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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Housing Segregation, A Pillar of Capitalist Control

Many in the U.S. believe Black and white workers live separately and attend separate schools because they want to live with “their own kind.” This belief couldn’t be further from the truth! Black, white, and immigrant workers in the U.S. live separately because of housing segregation, a history not taught in capitalist schools. Segregation means the deliberate racial separation the capitalist class enforces through their state—their government, laws, courts, schools, prisons, and racist police. The capitalist class relies on housing segregation to enable other types of segregation, which all promote racism and divisions within the working class.
Communists have a long history of leading antiracist struggles against segregation and for integration. Integration and multiracial unity build the international working-class unity we need to smash this racist, imperialist capitalist system with communist revolution!
The history of housing segregation—and the history of countless neighborhoods that workers in the U.S. live in today—dates back to the 1930s.
1930s: Red-Led Workers Fight Like Hell
During the depths of capitalism’s “Great Depression” of the 1930s, millions of U.S. workers were organized or directly influenced by the Communist Party. From California to New York to Alabama, from the cities to the fields, communism was a mass movement. Through organizing labor unions to defending the Scottsboro Boys to fighting the Ku Klux Klan and racist police terror, the Communist Party earned the respect of masses of Black, immigrant, and white workers.Communist-led rebellions and fightback terrified the U.S. capitalist class with revolution. Under liberal Democrat president Franklin Roosevelt and his “New Deal,” the bosses created social programs that provided some relief from the Depression’s devastation while preserving Jim Crow and the worst aspects of U.S. racism. In contrast with the multiracial unity of the Communist Party, the Federal Housing Authority mandated that newly established public housing “projects” across the U.S. were “whites-only.”
World War II and Korea’s Challenge
The U.S. entered World War II still in the midst of the Great Depression. To try to build U.S. nationalism for the war effort, the bosses desegregated parts of the Army. Black and white soldiers who fought Nazi fascism side-by-side returned battle-hardened, and many were committed anti-fascists who celebrated the communist-led Soviet Union’s leadership of the war.
Faced with segregation in housing back home in the U.S., they fought back. Black soldiers denied apartments in whites-only housing projects in New York demanded an end to the segregated public housing projects. At New York City’s largest public college campus, City College, Black and white returning veterans led a student strike against segregated dorms.
Soldiers who were drafted to the genocidal Korean War in 1950 bitterly opposed the U.S. One in three captured U.S. soldiers “actively supported” the communist-led Red Army of China and North Korea, causing the U.S. bosses to panic that “never before in history had so many captured Americans gone to the aid of the enemy” (NYT, 1/6/57).
Once again, an angry and united working class challenged the U.S. bosses’ racist and imperialist plans!
Bosses’ Response: “Suburbs”
The U.S. bosses’ response went further than it had in the 1930s: they adopted a plan to draw white workers into newly created “suburban” towns. Levittown, a “suburb” town outside of New York City, became the model for racist housing developments all around the country.“Bill Levitt [the developer of Levittown] only sold houses to white buyers, excluding African Americans…By 1953, the 70,000 people who lived in Levittown constituted the largest community in the United States with no black residents.Activist groups across the U.S. and even individuals within Levittown, who united under the Committee to End Discrimination in Levittown, protested the Levitts’ racist policies....but [the courts] ruled that federal agencies were not responsible for preventing housing discrimination (ushistoryscene.com).”Suburbs made it possible for U.S. bosses to legally abolish Jim Crow segregation in schools in 1954, while on the other hand intensifying housing segregation. And even though schools were legally desegregated, the new suburbs allowed the creation of “de facto” segregated majority-white schools.
Nationalism and Racism are Inseparable
The U.S. capitalist class responded politically to the antiracist fightback for integration by pushing nationalism and anticommunism. In the bosses’ attempts to rewrite history, they painted communists as the enemy while throwing crumbs to the working class.“
In 1957, William and Daisy Myers, a black couple with young children, bought a house in Levittown…with little help from the local police to keep the mobs of angry racists from congregating outside their home day and night.White residents of Levittown and other still segregated communities across the country [used] “Americanism” as justification for racial exclusivity, and painted those who sought to enforce integration as…communist. Suburbs across America were closely intertwined with the preservation of the capitalist American way in the face of growing Soviet international influence (ushistoryscene.com).”
Capitalists created racism—racist divisions never existed within the working class in the first place. Segregation in any form is racist. Today, the U.S. bosses’ rule depends on convincing the working class that segregation is somehow natural, and communism is somehow unnatural.At one high school in Brooklyn where students and teachers fight for school integration and multiracial unity, the bosses desperately hope they can scare workers away by branding antiracists as “communists.” The Progressive Labor Party embraces our class’ proud history of fighting for racial integration! The capitalist class can’t rule without racism, and racism can’t be maintained without some forms of segregation. Segregation is intertwined with this capitalist system, and when workers are united once again in a mass PLP, communist revolution will destroy it!

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