Message to the Million Woman March, October 24, 1997, from the RCP,USA
Revolutionary Worker #930, November 2, 1997
It's right on time. Black women--and all oppressed sisters--taking to the streets to protest all the ways the system keeps the people down. Strong. Eyes on the future. Determined to fight for equality and justice. Saying: The Time is Now!
The nightmare of Amerikkka 1997 ruins lives and breaks heart and soul. More Black women in prison....more women thrown off welfare. Homeless. Battered. Unemployed. More of our fathers, brothers, sons, criminalized, incarcerated, shot down by men in blue. More children with no kinda education, no kinda future, no hope.
The system downpresses and sets us up against each other: Black-and-blue, dog-eat-dog relations between men and women. CIA-crack pumped into our communities. Our children stolen by cruel social services. Our young men unemployed, dissed and targeted. The hopes and dreams of teenage women collapsed into motherhood. Ghetto schools turned into jails. Hospitals and clinics, closed down. Heartless commands to "help yourself"--covering for cruel cutbacks.
Look at our beautiful young sisters: Their potential squashed by poverty and domestic slavery--while never-did-an-honest-day-of-work congressmen call them "lazy, welfare queens."
Look at our beautiful brothers, full of intelligence and energy: Locked out of education and jobs, locked up in prisons, lost in crime and empty macho--while politicians spread racist lies about "predators with bad genes."
Look at our beautiful immigrant sisters and brothers: Doing bone-aching, dirty work, day after day. Taking care of someone else's kids, picking fruits and vegetables, waiting tables--while law makers talk about "alien moochers" who need to "go back where they came from."
In a situation like this, a real rising of women can gladden the hearts, stiffen spines and raise the sights of all those seeking real liberation.
What are the forces of destruction putting us in this bad situation? What is the solution?
The system wants to put the blame on us. But it's the system that's to blame for these bitter realities. A system that has white supremacy and women's oppression built into its very foundation and on every level. A rip-off-people-all-over-the-world, capitalist system that will keep sucking our blood until it is gotten rid of.
From the rape of our sisters on the slave ships to the dissing of single mothers... from the age-old traditions that treated women like the property of men to the domestic abuse of today, male domination and patriarchy has been a disaster for women.
From the first Africans stolen into slavery...to 100 years of Jim Crow segregation with its brutality and lynching...to last-hired, first -fired in the factories of the urban "promised lands"...this capitalist system has been a disaster for Black people.
From Amisted to the underground railroad. From the women who fought Jim Crow to the Black Panther women in the 60s. To the women standing up against injustice today. Every chapter of the people's history tells a proud tradition of women leaders and fighters. Frontline grandmothers, mothers, sisters and daughters--handing down hopes and dreams and determination to get real liberation, no matter what it takes. With the sisters on the front lines our struggle against the common enemy is strong.
The proletarian revolution fights for real equality between men and women. We don't need dominators. We need brothers standing with sisters, fighting together against our common enemy. We need revolutionary role models--men and women--standing up to the enemy's attacks and fighting to free the people.
We revolutionaries know that our real power ain't as voters or consumers. Our real power is when we act as revolutionary people, standing together with proletarians and oppressed people of all nationalities here and around the world to take on this system and its brutal enforcers.
And we need new, revolutionary morality and standards. Family without true equality means patriarchy and subordination for women. A woman who cannot control her own body and reproductive life is still a slave. A woman who does not have the right to decide if and when to have children can't fully and equally contribute in every sphere of life. And until we have a society where we can collectively rear the next generation, women will not be free.
Imagine our schools, workplaces and communities as strongholds of revolutionary resistance. Imagine organizing collective solutions to the problems we face instead of looking to the oppressors to solve our problems. Imagine a real revolutionary struggle to bring this system down. Imagine a new society where the common people run society, in common, for the common good of all.
How can we get from today to the point where it could be possible to launch a revolutionary uprising that could turn things rightside up--when the system is in a serious crisis and the time is right? We need a new direction, a serious strategy for change.
Our party, the RCP, is dedicated to building a revolutionary movement--a powerful united front under the leadership of the proletariat, the class of people who have nothing to lose but our chains.
We are building a movement where the full emancipation of women is a priority. We need the sisters in the front lines--in every aspect of the struggle!
We are dedicated to building a powerful fight against the oppression of Black people--and determined to unite people of all nationalities to be a part of that fight.
We are out in the ghettos and barrios--where the enemy's attacks fall heaviest--helping our proletarian people to build revolutionary organization, consciousness and resistance. And we are working 24-7 to unite all who can be united against the real enemy. We invite all the sisters aching for real and profound change to dialogue with us and to join forces against our common enemy.
It's right on time. The time is now. And women hold up half the sky.
Break the Chains! Unleash the Fury of Women as a Mighty Force for Revolution!
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