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by Justin Gilmore, Ryan Wirt
Wednesday, Nov. 02, 2005 at 5:46 AM
In contemporary America, disunification, or splintering, has rendered the left ineffective. Such has long served as the eulogy of leftist movements and ideas within the states. The problem has worsened in recent years, and has thus led to a lifeless decay in the strength of all real progressive actions. Clearly, this has given way to today’s breed of libertarian rightists, neo-conservatism, and many other crypto-fascist uprisings. Disintegration, lack of solidarity, and a true misunderstanding of who/what the real enemy is, has led to the recent polarization of our movements.
Today’s Dysfunctional Left:
To begin, one must clarify what it means to be on the left. Simply put, a group of persons who subscribes to authoritarianism or a form of discrimination against sexual preference, ethnicity, age, gender, class, religion, etc. cannot be considered part of the left. With such in mind, it is equally ignorant to discriminate against another who associates with a different leftist group, ideology, etc. providing that such ground does not discriminate against all the same: sexual preference, ethnicity, age, gender, class, religion, etc.
Much of the animosity between groups can be tracked back to past provocation via state agencies. COINTELPRO, a disinformation program developed by J. Edgar Hoover’s FBI, was responsible for effectively destroying movements from the inside out. This included (though was not limited to) the Black Panther Party, and past communist, socialist and anarchist movements. It would be simplistic to think that the legal boundaries put in place to guard against a repetition of these actions. The PATRIOT Act aimed to dismantle those protections, and was passed without even a full reading by all but one member of Congress. It would be naïve to believe that history will not repeat itself, that Homeland Security and associated agencies will not do the same again. Indeed, many instances have occurred already, such as the policeman who infiltrated the completely harmless group Peace Fresno. We must keep alert, and not allow government sponsored infiltration to rupture us once more.
For some time, anarchists, socialists, communists, libertarian-socialists, anarcho-communists, syndicates and other radical leftists have worked against each other while trying to achieve similar goals. Much of this might largely be attributed to recently acts of government provocation. This trend effectively renders the revolutionary left’s actions futile. Furthermore, this recipe for failure must be resolved through unity and solidarity.
Unity: Why Its Important:
The importance of solidarity amongst the ranks of the revolutionary left could metaphorically be considered the key to success. Peering into history, it can be understood that solidarity has played a substantial role in revolutionary aspects. A prime example of this is the beginning of the Paris Commune, which took place in March 26, 1871. Within the commune, it was apparent that pacts had been created between diverse revolutionary groups, including: libertarians, socialists, and even anarchists. Indeed, it is obvious that the Paris Commune ended in tragedy, but the reason for its failure was not related to the solidarity it expressed within. So, what was it that the communards understood that we do not? Simply put, the peoples involved with the Paris revolution ultimately understood that, despite its diverse population, there was but one goal in mind, along with many different methods at which it would be achieved. The dulling of animosity between different revolutionaries within the commune, along with a clear understanding for who the real enemy was, helped propel Paris into the correct direction: Revolution. In contemporary Los Angeles, or really any other large city, the same applies. To achieve success, we must always remember to show strength through numbers. Without a level of solidarity unifying the revolutionary left, success will elude us.
Prosperity Through Unity:
Once unity and solidarity is achieved within the revolutionary left, it will become conceivable to work toward the goals that we have all dreamt of. Real power in the hands of the people. Economic and environmental justice. Economic equality. The destruction of elite authority. The destruction of state oppression. The dulling of racism, sexism, ageism, classism, and discrimination against sexual preference. And, finally, some real change from within the heart of the Empire.
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