Workers Vanguard No. 1057
28 November 2014
Same Old Story: Killer Cop Walks
Ferguson Righteous Fury
Cops, National Guard Out!
NOVEMBER 25—The whole world was watching and waiting for the grand jury decision on whether to indict Ferguson cop Darren Wilson for the coldblooded killing of unarmed black youth Michael Brown in broad daylight. The news, which is no news at all in a country where racist cop terror is the law of the land, is that Wilson got away with it. Protesters in Ferguson erupted in fury and frustration, while thousands demonstrated in cities across the U.S.
The capitalist politicians, from Missouri’s white law-and-order Democratic Party governor Jay Nixon to America’s first black president, decry the “violence.” But the truth is that the whole situation was set up to incite what they now denounce as a riot. More than a week ago, Nixon declared a state of emergency and mobilized the National Guard. While U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder piously lectured on the importance of protest to initiating a “national dialogue” between the cops and the communities they terrorize, his FBI sent out a nationwide APB warning against “extremists” out to attack “law enforcement and critical infrastructure.” Emboldened by the racist rulers, the lynch mob murderers of the KKK promised to use “lethal force” against “terrorists masquerading as ‘peaceful protesters’.”
All these are the real forces of violence in this society. As one Ferguson protester put it last night, “If you got a badge, you can get away with murder.” Accounts in the bourgeois media this morning were filled with lurid tales of “looters” running amok in the Missouri town. But as could be seen from the news images, it was the cops who were on the rampage, firing tear gas and “non-lethal” projectiles.
As of this morning, 61 people had been arrested, including some just trying to go about their business. Our team in Ferguson ran into a young black couple who had just been released from a nearby jail; they had been arrested for “trespassing” at an open gas station and their car was impounded. One of them told the cops: “I guess Darren Wilson is the only person not getting arrested tonight.” We demand: National Guard, cops and FBI out of Ferguson! Free the arrested protesters and drop all charges now!
Together with the iron fist of state repression comes the velvet glove of black Democratic Party politicians and preachers mobilized to douse the flames of protest by pushing illusions in federal investigations and appealing for the cops to be reformed to “serve the people.” This is like asking the plantation master to make his overseers treat the slaves with respect. In capitalist America, the job of the cops, courts and prosecutors is to maintain and defend a system rooted in the brutal exploitation of the many by the few—a system built on racial oppression from chattel slavery to wage slavery.
Just as it took the Civil War to smash the Southern slavocracy, it will take a third American Revolution to shatter the power of the capitalist ruling class and the state apparatus that defends it. There is only one force in this society with the social power to do that: the multiracial working class, whose labor produces the wealth that the capitalist rulers claim as theirs. All workers, including white workers, face the same enemy—a ruling class that condemns them to ever more vicious exploitation and wields the knife of racism to maintain its power. That the workers have not been mobilized in their own defense, much less in defense of the ghetto poor, is the responsibility of the trade-union misleaders who have shackled labor’s power to the defense of the interests of the capitalist class enemy.
The Spartacist League/U.S. is dedicated to the fight to forge a new leadership of the working class—a multiracial revolutionary workers party. The cause of black freedom will be a great driving force in the struggle for a socialist America and a great achievement of workers revolution. Only when those who labor rule will the wealth of this country be used for the benefit of those who produced it—not least the descendants of black slaves whose labor was a bedrock on which American capitalism was built. And only then will there be any real justice for the working class, black people and all the oppressed.