Uniting in Struggle, Organizing for Revolution

Beautiful Rising in Santa Ana—Joyous, Internationalist, Revolutionary

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The sight of dozens of mainly Latino people marching through downtown Santa Ana, California, shouting “Black Lives Matter!” on Saturday afternoon, June 27, was absolutely beautiful. A unity march brought together the fight for Black Lives with the demand “No more kids in cages!” and also merged powerfully for a short time with a protest against the occupation of Palestine. It was initiated by a Latina from the area who had never led a protest before and reached out to the Revolution Club and other groups to take this up with her. The collectivity of groups and individuals that led this together was part of the beauty and power of it, and the large Revolution—Nothing Less! banner became the symbol of unity of the march and the speak-out afterwards.

The opening rally and march involved various groups putting forth different programs in an overall spirit of unity and appreciation including the Revolution Club, Free R Kids that has been leading protests all over the LA Region, Refuse Fascism, and a group of Brown Berets who drove all the way from Colorado. When it arrived at the Palestinian rally, both protests were really strengthened by this coming together, the unity was very real, people talking about their own experiences of oppression and about what they have learned about each other’s oppression and their struggles for liberation. There was a real indictment of America that was part of the Palestinian rally that strengthened that sentiment among everyone.

When the march arrived back at the park where it started, the Revolution—Nothing Less! banner was the backdrop to the rally and speak-out, where several people from organizations spoke as well as others in the crowd who wanted to talk. The people who spoke from Free R Kids made important contributions to the character of the whole thing. The founder of it talked about how people come here from all over the world because of what the U.S. does to their countries, and he talked about how we have to stand up for all children, Black, Brown, white, they are all our children. He said the R in the name is for revolution, but not one that tears everything down because you need a plan of what to do after that, instead it is a revolution of changing minds.

A speaker from the same group told the story of how she was jailed and separated from her mother by the immigration authorities when she was four years old. It was a heart-wrenching speech filled with determination to do everything possible not to let this happen to anyone else. An organizer who comes out of the street life brought up two really young guys from one of the neighborhoods in Santa Ana to point out they are part of this, and a bit later an older guy who lives nearby and was hearing the protest came over to say he was from a different and opposed neighborhood of those young guys but now we are coming together.

Michelle spoke again for the Revolution Club, indicting America and calling for people to burn the flag with the Revolution Club on July 4. She talked about how a new society is necessary and possible, and how there IS a plan for that, we have the leadership of Bob Avakian and the Constitution he’s written for a new socialist republic in North America. She gave people a sense of who this leader is and called on people to get with this, giving recognition to people there who had already put on the Revolution—Nothing Less! T-shirt during the march, including two young women who had come up to stand with her while she spoke.

Towards the end of the rally, Chantelle from Refuse Fascism spoke and made a really important contribution to the whole thing, bringing to life the need to stay in the streets and drive the fascist regime from power. The rally ended with a poem by the woman who had initiated all of this, conveying her love of the people for whom she is fighting.

When the rally was over, the Revolution Club told everyone that anyone who wanted to talk and learn more about the revolution could join the little meet-up happening right then. About seven new people stuck around to do that and three who have already started to get involved before that day. Some others who had also put on the T-shirts earlier had to leave, but gave a way to stay in contact. In this gathering, people went around in a circle and introduced themselves and said something about why they were there at that protest and why they were there in this revolution gathering. Several members of the Revolution Club were part of doing that as well, with a diversity of experience and thinking.

Just that process of going around and people meeting and hearing from each other in this kind of way was pretty precious. People were able to get a sense of a movement for revolution and stepping into that with other people. After that round of things, we told everyone about beginning plans for an anti-July 4th protest and celebration, and read quote 1:31 from BAsics to give people an introduction to Bob Avakian. Then we read out loud the “No More” flyer which gives people a way to know what to do now to start working on making revolution. And then we broke up the formal gathering and people talked with each other in smaller groupings for a while.

Without trying to get into everything, one thing that stood out from these conversations is how many people really are looking for what can put an end to oppression, even while they are working on many things short of revolution. A guy with a “Defund the Police” sign said he is generally more drawn to anarchism, but he is really happy to have found an organized group with a plan for how to make fundamental change. A guy who had joined from the Palestinian rally said he has been protesting for Palestine as long as he can remember, together with his parents, and it was refreshing to find a group that doesn’t ultimately lead people back to politicians and voting. Two women who came together said they have been talking about revolution and one said she thinks it will take war to actually put an end to this system. And they all had thoughtful questions about things and listened to each other and want to work together on the anti-4th celebration.

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.

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

Order the book HERE
Download the book in ePub format HERE



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