Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1097/31150
From The Socialist newspaper, 5 August 2020
Socialist Party black and Asian members' meeting
Fighting to end racism and capitalism
Black Lives Matter protesters, Hyde Park, 3.6.20, photo Socialist Party (Click to enlarge)
Isai Priya, London Socialist Party
A very well-attended Socialist Party black and Asian members' meeting on 25 July was an opportunity to discuss the Covid crisis, the Black Lives Matter demos, and how we can build a mass working-class movement to smash racism.
Hugo Pierre, one of the elected black members' reps on the national executive of public sector union Unison, speaking in a personal capacity, introduced the first discussion. Covid-19 has exposed the inequality and exploitation that exists within capitalism.
It is not a surprise that black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) people are most affected by the pandemic. One third of black and Asian workers in London are key workers and have been working on the frontline during the pandemic. The vast majority of BAME people live in overcrowded housing, work long hours in low-paid jobs, and live in poverty.
Hugo also outlined the root cause of racism - class inequality under capitalism - and how it's used as a tool by the capitalists to divide the working class on racial lines, or to blame black and Asian people for the ongoing shortage of services. Racism is inherent in capitalism. To get rid of racism we need to end the capitalist system and fight for socialism.
We discussed institutionalised racism in workplaces. A Socialist Party member and social care worker explained the racial discrimination she faces daily and how in-work racism can be fought.
The Socialist Party has been organising discussions on the role of the working class in fighting racism, the lessons of the Black Panthers, the ending of the slave trade, and more. The meeting agreed to add to the material we have, and produce a new pamphlet on the socialist ideas needed to arm the anti-racist movement.
It is these socialist ideas, the understanding of the root cause of racism and the strength of the mass working-class movement that have the power to challenge capitalism and all the exploitation and oppression it represents.
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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.
The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.
The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.
- The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
- When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.
In The Socialist 5 August 2020:
NHS pay: 15% for all now
From first wave to second? Capitalism's Covid failures
Capitalism's 'vaccine war' shows need for socialist cooperation
Tories' obesity plans - blaming individuals not the profit system
What we think
Labour payouts: unions must discuss political representation
Wales: GE Aviation workers march to save jobs
PCS union: Reject longer DWP opening hours
'First you clap us then you slap us': hundreds march for NHS pay rise
Sick pay victory at Homerton hospital!
Unite union branch pledges to support socialist candidates who oppose cuts
Oppose BT site closures - national strike ballot needed
Workplace news in brief
No going back
What would socialist universities look like?
Cuba: Covid-19 and the 60-year-old embargo
Anniversary of nuclear destruction of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
80 years since the murder of Leon Trotsky rally
A-level results day 2020: Fight for our future!
Fighting to end racism and capitalism
North London: Socialist Party speaks at BLM protest
Young Socialist day of action
Doncaster: Vigil for murdered women
Engage for Change Hull - trade union youth festival goes online
Campaign stalls on jobs, pay, NHS and racism
Why I joined - Covid changed my outlook
Socialist Party meetings: Online and in-person
The Socialist summer schedule
The Socialist 5 August 2020 |
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