by El Chaco
The immigrant proletariat is fast becoming one of the most organically active layers of the proletariat.
This is of course for a reason. We will quickly go into the 2 reasons why the proletariat is getting squeezed by the State and the Bourgeoisie. Then, we will go into the task of revolutionary communist in regards to this struggle.
It is of course obvious that the illegal immigrant proletariat has been attacked for a while now. Through legislation and consequently domestic police terrorism. This of course is nothing new. But the intensity is! To, with but a blink of an eye, eliminate Ethnic studies, the Capitalist click has certainly attacked not only the immigrant, but its offspring as well.
In the context of crisis, the Capitalist and the State want to rid it self of the excess labor-power that is fast becoming useless in profit making. Think housing in Arizona and how before the 2007 crisis housing was a great market to be in and many homes were being built.
“… that consequence is an excess of homes. He says that the explosion of single-family homes built in the Greater Phoenix area in 2004 and 2005 exceeded actual demand by about 20,000 homes. He estimates that there are currently about 6,000 homes under construction that are not spoken for by buyers, and about 18,000 more homes for sale than normal.”1
Well who build those surplus houses by far? Immigrants. Illegal immigrants at that. It’s Cheaper that way.
The second, reason is an old worry the Ruling class has always had of a minority they oppress. The worry is that of revolutionary potential and upheaval. The revolutionary potential of the illegal immigrant is of course obvious to the ruling class. We need only look at 2006 and the potential that could’ve had. During May 1st 2006, the LA ports were shutdown, and 86% of the meat industry was shutdown. The social power of such shutdowns, threatened the state, and led to a wave of physical ICE raids in 2007-2009. Once these physical raids made ICE look bad, they switched to “Silent Raids” through checking social security numbers.
More recently, we can look at the Steel Workers in Berkeley. 600 workers went on strike in March 2011 against a terrible contract that offered 10-cent annual raids. ICE caught wind that there were many undocumented workers playing the role as militants during the strike. As a result, ICE starts checking social security numbers, firing 22 workers a week for those who don’t have matching social security numbers. The total amount; 200 undocumented proletarians were fired. The Capitalist directly called the State to discipline the proletariat. Discipline them from what? From collectively attacking the minority capitalist that does nothing but get rich off the majority that toils. The workers in this instance stand as a great example of workers in general beginning a struggle from a rank and file level, but this example, according to the Bosses, must not be generalized. According to the Capitalist, the different layers of the proletariat cannot catch wind that one of the most oppressed layers of itself, their immigrant brothers and sisters, are organizing and fighting back. This example may unite the Proletariat and inspire it! If not this one, then perhaps an accumulation of similar instances, similar situations of coordination! Thus the Capitalist solution is to remove the active proletariat, and more importantly, remove the potentially radical proletariat. This is based on who is on the bottom, the most oppressed layers (immigrant, womyn, black) may be the first to strike, and to do so ferociously i.e. the recent rolling strikes by garbage workers starting in Alabama, the American Licorice Workers striking, the truckers up North in Washington who are mostly African immigrants struggling, the wildcats in Alabama by immigrants in response to copy-cat law from Arizona against undocumented folk, and the above mentioned immigrants in a Union City Steel Factory, etc.
Thus we see the attacks from la migra against Latino brothers and sisters. We see Latino/a workers being rounded up in 6 days in the largest ICE raid ever all over the US!2