The pandemic and the climate and ecological crisis struck when the world capitalist system had shown its inability to extricate itself from a prolonged economic slump. They deepened it. Despite the happy face that government and corporate economists paint, the opposite story is told by people’s lives.
The long-simmering outrage of Black masses has broken out into a movement against this racist society, particularly its pattern of racist killings by the police. It has not only reverberated internationally, but also made itself felt in the battle of ideas and the sphere of theory.
Protests erupted following the decision by a St. Louis County grand jury not to indict Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for the cold-blooded murder of 18-year-old Michael Brown. Thousands marched under the slogan “Black Lives Matter!” These demonstrations grew in the wake of the equally outrageous decision of a Staten Island grand jury not to indict NYPD officer Daniel Pantaleo for the murder of Eric Garner.
Protests erupted after the cops who murdered Michael Brown and Eric Garner were let off. They mark a new moment of rebellion against a social order in which Black youth are made to live continuously suspended over an abyss of non-existence.
The passion to tear up this deeply racist society by the roots calls for the fullest development in activity and thought.
From the July-August 2014 issue of News & Letters
UNCHAINING THE DIALECTIC
Raya Dunayevskaya’s 1953 breakthrough on Hegel’s Absolute Idea enabled her to illuminate a path not traveled by previous generations of revolutionaries. She is quite emphatic in raising the importance of “Unchaining the Revolutionary Dialectic” (May-June 2014 N&L), and capturing what [=>]
ENVIRONMENT UNDER THREAT
Recently I attended a talk near Berkeley, Calif., by a retired professor about the effect of environmental damage on political instability in the Middle East. He spoke disparagingly of Arab countries, but was full of praise for Israeli technology and “adaptive science.” He stated that autocracy was the best way to confront [=>]
Garment workers and organizers from Bangladesh and Los Angeles discussed their labor conditions at the downtown L.A. Garment Center
Walmart store and warehouse workers, with the support of several busloads of national NOW conference participants, rallied at the downtown Chicago Walmart store.
Nationwide protests erupted immediately after the outrageous July 13 acquittal of George Zimmerman for murdering 17-year-old African-American high school student Trayvon Martin last year. Within three days, thousands of protesters came out in dozens of cities, and a new group called the Dream Defenders began a 31-day occupation of Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s office.
Rana Plaza, the building that collapsed in Dhaka, Bangladesh, on April 24, killing 1,127 workers—most of them young women—was constructed illegally. It is easy to show negligence and affix blame to this or that individual. But the greater truth lies within a system that is based on the most production at the lowest cost, with workers’ lives—and deaths—regarded as only one more cost of production.
Workers struck at Walmart in Pico Rivera, Calif., on Nov. 20, demanding an end to retaliation against workers who speak out. On Nov. 23, the day after Thanksgiving, [=>]