Trump, white workers and the road to socialism
Written by Jesse Nevel, National Chair of Uhuru Solidarity Movement; member of APSC
U.S. President-elect Donald J. Trump was propelled to victory largely by the support of “non-college educated” white workers. This popular upsurge has been described as “the revenge of the white working class” by the Washington Post.
The Wall Street Journal marveled at the rise of a “Trumpen-proletariat” who were eager to follow behind the self-defined “blue collar billionaire” on his quest to restore America to greatness.
To understand this phenomenon and the way forward, let us begin by looking at the nature and origins of capitalism itself.
Capitalism was born parasitic
Omali Yeshitela, Chairman of the African People’s Socialist Party, has proved that capitalism as a world system was born parasitic. It was born as a parasite that sucks blood by its very nature. The parasite was Europe, and the blood was the blood of Africa and African people.
Capitalism was born from the assault on Africa, the enslavement of millions of African people and the European genocide against the Indigenous people of the Americas. The birth of this system brought tremendous resources to the entire white population.
Before the assault on Africa and theft of land from the Indigenous people, which Marx called “the primitive accumulation of capital,” there was no white working class.
Europe was under the system of feudalism, under which half the population died from Bubonic plague in four short years, and the majority of the people were serfs tied to the land owned by the nobility.
It was slavery and colonialism that rescued Europe from feudalism. The influx of wealth into Europe from slavery and colonialism birthed capitalism and all of the classes within the capitalist social structure, including the white industrial working class, incorrectly believed by Marx and his adherents to be the ones who would lead the struggle for socialism and revolution.
Elsewhere in his writings, Marx himself admitted that the wage slavery of the industrial worker “required as its pedestal slavery pure and simple in the New World.” In other words, all white people, white workers included, sit on the pedestal of the oppression of African people.
White working class born from colonial oppression of African people
Chairman Omali Yeshitela went beyond anything Marx ever put to paper when he made the profound insight that the white workers and white ruling class are “historical twins, containing the same DNA and spawned by a history that is repugnant in its entirety.” –“An Uneasy Equilibrium: The African revolution versus Parasitic Capitalism”
For this reason, white workers have always historically united with our ruling class against the African and colonized peoples of the world.
Racism, the ideological underpinning of colonialism, was developed to justify our historic allegiance and complicity with the white ruling class.
Even when white workers were being exploited and bled dry by our bosses, we did not turn around and lynch the bosses. We lynched African people. We climbed up on the backs of African people to gain greater access to the stolen resources on the pedestal.
Every dream and aspiration of the white worker has rested on this bloody and oppressive foundation. As bad as it may have been to be a poor white person, we were convinced that it was better than being African.
We did everything we had to do to prove our whiteness and our loyalty to our bourgeoisie, at the price of thousands of black bodies swinging from trees.
We lynched, we raped, we burned African human beings, not at furtive KKK gatherings in the dead of night, but in broad daylight with thousands of white men, women and children at festive public gatherings.
The class struggles in Europe and North America generally have been competitions between white workers and the white bourgeoisie for access to the stolen loot of African and colonized people, not a genuine struggle for socialism which can and will only come about when Africans and other colonized peoples destroy the pedestal on which capitalism rests. Our conflicts with the white ruling class proved to be ultimately non-antagonistic.
The pain and despair of the white worker
Stolen labor and resources have fed the white world for six centuries. The current anxiety of the white world is based upon the fact that we are living in the era when the set-up is being fundamentally challenged.
The oppressed peoples of the world—from Afghanistan to Ferguson, Missouri—are fighting back and taking control of their own resources and destinies.
This resistance is the cause of the “uneasy equilibrium” as the Chairman describes it, including the economic and social uncertainty faced by the white population.
The call to go back to the old days of supposed greatness of America is a call to bomb and shoot and torture the Africans, Arabs and Mexicans back into submission so that we can continue feeding off their toil and goods.
It is this historical phenomenon of crisis caused by resistance that gave birth to the upsurge of white people that mobilized behind both Trump and Bernie Sanders.
Many of the white students who rallied behind the Bernie Sanders campaign were similarly motivated by the uncertainty of a life on a faltering platform of stolen wealth.
The plea for the return of student loan debt is a variation of the call for a return to America’s greatness. For Bernie or Trump’s promises to be implemented would require a deepening of the colonial enslavement of the rest of the world, an acceleration of the looting.
The white left and the Democratic party sorely failed to recognize that the crisis and anxiety of white workers is real and must be addressed.
Trump’s promises of more jobs, deportation of “illegal immigrants” and negotiated trade agreements appealed to the narrow perceived interests of the white working class.
In the aftermath of the election the Democrats and the white Left are debating whether their failure to organize white workers left them politically available to be mobilized by Trump.
The answer is yes. The lesson the Democrats will derive from this conclusion is that they should now focus their strategy on organizing white workers. The African People’s Socialist Party says that it is not enough simply for white leftists to organize white workers in the pursuit of their own perceived interests.
The white working class has to make a serious self-criticism and must be held accountable for its historically proven loyalty to white nationalism and its own bourgeoisie.
For white workers to become agents of revolutionary change, the white working class must unite under the leadership of African workers and oppressed peoples and make a profound self-criticism for its role historically in carrying out the genocide of Africans, Mexicans, and Indigenous people.
Overcoming this hurdle is the precondition for the white working class to play a role with the rest of humanity in the struggle to overturn capitalism.
As Sundiata Acoli stated, “The more sweat in peace, the less blood in war.” White workers must begin sweating buckets in the struggle for principled solidarity with African liberation and reparations for six centuries of genocide and oppression.
White workers have to enter into the struggle for socialism based on the terms of the anti-colonial revolution, not the other way around.
The white worker’s pain, as Chairman Omali explains, is “born of the very nature of a social system built and sustained by the pain of slavery, colonialism and genocide committed against the majority population of the world.” – “One People One Party One Destiny: Political report to 5th Party Congress”
White workers and communists must fight for Black Power
If we expect to have a future on this planet, as white people, white workers, white women, white homosexuals, etc., then we cannot separate our future from the future of the rest of humanity.
We must end our six-hundred-year tradition of selling out the rest of the planet for our narrow short-term benefit, the highest form of opportunism.
We cannot expect a life at the expense of everybody else. They are not going to let it happen. Neither should we. The oppressed peoples are taking what is theirs. They are calling for our solidarity under their leadership and on their terms.
As the Chairman says, we are never going back to the horrible “good old days” of uncontested white domination.
Africans, Arabs, Mexicans, Indigenous and other oppressed people are going to feed their own children. They are going to use their resources to secure their future on this planet. It’s their oil. It’s their land. It’s their gold, coltan, diamonds, coffee, culture.
We must reject the myth that the source of our wealth for the past six hundred years has been “good fortune,” an outgrowth of the canard of white racial superiority that prevents us from seeing the world as it really is and bonds us to our filthy ruling class.
As Chairman Omali Yeshitela wrote of white workers in his book “One People One Party One Destiny,” “Their fate and their possibility of a real future will depend on their willingness to join us in destroying the failed god of a parasitic based white supremacy…The white population must become anti-colonialists as a matter of self-defense.”
White people must join the rest of humanity
It is only through solidarity that we can end our own exploitation, chaos, suicidal depression, drug abuse and other contradictions which we have historically attempted to solve at everybody else’s expense, a futile and ultimately self-destructive task.
The Chairman said it perfectly in his political report to the Party Third Congress in 1990:
“…White communists must be committed to the struggle for the victory of Black Power over white power. The beginning of the process for white communists in the U.S. and the world to abandon the interests of imperialism and to integrate their own interests with the interests of the toiling masses of the world is to subordinate their interests to the struggles of the oppressed peoples of the world to overthrow parasitic white power.
“In the U.S. this can only be done through joining the anti-colonial struggle for Black Power. Concretely this means joining the African People’s Solidarity Committee.”
The African People’s Solidarity Committee is the organization of white people formed by and working under the leadership of the African People’s Socialist Party, going back into the white communities to organize white solidarity with Black Power and raise reparations to the African Revolution. Our mass organization is the Uhuru Solidarity Movement.
Join APSC! Build the Uhuru Solidarity Movement!
White workers, unite under the leadership of the African working class!