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View Diary: Is Race a Problem for the Left? (338 comments)

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  •  dealing with class will deal with race (5+ / 0-)

    "Race" exists to divide the working class.  Marx knew it and MLK knew it.  By framing fundamentally economic issues - jobs, mobility, [lack of] access to vital services, cheap labor, etc. - as white vs. black, black vs. brown, and so on IMO only distracts from the real problem and turns people who ought to be on the same side against each other.

    You end up with a fruitless debate over who's more oppressed, who should get their problems fixed first, who has to give something up to make it happen, and finally over the nature of the nation's original sin: racism or classism ... or sexism, homophobia, etc.?  That debate is easily manipulated by the right wing in order to make people afraid of each other: whites losing their privileges, Latinos "cutting in line" in front of blacks, Asians just plain taking over, etc.

    •  I agree (3+ / 0-)

      Race exists because of class. However, race has been established as a divider since the 1680's and it is impossible to dismiss THE greatest source of oppression in this country by simply saying it shouldn't be.

    •  I thought that way years ago, but I was wrong. (3+ / 0-)

      Class and race intertwine, but racism and eqaulity should not be secondary to class issues, im my view.  In any event, you never will have working class solidarity so long as white separates from worker of color.

      It is not a debate over who is more opprressed.  It is an anti-capitilist strategy based on objective conditions of the society rather than treating Marx as a prpphet and his writings as religion.  

      Join us on the Black Kos front porch to review news and views written from a black pov—everyone is welcome.

      by TomP on Wed Jul 03, 2013 at 08:41:35 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  No issue should be secondary (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        TomP, Catte Nappe, smkyle1

        to another. At least, I have no standing to say, 'your issue should be secondary to mine' or 'his issue should be secondary to hers.'

        If someone's issue is environment degradation, or police brutality, or marital rape, or electoral reform, or sizeism, or unhealthy school lunches, or the abuse of transfolk ... those issues will attract certain demographics. People do self-segregate (and society reinforces that behavior, often horribly). So it's wise and important to try to limit our self-centeredness, especially in the light of privilege and inequality. But some sort of monolithic unity across various 'causes' is a pipe dream. As the diarist says,


        Issues like fracking, immigration reform, reproductive rights, campaign financing, prison realignment, drones, domestic spying, a living wage and many others are currently being debated within the progressive community. But each of these issues draws support from a distinctly different racial demographic.

        ...How can we mount an effective overall progressive campaign with a movement that is so racially and ethnically fractured?

        I suppose the answer is, 'with many fits and starts, and much confusion and upset, but perhaps also with a slow and uneven, yet increasing, focus on issues where we overlap.' Which is why diaries like this one are so vital.

        "Gussie, a glutton for punishment, stared at himself in the mirror."

        by GussieFN on Wed Jul 03, 2013 at 10:13:47 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  That's all very well and good (2+ / 0-)

      But economics don't fix a Jim Crow criminal justice system, for instance.

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