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What it means to be a revolutionary

Published Dec 10, 2011 9:00 PM

Caleb Maupin
WW photo: Caleb Maupin

Excerpts from a talk given by WWP youth organizer Caleb Maupin at the Workers World Party National Conference on Oct. 8-9 in New York City.

What we are seeing today are the wheels of a ruthless capitalist system continuing to grind away.

Marx spoke of how this system began. He sarcastically called it the “rosy dawn” of capitalism. It began with slave ships docking in Africa and the genocide of millions of Native people here in what became the United States. Next was a horrific period of racist Jim Crow terror in the South and sweatshops and child labor in the North.

How many wars have there been? Whenever people seek to resist their orders, the ruling class comes down horrifically with bombs and destruction. Now, the environment is being degraded and destroyed, as the planet heats up due to global warming.

Capitalism may be capable of destroying people’s lives, and maybe even destroying the earth, but it will not destroy itself. Some people are under the misconception that capitalism will somehow collapse under its own weight and just fall apart.

As communists, we know that capitalism’s ugly wheels will keep turning, as it seeks more and more profits. When we say, “We want to abolish capitalism,” we know that this has to be a conscious act. It will take a revolutionary party, mobilizing millions of people, to bring this system down. Capitalism will not destroy itself. Capitalism must be destroyed, and we have to destroy it.

Being a revolutionary in modern times means being part of a global movement. We are not the U.S. Workers Party. We are Workers World Party. We stand in solidarity with the Cubans who provide more medical aid around the world than any other country on this earth. We stand with the Venezuelans and the Bolivians as they fight to construct socialism. We stand with the people of Honduras in their fight against the U.S.-backed coup regime. We’re with the Egyptians in Tahrir Square. We stood with the Libyan people as they fought the NATO occupiers.

However, the center of this ruthless empire is not in Asia, Africa or Latin America. It is not too far from this hall in the Bronx. It’s on Wall Street.

On Wall Street there are thousands of youth condemning this system and fighting against its horrors. We stand with them.

Putting politics and the suffering that people living under this system endure aside for a moment, and just thinking logically, what kind of sense does it make to have such massive unemployment? So many youth, full of strength, energy, brilliance and creativity, are being cast aside as useless. This system says it has no use for millions and millions of people with so much to contribute.

The bosses may not have any use for millions of youth across the U.S., but we do. We have plenty of room for them in our revolutionary party. The millions of youth that have been cast off by this system will eventually forge the army for the coming revolution to overthrow this system.

We need to begin discussing and envisioning a socialist United States, which I have a feeling will be coming into being very soon. After taking power, we will utilize everyone to fight against the horrors that people face now, and we will build a good life for all. But the revolution will only be the beginning of struggle, as we march toward a classless, communist future.