General G. Baker, Jr.
September 6, 1941 – May 18, 2014
“We have seen the few become the many. So don’t be dismayed that there aren’t a lot of people here right now. They’re coming. We just need a few to stand up and show the way.”
– General Baker, Benton Harbor, Michigan, 2006
General Baker. How do we describe such a man? Communist. World Revolutionary. Trade Union leader. Loving husband, father, and friend. He breathed Detroit. He was Detroit. Roots struck deep in this grandest of cities, Gen was a leader in the fight for the emancipation of the working class in the U.S. and throughout the world.
Comrades pass on. It is part of the inevitable cycle of life. It’s what they stood for, the lessons their lives teach us, that live on. It is in these times, and with these kinds of people, that we reflect, we measure our own lives against the one who is gone, and ask ourselves, who are we really?
The world is changing so fast we hardly recognize it some days. Yet Gen rejoiced in this change. “When something new happens,” he told a group of young activists in 2010, “it gives us the opportunity to think about new things.” It meant real change was possible.
The chairperson and a founding member of the League of Revolutionaries for a New America, Gen understood that without organization, our class has nothing. He understood – he knew first hand – that struggles break out, but without revolutionary leadership they become simply the plaything of the enemy. He understood that organization is impossible without unity. That unity of action is impossible without unity of understanding. He understood that as conditions change, we have to change, from the way we think about things, to the way we organize ourselves, to what we expect from the work we do.
Storm clouds are gathering on the horizon, comrades. The guns are booming in the distance. We will be tested in ways we do not yet know. We can honor Gen’s memory in no better way than to carry on the fight for what he know – what we know – to be the profoundest truth.
Humanity stands on the cusp of achieving the vision for which it has so long fought – a world in which we can become fully realized as human beings in the world, at one with our deepest strivings.
What revolutionaries do right now will, in no small part, determine the ultimate fate of this truth.
We dip our banner to our fallen.
We re-commit ourselves to this vision to which Gen dedicated his life – the fulfillment of world history and the liberation of humanity.
General Baker was a founder and chair of the League of Revolutionaries for a New America. To carry on his work please make your donations to Rally, Comrades! You can donate through the Rally, Comrades! web site (click on donations button and enter donation into pay pal). Or, send checks or money orders made out to LRNA to P.O. Box 477113, Chicago, IL 60647.
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The age-old vision of a world without scarcity, without exploitation, class domination, organized violence, and stultifying labor has been the dream of millenia. The new completely socialized labor-eliminating means of production ... sets the basis for its realization. Now human history can begin, the light of the individual shining in the full brightness of liberated life, that can only be realized within true equality and cooperation: communism, a cooperative society.'Without Vision, the People Perish'
Rally, Comrades ! May/June 2011