop. A civil rights investigation by the U.S. Department of Justice has been open for four years with no results. Meanwhile Pantaleo has been on “desk duty” all this time getting $120,000 a year. And now? We are led to believe that at last, Pantaleo is being put on trial. But this is pure bullshit.

This is NOT a trial. What started on May 13 was a department procedure, a disciplinary hearing to determine whether or not this murderer broke “protocol” by using a chokehold that is supposedly banned by the NYPD. The charges against Pantaleo are NOT murder, but the “reckless use of a chokehold and intentional restriction of breathing.” And there’s a good chance Pantaleo won’t even be found “guilty” of this.

This hearing is a result of charges being brought about from a Civilian Complaint Review Board. And it must be asked: What does it mean that this hearing has people demanding and hoping Pantaleo will lose his job. When real justice would mean this murderer is behind bars?

The medical examiner’s office ruled this a homicide and that the cause of Garner's death was "compression of neck (choke hold), compression of chest and prone positioning during physical restraint by police.” But Pantaleo’s lawyers are arguing that Eric Garner is to blame for his own death because he was overweight and out of shape. And they say Pantaleo used a “seatbelt maneuver,” not a chokehold. The very terms of this whole “hearing” are fucking outrageous. But this is the way this system works to defend murdering cops.

And there’s more. Pantaleo cannot be found guilty if the hearing only establishes that he violated the ban on chokeholds. A city law requires charges be filed within 18 months of the alleged violation. So since this didn’t happen Pantaleo can only be found guilty of the violation if he committed a crime—either third-degree assault or second-degree strangulation. And a grand jury has already refused to bring such charges against Pantaleo.

And there’s still more. Even if Pantaleo is found “guilty” in this hearing, the most he can get is the loss of some vacation time or be fired. But this might not happen either. The hearing judge can only make a recommendation to the police commissioner, who will then decide to uphold, modify or vacate the ruling.

So many ways to let a murdering cop walk free.

2014 was the year the cops killed Eric Garner. It was the year 18-year-old Michael Brown was killed by a cop in Ferguson. It was the year a cop killed 12-year-old Tamir Rice in Cleveland. And the cops have murdered so many more since then. And time after time after time, the system delivers a verdict of “justifiable homicide.”

In Amerikkka it is perfectly legal for a cop to murder a Black man for no reason at all—in cold blood. This is a system that works to ensure these cops get away with murder. A system of white supremacy and police brutality. A system that needs to be overthrown.

See also:

Outrage on Top of Outrage: Police Commander Said Murder of Eric Garner Was "Not a Big Deal"

 

 

 

                                                                                                           

Video of cop using chokehold to kill Eric Garner

Bob Avakian, "Yes there's a conspiracy, to get the cops off."

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/police-execution-of-pamela-turner-en.html

Baytown, Texas

The Police Execution of Pamela Turner

| revcom.us

 

Late on the night of May 13, a cop shot and killed 44-year-old Pamela Turner, a Black woman, in the parking lot of the Brixton Apartments in Baytown, Texas.

Turner was walking toward her apartment when a Baytown pig confronted her. On a video of the encounter she is heard saying “you’re actually harassing me” as she tries to walk away from the cop. Turner shouted that she was pregnant. But this pig tased her and threw her to the ground. He put his foot on her. Standing right above her, he quickly fired five shots, hitting her at least once. Pamela Turner lay on the asphalt, dying. A white man who witnessed the murder angrily told a TV station, “For a cop to do that... she was shot in cold blood.”

A Litany of Lies

An official with the Baytown police told reporters that the killer cop was “forced” to shoot Pamela Turner. This pig poured bullets at point-blank range into a woman lying on the pavement, but somehow he felt “threatened”?!? Or did he decide to end her life because he knew he could, and wanted to drive home that message.

Baytown police said this cop had “dealt with [Pamela Turner] before and knew she had outstanding warrants.” They claimed that the apartment manager had previously tried to present Turner with an eviction notice. They also claimed that a relative of Turner’s told them she was not pregnant. All these were cheap attempts to justify the murder of Pamela Turner, and portray her as somehow the aggressor in this confrontation.

Pamela’s sister, Antoinette, told KPRC in Houston that she didn’t know if Pamela was pregnant or not, but that she did have two children, and three grandchildren. Antoinette also said that Pamela had previously told her that the cop who killed her (still unnamed as of this writing) had been harassing her.

“Everything Went Wrong”

Neighbors described Pamela Turner as known to just about everyone in the apartments. One woman said, “We talk to her every day. She’s always out walking her dog. She brings little gifts here and there to the kiddos.” A man told a reporter, “That could have been one of our grandmas. I feel like everything went wrong.”

Neighbors knew that Pamela Turner struggled with mental illness, and tried to help her. One woman told a reporter, “She wasn’t mentally competent. We always tried to look after her. She would walk outside at all hours of the night. I would tell the office management she should not be left alone.”

The police knew Turner as well. And as one man from the apartments told a reporter, “If you know she has mental illness, why not ask for backup first before you try and detain her? ... [S]he was barely getting up off the ground and he shot her like a dog. That’s wrong. And he needs to pay for it.”

This Cannot Continue

A man who lives in the Brixton Apartments told a reporter, “This is just giving me more reason not to trust them” [the police]. Definitely, the police should not be trusted. But the problem goes much deeper than that.

The police enforce a system that treats a Black woman with a mental illness as a threat, rather than someone whose life should be cherished and who should receive proper medical care. The police enforce a system that allows them to brutalize and kill a Black woman in front of numerous witnesses, and walk away from it. They enforce a system with laws that allow them to throw people out on the street with no place to go. The police are protected by a system that allows them to kill people, claim they felt “threatened,” and get away with murder time after time after bloody time.

How long will we allow this system to go on? How many more Pamela Turners will die at the hands of this system’s pig enforcers before people get organized to make revolution and end this madness for good? Will we be mourning more Pamela Turners 10, 20, 50 years from now? Or will we get with the revolution and work now to put an end to this madness, at the soonest possible time?

 


Pamela Turner. Photo: Facebook

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/594/suppressed-sandra-bland-video-comes-to-light-en.html

A 21st Century Lynching

Suppressed Sandra Bland Video Comes to Light

| revcom.us

 

On July 13, 2015, Sandra Bland, a 28-year-old Black woman, was found hanging in a jail cell in Waller County, Texas.

On May 7 – almost four years after Sandra’s death – a long-suppressed video Sandra took with her phone as she was arrested has finally come to light. An investigative reporter with WFAA in Dallas recently obtained the video and showed it separately to her sisters and to the family lawyer. It is a key piece of evidence that none of them had seen before. For three-and-a-half years it was in the hands of the Texas Department of Public Safety.

A 21st Century Lynching

Sandra Bland graduated from Prairie View A&M University, a historically Black institution in Waller County. She was returning there from her home in Chicago. She was happy about going back to reunite with old friends and take up a new job.

But after she turned onto the drive leading to the campus, she was pulled over by a Texas state trooper, Brian Encinia. He claimed she hadn’t used a turn signal to change lanes. Within moments, Encinia brutalized and mocked Sandra Bland. He threatened her with his Taser and snarled, “Get out of the car! I will light you up! Get out! Now!” He dragged her out of her car and threw her on the ground. He arrested her and charged her with felony assault on an officer.

From the beginning, police and prosecutors worked feverishly to cover up the truth about Sandra Bland’s arrest, time in their custody, and the circumstances of her death. They charged her with being the aggressor. They released an obviously tampered video of the jail cell they held her in. They declared the cell to be a “crime scene,” but then allowed reporters to trample through it. They claimed Sandra was “suicidal,” but did nothing to provide medical attention. No testimony of what were claimed to be interviews of jail personnel was ever released to Sandra Bland’s lawyers. Her friends and family, with whom she had been in steady communication, were not called to testify to the grand jury investigating the case. Her DNA was not found on the cloth around her neck. Jail logs were falsified. As Shante Needham, one of her sisters, said, “...they have an extremely, extremely good cover-up system.”

Say Her Name: Sandra Bland

The authorities claimed Sandra had committed suicide. But her family, many Prairie View students, and thousands of people across the country fighting to end murder by cop refused to accept the official story. The fight for Justice for Sandra Bland became a cornerstone of the fight to end murder and brutality of Black people by the police.

Encinia was investigated for perjury. He claimed Sandra put his “safety in jeopardy, at more than one time,” and this is why he brutalized and arrested her. But the perjury case never went to trial. A cash settlement was paid to Sandra Bland’s family, and Encinia was barred from being employed in law enforcement.

When Waller County prosecutors dismissed the charge against Encinia, the lawyer for Sandra’s family, Cannon Lambert, told reporters the family was “completely blindsided.” He said Sandra’s mother and sisters had told Texas prosecutors they wanted to go ahead with the trial, and prosecutors told them they would.

The System at Work

But the cover-up and kangaroo court went even deeper.

The video Sandra Bland courageously took shows Encinia harassing and assaulting her with a torrent of physical and verbal abuse. If Sandra’s video had been available to the family and their lawyers, they would have insisted that the prosecution of Encinia go forward. But prosecutors and the Texas state police concealed and suppressed the recording, and lied to Sandra’s family. Shante Needham said, “This [Sandra’s video] not only shows that he [Encinia] lied, but that he really had no business even stopping her. Period. And at the end of the day, he needs to go to jail.”

The video shows that Encinia was in no way threatened by Sandra Bland, that she was holding a cell phone in plain view, and was in fact recording him as he assailed her. He lied, and his lies were covered up by the Texas Department of Public Safety and the office of the Texas Attorney General, which defended him.

From a routine traffic stop to a young woman hanging in a county jail; from a lying cop who walks free, to brutal prison guards; to a racist district attorney’s office; to state police who oversee suppression of evidence, put a video of the arrest in deep storage for years, and a Christian Fascist attorney general who oversees the entire cover-up.

This is the system at work. This is a system in which white supremacy and police brutality are integral components. A system which has no legitimacy and no right to exist.

Sandra Bland recorded her arrest. The video has been suppressed for almost four years by Texas authorities.

Sandra Bland

Bob Avakian: "How Long?! How Many More Times Do the Tears Have to Flow?"

Bob Avakian: "The direct line from the Confederacy to the fascists of today"

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/512/see-and-share-this-talk-en.html

In this Film, Bob Avakian Analyzes the Deep Roots and Driving Forces of Trump/Pence Fascism and What Must Be Done to Stop It.

Watch It Here, and Spread It.

| revcom.us

 

Be part of bringing the most serious answers to the most urgent questions to tens and hundreds of thousands, and ultimately millions.

This talk from Bob Avakian (BA) provides a scientific understanding of the roots of this fascist regime—in the history of the U.S. and the deeper roots in the system of capitalism-imperialism. He does so with passion, humor, humanity, and a deep sense of history. He cuts into the deepest, most agonizing questions, first in the speech and then in a wide-ranging Questions and Answers.

If more people watched this talk, it could change today’s political equation. But far too few have seen this talk, or even know about it. You are needed to be part of changing this.

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Scroll down for the film trailer, videos of the Q&A session following the speech, and clips from the film


Click to view the full speech.

The film and all video clips are also available for download HERE

For instructions to download this film click HERE

 

 

 

Questions and Answers with Bob Avakian

NEW:  Download, share, and watch each Q&A in a separate clip. To download these clips, click the "v" icon on the bottom right of the clip to get to the Vimeo page, and scroll down to the button for "Download"

Q&A: What do you say to the comedians who ridicule Trump/Pence but also run the risk of contributing to normalizing fascism?

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Q&A: If we drive out the Trump/Pence regime, what will replace it?

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Q&A: How can we sustain the massive movement required to drive this regime from power?

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Q&A: What strategies are there to break through the mainstream news whiteout of Refuse Fascism?

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Q&A: How can we protect immigrants targeted directly by this regime?

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Q&A: What's the role of students in the movement to drive out the Trump/Pence regime?

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Q&A: The Democrats are supposed to be the lesser of two evils, but I don't want to vote for them. I know the system sucks, but what do we do in the interim?

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Q&A: As a revolutionary Christian, I believe that we do need this revolution but how can you have religious people not feel alienated?

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Q&A: What's the relationship between fighting fascism and making revolution?

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Q&A: How can we overcome obstacles in reaching out broadly to drive out the Trump/Pence regime?

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Q&A: Millions hate what's happening with the Trump/Pence regime, but does that matter if they don’t act?

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Q&A: Do you think that we need animal liberation?

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Trailer and Clips From the Film:

Clip: "Free Yourself from the GTF!"

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Clip: "For Black people, isn't Trump just more of the same?"

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Clip: "America: the leader of the free world? When was that ever true?"

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Clip: "What's the matter with liberals?"

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Clip: "Slavery? Genocide? And you think fascism can't happen here?"

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Clip: "What are we facing?"

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Clip: "Order or Justice?"

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Clip: "What Must We Do?"

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Clip: "The direct line from the Confederacy to the fascists of today"

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Clip: "Why is it the Democrats can only try to resolve this on the terms of the system?"

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Clip: "The Christian Fascists
Now In Power"

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Clip: "The 'Unholy Alliance' Between Trump and Fundamentalist Christian Fascists"

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Clip: What Has Given Rise to the Situation in Which We Have a Fascist Regime Ruling the U.S.?

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Clip: Why Can't We Rely On the Democratic Party to Root Out the Trump/Pence Fascist Regime?

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Clip: If We Drive Out Trump, Won't We Just Get Pence? And How Can Mass Action Drive Out Trump, Anyway?

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Clip: On What Basis Can Revolutionaries and People Who Are Not Revolutionaries Unite to Drive Out the Regime?

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/refuse-fascism-trump-pence-regime-puts-iran-in-its-crosshairs-en.html

Originally posted at RefuseFascism.org:

The Trump/Pence Regime Puts Iran in its Crosshairs... We Should Be Screaming, but the Silence Is Deafening

| revcom.us

 

by Coco Das

Editor’s Note June 24, 2019: We are reposting this piece by Coco Das, originally posted at RefuseFascism.org, on the escalated threats and danger of war against Iran and what is to be done. She asks: THE QUESTION IS SHARPLY POSED TO EVERYONE WHO KNOWS RIGHT FROM WRONG: AT WHAT POINT DO YOU SAY “ENOUGH!”? This is a question—of morality, of humanity—to be asked of all. Das asks what it will take for people to do what is needed, to stop relying on the Democrats, to act, to step outside the “normal channels”...

The societal response is far from commensurate, as horrors pile up, as catastrophes threaten. All of this is utterly unnecessary; it is the workings and product of the system—the same system that has given rise to this fascist Trump/Pence regime, and of which it is a grotesque manifestation. A radically different and far better world is possible by getting rid of this system through an actual revolution. From this goal and perspective, the imperative—moral and political—is even greater to unite with millions to drive out this fascist regime.  

The Trump/Pence regime is readying warships with a ton of firepower directed at Iran, a dangerous escalation of aggression based on the same rhetoric used to justify the criminal invasion of Iraq, using flimsy evidence of a “new and credible threat” of a planned attack on “American interests.”

Along with allies in Israel and Saudi Arabia, this regime has been laying the groundwork for a war with Iran since Trump’s first overseas visit in 2017. There, they introduced a “strategic vision” for the Middle East that included isolating Iran as a common enemy. In the past month, this vision has come closer to reality.

Imagine being one of the 82 million people in Iran right now. You are staring into the barrel of the most powerful military in the world. You are facing the escalating possibility that your country will be bombed. You wonder if your country will become the next Iraq, plunged into chaos after an American invasion. You take seriously the threats of a powerful lunatic who pulls out of an international nuclear treaty and won’t take his own use of nuclear weapons “off the table.” You plan ahead for economic collapse if the Trump regime’s efforts to stop Iran’s oil exports succeed. You hope your loved ones will survive, will not starve like the people of Yemen. Then you brace yourself as nuclear-capable B-52 bombers are pointed in your direction.

We should be in the streets screaming at the top of our lungs to stop this, refusing to allow this gangster regime to unleash fire and fury on the world! But instead, the silence has been deafening. Whatever is stopping you from acting in a way that is commensurate with the danger and the horror that is about to be unleashed on millions of people, get over it.

THE QUESTION IS SHARPLY POSED TO EVERYONE WHO KNOWS RIGHT FROM WRONG: AT WHAT POINT DO YOU SAY “ENOUGH!”?

At what point do you face the reality that this regime is on the offensive and will not allow itself to be stopped or deterred by what you have been taught are the “normal channels”? At what point do you relocate your sense of justice and humanity and say that just because it isn’t happening to you—yet—doesn’t mean it should not be resisted with actual action?

At what point do you face the reality, for which the past three years and every passing week provide mountains of evidence, that the Democratic Party cares more about preserving this system than it does about preventing and getting rid of fascism and everything that goes with that fascism? At what point do you come to grips with the fact that the Democratic Party will line up in lockstep—and right now is doing everything it can to line you up—for whatever wars this regime is either planning or will “stumble into”?

The Democratic Party is not going to stop these threats against Iran. They are busy reaching across the aisle and campaigning for 2020. We should count on them to oppose a war with Iran as effectively as they opposed the invasion of Iraq and the years of horrors that followed. That is to say, not at all.

The Iranian graphic novelist Marjane Satrapi made a profound statement years ago. “The difference between you and your government is much bigger than the difference between you and me. And the difference between me and my government is much bigger than the difference between me and you. And our governments are very much the same.”

This is even truer now. Our people are the people of the world. Our interests are the interests of humanity. What your government wants you to do for their interests, you must refuse to do.

Only WE can stop this, the millions of us who have a heart and conscience but who are being cajoled into normalizing a fascist nightmare. Now is the time to reset your commitment to maintaining your morality and your humanity. Sign the Refuse Fascism Call to Action, which clearly states the vision and strategy in which, “tens of thousands beginning in several cities and towns, with marches, candlelight vigils, rallies – students, religious communities, immigrants, everyone with a heart for humanity in the streets and not backing down – growing from thousands to hundreds of thousands and eventually millions. Our actions will reflect the values of respect for all of humanity and the world we want – in stark contrast to the hate and bigotry of the Trump/Pence fascist regime. The whole world will take heart.”

Donate to get this message out across the country, manifesting the power of “NO!” and showing people how to refuse to accept the unacceptable.

People all over the world are counting on us to stop this nightmare. Let’s get down to the work of building a movement that will drive out this regime and set whole new terms for society. This is possible, there is a role for everyone, but humanity needs you to step up now.

Coco Das (@coco_das) is a contributing editor to RefuseFascism.org 

 

 

 


Iranian children

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/avakian/bob_avakian-on-the-rise-of-fascism-and-how-to-fight-it-en.html

Bob Avakian On the Rise of Fascism and How to Fight It

| revcom.us

 

 

Bob Avakian On Revolution And The Fight Against Fascism

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Q&A: It looks like there may be a coming civil war between the Democrats and fascists. How should we understand this and act to realign things?

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Q&A: The rise of fascism & struggle in international communist movement

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What would be the next step if the Trump/Pence regime consolidates power?

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How to spread the fighting spirit confronting fascists despite what Dems say?

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Free yourself from the GTF!
Clip from the film by Bob Avakian The Trump/Pence Regime Must Go! In the Name of Humanity, We REFUSE to Accept a Fascist America - A Better World IS Possible

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/joe-veale-on-immigrants-en.html

Black People: Immigrants Are Not Your Enemy—This SYSTEM and the Fascist and Openly White Supremacist Regime Now Governing It ARE

by Joe Veale

| revcom.us

 

Some Black people need to stop opening their mouths, moving their tongues, and allowing the words and thinking of white racist mobs to come out when they talk about immigrants.

To those who run this shit: You are being played big time by Trump, Fox News, and the liberal Democrats who say “we” need to secure “our” borders.

Who in the fuck is “we”!?

And where in the hell did these damn borders come from in the first place!?

Slavery. Genocide. War.

Once again you are being played. It is part of the divide and conquer the oppressor always uses against the oppressed. Played like the Black Buffalo Soldiers were played to carry out genocide against the Native Americans after the Civil War. Played like some of the Cherokee Indians who were allowed to own Black slaves during slavery. Played like the different races amongst prisoners today who are being pitted against each other. Today all this is being put on steroids and taken to a whole other level by the Trump/Pence regime of fascist pigs.

You ever heard of the term “white man’s burden”? It was a term used by the rulers of this system to justify the murder of Native American Indians, Mexicans, and people in Latin America. What is happening today has its root in a system that produced that shit!

Is this what you want? Is this the kind of world you want to live in?

Or do you want to dig up, uproot, overturn—make a revolution that actually overthrows this rotten system and EVERYTHING it is part of?

Look at what is going down.

These fascists and white supremacists of the Trump/Pence regime are blaming immigrants—people from Central America—brown-skinned human beings—for the problems and challenges their system is confronting here, and even more the problems and challenges this global system of exploitation and mass murder is facing around the world. A system of capitalism-imperialism which has raped, looted, and plundered Central America.

One of the main ways Trump/Pence is out to do this is by “Making America White Again.” “Cleansing” it of brown-skinned people unless they have a skill or special desire that they can put to use to keep America as the number one Godfather in the world.

They are seizing people seeking asylum, and sending the parents in one direction and their children in another. This is what is happening at the border as we speak—people looking for a better life locked in cages like wild animals—put in detention centers (concentration camps)—causing them all kinds of unbearable suffering, pain, and death—as they come across the border in search of a better life. These are people trying to escape the bone-crushing poverty in the farm fields and sweatshops—trying to get away from the government-sponsored terrorist death squads—the crime—the rape—the malnourishment—the disease that this system headed by the U.S. capitalist-imperialist class has brought down on the people of Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador as well as other places.

On top of this—the working of this system and the thinking that is part of it has got people who should know better sounding like those white racist mobs who not that long ago burnt down Black neighborhoods, and called Black people rapists, thieves, inferior sub-human beings—Black people who were escaping lynching and Jim Crow terror in the rural South. They were accused of bringing crime—they were accused of coming to steal the jobs of “red blooded” American white men—they were accused of coming to rape the women who “belonged” to such men.

Today you have Trump/Pence saying similar things about immigrants.

But what is really outrageous is that you hear Black people saying this same white supremacist, fascist shit! Black people opening their mouths and sounding like Nazis!

Wake the fuck up, people! Do NOT allow yourself to be played! Stop thinking like an ignorant and arrogant Amerikkkan and start thinking like a Human Being.

You have an important lesson to learn. You potentially have a very crucial role in the revolution we need and can have.

Think about this quote. Do something for it:

There is the potential for something of unprecedented beauty to arise out of unspeakable ugliness: Black people playing a crucial role in putting an end, at long last, to this system which has, for so long, not just exploited but dehumanized, terrorized and tormented them in a thousand ways—putting an end to this in the only way it can be done—by fighting to emancipate humanity, to put an end to the long night in which human society has been divided into masters and slaves, and the masses of humanity have been lashed, beaten, raped, slaughtered, shackled and shrouded in ignorance and misery.

—Bob Avakian

There are two choices, people: live with all this fucking shit—if the world is still here—or make revolution.

 

Bob Avakian, "Why do people come here from all over the world?"

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/how-to-hide-an-empire-en.html

Check It Out...

How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States, by Daniel Immerwahr

| revcom.us

 

Daniel Immerwahr has written a valuable history of the U.S. territorial empire. He uses that term to describe lands and peoples conquered and colonized by the U.S. and ruled under its jurisdiction. Much of this is hidden and suppressed history. As Immerwahr says early in the book: “At various times, the inhabitants of the U.S. Empire have been shot, shelled, starved, interned, dispossessed, tortured, and experimented on. What they haven’t been, by and large, is seen.”

The book divides this history of America’s territorial empire into three phases. The first, for much of the 19th century, is westward expansion on the U.S. mainland—centrally involving the genocidal extermination, expulsion, and forced containment of Native Americans.

The second phase takes place mainly outside the North American continent. There is the annexation of uninhabited islands in the Caribbean and Pacific; then Alaska; and, later, from 1898 until 1900, the conquest and absorption of the Philippines, Puerto Rico, Guam, Hawai′i, Wake Island, and other Pacific territories into an overseas empire. This is what Immerwahr maps as “the greater United States.

He tells of America’s brutal takeover of the Philippines. It is a story of waterboarding torture, concentration camps, “take-no-prisoners” military tactics, and deliberate starvation—resulting in the deaths of some 775,000 Filipinos between 1899 and 1903. He tells of colonized Puerto Rico being turned into a grisly research laboratory for the U.S. medical industry. Puerto Ricans served as subjects for experimental medical research—from mustard gas to birth control pills and cancer treatment.

The book reveals how racism and white supremacy, under the banner of “Manifest Destiny,” are completely entwined with the forging of America’s empire.

The peak of the U.S. territorial empire came at the end of World War 2. Added up, the population of America’s colonies (like Puerto Rico) and military occupations (as in parts of Korea and all of Japan) was 135 million. That number is slightly more than the population on the mainland at the time!

Immerwahr argues that the third and most recent phase of territorial empire pivots on the establishment of a network of overseas military installations straddling the globe. These 800 bases serve as staging grounds for military aggression (like U.S. bombing missions), as GPS antenna stations for drone attacks, and as detention centers and torture sites, like Guantánamo Bay in Cuba.

Immerwahr does not address the U.S.’s post-World War 2 strategy of neocolonialism. This is the vast modern-day colonialism of indirect rule over countries in Africa, Latin America, and Asia. It is mainly exercised through client regimes that serve U.S. imperialism and that are dependent on the U.S. economically and militarily. This is a weakness of the book—but Immerwahr’s focus is on the territorial dimensions of U.S. imperialism.

There’s a tremendous amount of illuminating detail in the book. There are helpful charts and maps. And Immerwahr weaves his narrative of “the greater United States” with outrage over the crimes of the U.S. empire and with compassion for its subjects and victims. Recommended.

 

 

 

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/595/refuse-fascism-alabama-all-the-way-assault-on-roe-v-wade-en.html

Originally posted at RefuseFascism.org:

Alabama: "All the Way" Assault on Roe v. Wade

| revcom.us

 

by Lina Thorne

Criticizing other state legislatures that have put together various “heartbeat” abortion ban bills, the author of the Alabama law that just passed said, “Why not go all the way?” His Alabama ban includes no exceptions for rape or incest, and promises to punish doctors that perform abortions with sentences for up to 99 years in prison.

Eric Johnston, the Birmingham lawyer that wrote the Alabama ban, has been fighting for more than 30 years to overturn Roe. He, like many others in his movement, are now chomping at the bit to take down the immediate barrier to their goal of banning abortion throughout the country: the Supreme Court decision from 1973 that ruled that no law could interfere with a woman’s private choice to end a pregnancy (with some limitations). They’re quite certain that one of these oppressive laws will make it in front of the Supreme Court and set a new precedent, with Brett Kavanaugh and Neal Gorsuch in position to make that ruling.

There’s no question, we’re teetering on the brink of a post-Roe reality in this country. The point is, what do we do about it? Some of the various and assorted plans I’ve heard:

– Hunker down and stockpile Plan B (the emergency contraception pill).

– Lobby to pass as many pro-abortion laws in the “blue states” that aren’t yet controlled by fascist legislatures. If you’re really ambitious, talk about developing underground railroads to bring women from fascist-controlled areas to these oases if they need abortions.

– Train yourself (or make friends with someone who is trained) in how to DIY home abortions using a few handy household tools!

– Look into the development of more floating clinics ala the Women on Waves boats that assist women in countries like Ireland, Poland and Guatemala (Ireland has since lifted its anti-abortion law).

And then we have this opinion in the pages of the Sunday Review of the New York Times: let’s just develop networks of misoprostol distribution.

Cari Sietstra writes: “...we can work to fully decriminalize self-induced abortions. This is an area where all Americans, including pro-life Americans, can work together.”

Um, no. With all due respect to Ms. Sietstra for what I’m sure is genuine concern for women’s health... you’re missing the point. Abortion is more than healthcare, and the “pro-life” forces you refer to are in fact Christian fascists – many of whom are not only more than okay with forcing a 12-year-old to give birth to her brother, but have been willing for decades to commit acts of terror to force women and girls into this position of utter and complete subjugation. It was Birmingham, for example, where Eric Rudolph carried out the bombing of the New Woman, All Women Health Care Clinic in 1998 which resulted in the death of a security guard and the maiming of a nurse... Previously he had bombed the Olympic Park in Atlanta in 1996 – because he was angry that the Olympics “celebrate the ideals of global socialism.”

Under Trump, the anti-abortion movement is not attacking clinics (for the most part) or murdering doctors – that’s because they see the regime carrying out their agenda for them. But if we lose sight of what that movement is all about, we are lost. There is no middle ground with those who want to strip half of humanity of our fundamental right to control our own bodies. Abandoning the women in fascist-controlled states to the dominion of their oppressors is not an option, either.

Safe and legal access to abortion is essential to the bedrock foundation of a functioning, humane society (or one approaching that status). The right to abortion can’t be abandoned in the name of “more realistic” solutions: whether technocratic or absurdly individualistic. There’s simply no way to avoid that this is going to come down to a struggle for power throughout society – and in the name of humanity, for women and everyone here and around the world, it’s past time we take to the streets and demand that the Trump/Pence regime must go. Nothing short of removing this whole illegitimate regime from power will stop this nightmare.... let’s unite and make it happen before clinics are dismantled, doctors are locked up, and more women die from self-induced or back alley abortions.

 

 

 

 

No! In the name of humanity, we refuse to accept a fascist America!

RefuseFascism.org is a movement of people coming from diverse perspectives, united in the recognition that the Trump/Pence Regime poses a catastrophic danger to humanity and the planet, and that it is our responsibility to drive them from power through non-violent protests that grow every day until our demand is met.

Go to RefuseFascism.org to learn more and find out how to participate.

Refuse Fascism protest against Mike Pence, July, 2018

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You’ve read this article, now think about the crucial role revcom.us plays.  White supremacy and fascism are running rampant, and women’s basic rights are being ripped away.  America threatens wars on Venezuela and Iran, as it terrorizes immigrant families and wantonly plunders our environment—imperiling humanity’s very future.  At revcom.us you learn where these horrors come from, how they can be ended through an actual revolution, and how people are working now toward revolution.  You can find, engage and spread the work of Bob Avakian, the leader of this revolution, the architect of the new communism, and author of a concrete blueprint for a new society moving toward full emancipation. So become part of fighting for humanity’s future: sustain or donate now.

 

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Permalink: https://revcom.us/a/596/message-from-the-national-revolution-tour-en.html

Special REVOLUTION newspaper issue, May 2019

"You Think You're Woke...
But You're Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare

This System Cannot Be Reformed,
It Must Be Overthrown!"

A Message from: The National Get Organized
for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

| revcom.us

 

To you

who are fed up with this society and “solutions” that are no solution...

To you

who are angry and defiant and want to see an end to the white supremacy, the patriarchy and its many forms of gender oppression, the persecution of immigrants, the imperialist wars and occupations and threats, and the capitalist plunder and destruction of the environment—an end to all, or any, of the horrible forms of oppression and exploitation that define and intertwine with this capitalist-imperialist society...

To you

who seek not justice for yourself or even just your own people, but the Emancipation of ALL Humanity...

There Is a Way Out of This Madness!

5-2-6: 5 STOPS, 2 CHOICES, AND 6 POINTS OF ATTENTION - Easy to remember: concentrating the path to getting organized for revolution

5 STOPS—five horrific forms of oppression that this system can't reform away. The 5 STOPS:

STOP

Genocidal Persecution, Mass Incarceration, Police Brutality and Murder of Black and Brown People!

STOP

The Patriarchal Degradation, Dehumanization, and Subjugation of All Women Everywhere, and All Oppression Based on Gender or Sexual Orientation!

STOP

Wars of Empire, Armies of Occupation, and Crimes Against Humanity!

STOP

The Demonization, Criminalization and Deportations of Immigrants and the Militarization of the Border!

STOP

Capitalism-Imperialism from
Destroying Our Planet!

Spread these everywhere

2 CHOICES:

"...we have two choices: either, live with all this—and condemn future generations to the same, or worse, if they have a future at all—or, make revolution!"

—Bob Avakian

Spread this everywhere

6 POINTS OF ATTENTION which The Revolution Club upholds, lives by, and fights for.... Spread them. Take them up.

1 We base ourselves on and strive to represent the highest interests of humanity: revolution and communism. We do not tolerate using the revolution for personal gain.

2 We fight for a world where ALL the chains are broken. Women, men, and differently gendered people are equals and comrades. We do not tolerate physically or verbally abusing women or treating them as sexual objects, nor do we tolerate insults or “jokes” about people’s gender or sexual orientation.

3 We fight for a world without borders, and for equality among different peoples, cultures and languages. We do not tolerate insults, “jokes” or derogatory names about a person’s race, nationality, or language.

4 We stand with the most oppressed and never lose sight of their potential to emancipate humanity—nor of our responsibility to lead them to do that. We work to win people of all backgrounds to take part in the revolution, and do not tolerate revenge among the people.

5 We search for and fight for the truth no matter how unpopular, even as we listen to and learn from the observations, insights and criticisms of others.

6 We are going for an actual overthrow of this system and a whole better way beyond the destructive, vicious conflicts of today between the people. Because we are serious, at this stage we do not initiate violence and we oppose all violence against the people and among the people.

Spread these everywhere

BROADSHEET PDFs

(To order printed copies, contact Revolution, c/o RCP Publications, Box 3486, Merchandise Mart,
Chicago, IL 60654-0486 • 773-227-4066 • rcppubs@hotmail.com)

PAGE 1 - Download PDF

 

PAGE 2-3 - Download PDF

 

PAGE 4 - Download PDF

 

 

IMAGES FOR SOCIAL MEDIA

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“You Think You’re Woke...
But You’re Sleepwalking Through A Nightmare —

This System Cannot Be Reformed, It Must Be Overthrown!”

The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

Make a REAL Difference - Spread the Word - Get Organized for Revolution

What You Can Do Today

 1. Distribute this Special Issue of REVOLUTION: The “5-2-6”

  • Get this issue out far and wide.
    The 5 Stops, the 2 Choices, and the 6 Points of Attention that are in the centerfold simply state: Why we need a revolution – the 5 Stops; and, why if you want these outrages to stop you have 2 Choices; and if you choose to act in the interests of humanity: here are the 6 principles that the Revolution Clubs uphold, live by, and fight for today. THIS PROVIDES THE BASIC AND SIMPLE APPROACH TO INTRODUCING PEOPLE TO THE REVOLUTION YOURSELF.
  • You can also post the 5-2-6 on social media; see this page, or go to www.revcom.us/revolutiontour/
  • Let us know your thoughts and questions at: revolution.reports@yahoo.com

2. Join the Revolution Club or, start one where you are.

  • The Revolution Club is where people like you can take part in, and represent for, the revolution in an organized way as you learn more about the revolution: its scientific method and approach, its leadership, strategy and goals.
  • The 6 Points of Attention (the POA’s) are the principles around which the Revolution Clubs are organized. Discuss them with others, form a group and distribute them. Get in touch with the national Revolution Clubs at www.revcom.us/revolutionclub/ and we’ll help you get going.

3. Donate and Raise Funds for the revolution. The Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour needs big funds to be able to send teams of organizers across the country over the next year. Sustain the tour with a monthly contribution. When you raise funds you raise awareness. Go online to www.revcom.us/revolutiontour/.

 

Bob Avakian

Get Into:
Bob Avakian (BA)
the leader of the revolution

We have a great strength in the leadership of Bob Avakian (BA), who over decades has developed the new communism, qualitatively advancing the science. BA breaks down why reality is the way it is, and how people can change it for the better.

He has developed the science, the strategy, and the concrete vision and blueprint for a radically different and much better society and world in the Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America. At the same time, BA deeply understands and connects with the most oppressed, and he provides strategic leadership for the movement today.

The National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour

The National Tour to Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution is travelling the country over the next year to involve you and thousands of people like you in this movement for an actual revolution. We are working to develop an organized and growing force, of thousands now, so that we can have an increasing impact on the whole country—with the whole world in mind, preparing for the time when we really could make a real revolution. To find out more and support the tour go to: www.revcom.us/revolutiontour/.

 

 

 

 

 

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