Progressive Labor Party on Race & Racism



Progressive Labor Party (PLP) fights to destroy capitalism and the dictatorship of the capitalist class. We organize workers, soldiers and youth into a revolutionary movement for communism.

Only the dictatorship of the working class — communism — can provide a lasting solution to the disaster that is today’s world for billions of people. This cannot be done through electoral politics, but requires a revolutionary movement and a mass Red Army led by PLP.

Worldwide capitalism, in its relentless drive for profit, inevitably leads to war, fascism, poverty, disease, starvation and environmental destruction. The capitalist class, through its state power — governments, armies, police, schools and culture —  maintains a dictatorship over the world’s workers. The capitalist dictatorship supports, and is supported by, the anti-working-class ideologies of racism, sexism, nationalism, individualism and religion.

While the bosses and their mouthpieces claim “communism is dead,” capitalism is the real failure for billions worldwide. Capitalism returned to Russia and China because socialism retained many aspects of the profit system, like wages and privileges. Russia and China did not establish communism.

Communism means working collectively to build a worker-run society. We will abolish work for wages, money and profits. Everyone will share in society’s benefits and burdens. 

Communism means abolishing racism and the concept of “race.” Capitalism uses racism to super-exploit black, Latino, Asian and indigenous workers, and to divide the entire working class.

Communism means abolishing the special oppression of women — sexism — and divisive gender roles created by the class society.

Communism means abolishing nations and nationalism. One international working class, one world, one Party.

Communism means that the minds of millions of workers must become free from religion’s false promises, unscientific thinking and poisonous ideology. Communism will triumph when the masses of workers can use the science of dialectical materialism to understand, analyze and change the world to meet their needs and aspirations.

  Communism means the Party leads every aspect of society. For this to work, millions of workers — eventually everyone — must become communist organizers. Join Us!


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From Flint to NYC Fight Racist Lead Crisis in Schools

BROOKLYN, NY, April 5—Once again, racist education bosses at the Department of Education (DOE) are showing their disregard for and neglect of Black and Latin working class children. In February, it was found that the water at more than half of all New York City public schools had lead present—an element so toxic to humans that there is no “safe” amount of it (WNYC News, 3/30). In some NYC schools, the levels are higher than were in Flint, Michigan at the height of the lead crisis there.
This recent round of testing is not the first, but previous testing was done after water was flushed through the systems, effectively making the test results inaccurate. It’s hard to know how long youth and education workers have been exposed to this poison. The DOE’s response to this crisis has been unacceptable and racist.
How Do You Spell “Racist”? D-O-E
At one Brooklyn high school campus, elevated lead levels were found in several areas of the building and the sports fields. The DOE sent a dismissive letter home with students to convince parents not to be concerned.
In the wake of the outrageous Flint water crisis, and the discovery of lead throughout the Newark school system, the racist DOE bosses had the audacity to push that having lead in our water was not a big deal, and could be avoided by just drinking from particular areas of the school. The letter went on to inform parents that the problem would be dealt with by simply having the custodians flush the pipes for a period of time each Monday morning! The letter did not disclose the actual levels the water tested at, nor make parents aware of the devastating effects of lead poisoning on children’s brain development, or recommend lead testing for their children.
This is a racist attack on our students. In this school, students must pass through scanners every day to enter. Metal detectors are nearly exclusive to schools that are predominantly Black and Latin. Students are harassed and humiliated as they are subjected to repeated searches and removal of items from their bag and themselves before they can get to class. A ridiculous assortment of items are banned from the school building or are forcibly removed from students’ bodies, and this is enforceable because of the scanners: hot food, headbands, hairpins, combs,nail clippers, open beverages, and other liquids. When students try to enter with hot tea in a thermos it is taken away, when students buy a juice at the store and take a sip before getting to scanning it is taken away, when students bring in reusable water bottles they are forced to pour it out or it is taken away. So when students can’t drink the water in the school and can’t bring water in from home, what are they to do?
Fight for Clean Water: The Struggle Is On!
Teachers and students were outraged at the news of the lead levels and the dismissive letter from the DOE. A group of teachers called for an emergency meeting with the principal, where they pushed for several things: that there be an end to the ban on open bottles coming into the school, that the DOE provide water coolers in the school, and that the DOE provide free lead testing to our children. The principal responded that there was no need, because there was one water fountain that the DOE claimed was perfectly safe. We’ve heard that before! She was so callous as to complain about teachers and parents telling students not to drink the water, and that she had had to spend so much of her day convincing students that they should drink it.
Our next step was to reach out to as many parents as possible. Parents of students in our advisories were equally outraged and agreed that with all the history of lying about lead levels, this was too serious an issue to be complacent. Though we were referencing Flint, Michigan and Newark, New Jersey, nobody hesitated to see that the bosses there are the same as the bosses here. For now, the parents of the Parent-Teacher Association have stronger ties to the principal than with the teachers, and have bought her argument that because a few students may choose to bring alcohol in, the ban on open bottles should stay.
Though there was some discouragement amongst teachers and students when we heard that, the fight for clean and safe water will be taken on. Students and teachers are meeting this week to discuss what is happening in the school and to make plans. One important part of that will be recognizing that the disregard for the wellbeing of working class youth is part and parcel of this system, and that while we fight for the immediate needs of our students, the longer fight for a world built by and for the working class is the most important fight to win our students and school communities to.

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