Revolution #261, February 26, 2012

“Keep the Whole World in Your Hearts and Minds”

Posted March 1, 2012

The following speech was given by Andy Zee, spokesperson for Revolution Books, NYC, at the Occupy rally in Union Square on February 28, 2012:

Today we say to the 1% and to the political and police structures that enforce their interests that your suppression of Occupy must stop. We are creating a political situation—an understanding—an ethos—where every time these bullying police pepper spray a student, or a grandmother... 1,000 more see them as thug enforcers of a system that has no future for the youth or the elderly. Where every cop baton swung into the gut of a protester... every rubber bullet ordered by mayors and governors and the Obama administration causes more people to see them as the representatives of a system that destroys lives of millions of people here and around the world.... Every lie the media tells must become reason for more people to say "Enough—not in my name—I stand with Occupy and you have to come through me."

By what we do today more people can come to see the links between the violence this system brings down on legitimate protest and the daily violence it carries out—from the genocidal mass incarceration of millions of Black and Latino youth … to murdering people in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and the Middle East with drones … millions from Africa to the U.S. hungry and dispossessed of jobs and homes. What hypocrisy and BS for you to say that you had to evict Occupy because of a few ugly and repugnant acts of sexual violence [ed note: one of the pretexts for removing occupiers were complaints of sexual harassment] when every 15 seconds in the U.S. a woman is beaten and 25% of female college students will be raped or sexually assaulted while in college. It’s this system that needs to be evicted.

I speak today for Revolution Books and I say WE NEED A REVOLUTION. We are building a movement for a revolution based on a new synthesis of communism developed by Bob Avakian to bring about a world “where human beings everywhere would be free of exploitation and oppression, where people could really flourish, where humanity could be fit caretakers of the earth.”  Don’t say that can’t happen. There is a strategy. The workings of the system give rise to crises where people are more open to big ideas and change. In such moments, advances can be made in the work of getting to revolution and a whole new society.

Occupy broke open acceptance of the status quo. People began to ask why. Does it have to be like this? They put their lives on the line. A frozen spirit of resistance began to thaw and a new wind of change began to blow. Be clear: Even this questioning and beginning resistance was intolerable to those who rule and they methodically moved to crush Occupy. That alone speaks loudly that this economic and political system has nothing to offer but brute force.

Now, the continuing suppression of Occupy poses new questions. But, in taking this on, more people can come to see the intolerable injustice and move into struggle.

Today we are showing that. We come from very different political perspectives and with different goals. That’s part of the process. Principled debate and ferment are essential to changing the world. Blaming and targeting so-called "bad" protesters, so-called "bad" occupiers, or engaging in anti-communism weakens the struggle against the system we confront.

Today we unite that we will not allow Occupy to be suppressed. To all occupiers: Make plans—continue to struggle against what this system does. But, recognize and take on the suppression and call forward many more to stand against it.  And to everyone else: You have a responsibility to mobilize and act.

Occupy has been shown the instruments of unjust state power and they are formidable.

But there are two things we have... that they do not, and can never, have: (1) Justice. That is on our side. (2) The people—potentially in their millions—whose interests are not with immoral and illegitimate suppression and who can be mobilized to stand with Occupy.

Today this phase of the struggle has begun. Dare to struggle. Dare to win. Keep the whole world in your hearts and minds.


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