Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Poverty has a gender & a nationality

Those who fulminate contemptuously against “identity politics” (it’s usually white men who call themselves internationalists) need to explain why the gender of poverty is female & the nationalities are brown & black, if identity is not an issue. They might add an explanation for why the lesser evil Obama administration is targeting the elderly & disabled (by orchestrating massive attacks on Medicare & Social Security) if identity is divisive.

The fulminators need to wake up & smell the artillery being directed at women, seniors, disabled, & at Black women & children especially. We’re on the battle field fighting for our lives while in the rearguard the chorus is denouncing us for being divisive. Divide & conquer only operates if differences between human beings can be exploited & played by stupidities like racism & misogyny & privilege. As attacks rain down on the vulnerable & unorganized, the chorus of bozos crescendoes, denouncing identity politics as reactionary. With the steady beat of a drum they shout, ‘Blacks should not organize as Blacks against the onslaught their communities face, women should not organize as women because that is divisive.’ So will the rearguard chorus step into the breach & join us in the battle? Fat chance!

As lesser evil Obama slashes the Free School Lunch & Breakfast Program & cuts family food stamp programs, as millions of children prowl the streets looking for food in the summer months, who will step into the breach to defend them? As millions of elderly with no pensions live solely on puny Social Security (SS) checks & with Medicare coverage already slashed to the bone, who will step into the breach to defend them? Who will defend those with disability whose puny little SS checks don’t even cover rent, let alone rent & food. Will the chorus come forward? Or will they just continue to stand in the rear denouncing us for defending ourselves?

The truth is we are being targeted because our political organizations are weak, if they exist at all. The truth is no one is defending us & we are standing on the battle field unarmed. The advocacy groups that do exist substitute lobbying/begging for charity & largesse rather than engage in political struggle. Most groups have been long since mortgaged to the Democratic Party (DP). The way it works is that the DP gets political leaders to compromise, buys them off with foundation grants & other blandishments. The money buys silence & collusion--& injustice prevails.

This indictment includes women’s & civil rights groups, disability rights groups, immigration rights groups, & most significantly the unions. A coalition of these mighty forces could reverse the onslaught against working people--but first they have to pull their heads out of Obama’s ass. They have to stop groveling & start fighting again. The rearguard chorus needs to study US history. The only times history has moved forward instead of backwards is when Blacks, women, immigrants, working people took the initiative guided by the principle that “an injury to one is an injury to all!”

(Photographer not identified)

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