Socialist Workers Party statement

Support strikes, protests against police brutality! Fight for jobs!

July 20, 2020

Alyson Kennedy, Socialist Workers Party candidate for president, issued the following statement July 8. Malcolm Jarrett is the party’s candidate for vice president.

Striking shipyard workers in Bath, Maine; nurses walking the picket line for jobs and sick pay in Joliet, Illinois; and protesters across the country demanding the cops who killed Breonna Taylor, Elijah McClain and many others be prosecuted, are fighting to advance the interests of all working people.

In these struggles, workers are setting an example of the power our class has to push back the attacks of the bosses, their government and their criminal “justice” system. Join their fights, and bring support!

Malcolm Jarrett and I have had the pleasure to join these fighters, walking the picket line in Bath, marching against police brutality and being part of dozens of other strikes and working-class protests across the country. We’re using our campaign to tell the truth about these struggles and to build solidarity.

These battles and on-the-job actions workers organize week in and week out in steel mills, auto plants, on the railroad, at Walmart megastores and in other workplaces are the essential starting point for building a fighting working-class movement.

It’s through these fights workers gain confidence in our own capacities and see ourselves as a part of a class with common interests — that can be defended in struggle against the employers and the Democratic and Republican politicians who uphold their system of exploitation and oppression.

The SWP presents a fighting program for working people to wage effective struggles against the bosses’ rapacious drive for profit at our expense:

Workers and our unions need to fight for a government-funded public works program to put millions to work at union-scale wages, to build decent houses, much needed hospitals and many other things the exploiting class doesn’t consider “essential.”

Wherever the bosses say they’re going to lay workers off, we should organize to fight for a shorter workweek with no cut in pay to protect all our jobs.

Keeping workers at work deals blows to the bosses’ efforts to pit employed and unemployed workers against each other and keep us all from taking on the real source of our problems — the capitalist system. It lays the basis for rebuilding fighting unions to use to defend the interests of all working people.

Amnesty for all immigrants in the U.S. without papers. They are fellow workers who face the same crisis confronting all working people — and more, given their precarious condition. Employers use the threat of deportation hanging over millions to superexploit undocumented workers and drive down the wages and conditions of all workers.

Workers need to fight to wrest control of production from the bosses. Only when workers control production can it be organized so it is safe both for those on the job and consumers who want to use what we produce. Workers control is the road to producing what working people need, not what maximizes profits.

As workers exercise increasing control over all aspects of production we learn the most important thing about ourselves — our capacities to transform our conditions and ourselves, and our ability to organize the entire economy in the interest of the toilers.

To make that possible, workers need to build our own party, a labor party, to mobilize workers and farmers in their millions to take political power out of the hands of the capitalists and establish a workers and farmers government.

Join SWP candidates participating in strike picket lines, protests against cop brutality and other fights by working people as they campaign in cities, small towns and rural areas. Use the Militant to help spread the work and build solidarity with today’s working-class struggles where you live and work. Fight for what you really want, not some wretched “lesser-evil” capitalist politician. This is a life worth living!