Heatwave exacerbated by capitalism
Published Jul 28, 2005 2:37 AM
While it is proving to be a
blistering summer for U.S. imperialism, the exceedingly hot temperatures across
the country are also leading to many deaths, especially for the homeless, and
especially in the Southwest.
Farm workers in California and undocumented
workers trying to cross the border have died as well. The arduous journey across
the deserts of the Southwest is fatal for many migrants coming into the country
to seek work year-round. Add to that temperatures soaring into the triple digits
and it becomes that much more perilous.
Throughout the country there have
been numerous heat warnings as temperatures have gone into the 100s. Over 200
cities across the West have recorded record high temperatures. Las Vegas has
peaked at 117 degrees Fahrenheit. In Phoenix alone, 24 people have died because
of the heat wave; most of them have been homeless. In California, four farm
workers have died from heat-related injuries.
A global warming trend has
been well documented over at least the last 10 years. It means that many, and
especially the homeless and poor, swelter in the hot weather. Those who have air
conditioning may escape, but they suffer through high utility bills. That many
are left exposed to the elements any time of year can be attributed to
It is indeed a shame that in the richest and most
technologically advanced country in the history of the world, so many are
homeless and without relief from the blistering heat. What’s more, the
changing global climate is because of capitalist production. The capitalist
class seeks to increase profits and cares nothing of the environment it is
Whether the destruction comes from corporate dumping of toxics
into our water, air and land, or from imperialist war, the bottom line for the
ruling class is the bottom line: profits must go up and costs come down, and its
class must control the resources of the world.
In small socialist
Cuba—poor in resources as it is—no one is left homeless and no one
exposed. When nature ravages, as it will, Cuba mobilizes to move all from
harm’s way, and when homes are destroyed and lives lost, Cuban society
moves to rebuild and provide for all its citizens.
As the antiwar movement
begins to reattain the momentum of two years ago, before the war started, the
capitalist class must become more exposed for its brutality, because relief from
the elements—from war and destruction of the environment—will come
through the overthrow of capitalism.
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