That the United States has always been so deeply afflicted with structural and cultural racism that it sometimes goes unnoticed and needs to be addressed is hardly disputable. Who is anybody kidding? Have you seen U.S. history? Have you seen the United States?
The sloppy fascist Donald Trump may no longer reside in the White House but he’s back on the hate rally campaign trail selling his big Hitlerian Stolen Election Lie. Meanwhile, Trumpist white nationalism is booming in the “red states,” where Amerikaner Republicans hold the reins.
The Republican Party – described by Noam Chomsky years ago as “the most dangerous organization on Earth” – is now a fascist party (I will develop this point further in a future report on the state-level Republican jihad against Critical Race Theory). The sheer equivalence some “radicals” posit between the dismal neoliberal Democratic and the white-nationalist Amerikaner GOP is false. Just for starters, try to imagine the self-described democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez or for that matter, the corporate liberal Nancy Pelosi winning a Congressional seat in Kentucky, Iowa, or Wyoming and the QANazi Marjorie Taylor Green being elected to the U.S. House from Brooklyn, Chicago, or San Francisco.
It was to be expected. Following the worldwide exposure of an active campaign of ethnic cleansing in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of occupied East Jerusalem’s and Israel’s murderous 11 day campaign raining death and destruction on the captive population of Gaza, the apologists for Israel went into full on damage control. Anyone who decried these obvious injustices and war crimes were swiftly labeled “antisemitic” or extremist.
Mexico once had a problem with a local provincial government promoting illegal immigration from the United States into Mexico in order to engage in the illegal slavery of illegally trafficked people. The locality involved was called Texas. For years, Mexico let Texas get away with its lawlessness and immorality, including not paying taxes, and including killing Mexican soldiers. Then it sent an army to lay down the law. Texans warned each other that soldiers were coming “to give liberty to our slaves, and to make slaves of ourselves” (meaning to end the actual enslavement of anyone and to require that people abide by laws and pay taxes).
Socialist political parties should work to connect rather than direct progressive struggles and organisations.
A mass uprising – one of the largest in the history of the United States – exploded after police murdered George Floyd in late May 2020. While thousands stormed the streets, some seasoned organisers mused on Twitter whether to even support the rebellion. Others were flat-footed at best, doing nothing more than issuing tone-deaf statements. Still others felt immediate solidarity, but stumbled to find a meaningful way to connect with the movement as explicit socialists.
The similarities between the movement to abolish war and the movement to abolish police and prisons jump out at me anew when reading Mariame Kaba’s We Do This ‘Til We Free Us, which is about police and prison abolition. The book has a foreword by Naomi Murakawa that includes this:
Dear President Biden,
Your broken promises are piling up. I took note of these headlines in just the last couple of weeks: “Joe Biden Surrenders On Federal Unemployment Benefits,” “Biden Drops Student Loan Forgiveness From Latest Budget,” “Biden offers to keep 2017 Trump tax cuts intact in infrastructure counteroffer to GOP,” “U.S. Says It Will Not Rejoin Open Skies Treaty With Russia.”
The sense of relief that came over many Americans after the malignant pandemo-fascist Donald Trump’s removal from power seems increasingly misplaced. The feeling of relaxation is understandable. The pandemic is in significant retreat inside the U.S. as summer dawns, thanks in part to the Biden administration’s vaccination efforts. The improved U.S. health outlook combined with Biden and the Congressional Democrats’ large opening stimulus package to spark some modest economic recovery and hiring expansion. Significantly vaccinated fans, shoppers, diners, vacationers, drinkers, entertainment seekers, and gamblers have returned to American major league baseball, basketball, and hockey games, beaches, bars, restaurants, hotels, casinos, movie theaters, concerts, and shopping malls.
by New Frame
Johannesburg, South Africa
June 6, 2021
The social devastation of mass unemployment renders South Africa a non-viable society for millions. Something must give.
Unemployment in the United States peaked at 24.9% during the Great Depression. On the eve of Adolf Hitler’s ascension to power in 1933, unemployment in Germany was at 24%. The protests that launched the Arab Spring in 2011 were ascribed, in part, to what the International Labour Organization called an “extremely high youth unemployment rate of 23.4%”.
Slavery lives on in U.S.-American life, crippling “our” supposed grand “democracy” in numerous ways. The massive wealth, income, and health gaps between Black and white Americans and the related persistent segregation and mass arrest and incarceration of Black Americans cannot be properly understood without reference to the two and a half centuries in which Black Americans were enslaved.
Unlike ever before, Israel is finally seeing some major pushback that is international in scope. With its ongoing ethnic cleansing campaign exemplified by the expulsion of Palestinian families from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah, its attacks on worshippers at one of the holiest sites in Islam, Al Aqsa, and on the holiest of holidays, and its murderous and criminal assault on the captive population of Gaza, Israel has been put in an uncomfortable spotlight. But the key to dismantling its entrenched apartheid system lies in keeping that spotlight fixed, especially now that a ceasefire has been implemented. If attention is diverted, as Israel desperately wants, then it will become even more intransigent, especially as the Biden administration continues its business-as-usual approach.