Thursday, October 27, 2016

Hillary and Michelle and the Ties That Bind

Richard Mellor

Afscme Local 444, retired

This is class solidarity folks. For stating the obvious, that it is the most important bond, the strongest bond, you can receive considerable slack from the left and liberal petty bourgeois. Those of color and their white allies.

You might be called a "class reductionist" by some. Most workers haven't a clue what it means but the petit bourgeois use it a lot and workers overly influenced by this class can pick it up.

The issue of class is obscured in so many ways in the US. We don't even call ourselves workers, we're middle class here. This is not to say other social divisions and the oppression of social minorities are not important, should be ignored, and some activists and socialists do that and it is very harmful to our cause. But in the last analysis, these people defend their class interests. Thatcher defended hers as she savaged millions of working class women. Michael Jordan defended his when he refused to meet with Vietnamese workers who came to the US seeking support and help in combating the brutal conditions in their workplaces, rape, beatings etc., he was after all, earning some $20 million a year from Nike and co and the fact the Vietnamese are "people of color" meant nothing to him.

There is no national unity or color unity between the Chinese workers here in Chinatown whose language skills limit their choices of employment to Chinese bosses who salivate at the thought that these workers are so vulnerable and limited in choices that they can pay them next to nothing and treat them shabbily and they are too vulnerable to complain.

Michelle Obama has no problem hugging her class sister Hillary Clinton. When we approach workers, all workers with the intent of raising class unity we must be sensitive to special oppression, the "other" issues that people face, some devastating like incarceration rates or family violence, as women for instance or disabled people or workers of color. But to overcome these social divisions that the 1% use to divide us we must always approach it form a position of class unity; does our approach strengthen it or weaken it, that should be the guiding principle.

These two in this picture know exactly what class solidarity is about.

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