May Day: The Cause of the Workers is the Hope of the World
In 1891, revolutionaries from various countries voted to celebrate May 1st as International Workers’ Day. The date honored the May 1, 1886, Chicago march and general strike for an 8-hour workday, which was attacked with police brutality and murder. Revolutionaries saw this battle as part of the struggle of the worldwide working class. Today, May 1st is officially recognized as a day to honor workers by a majority of the world’s countries.
But to undermine it, in 1894, the U.S. government established Labor Day on the first Monday of September. Still, International Workers’ Day is alive and well in our country. Revolutionary organizations and trade unions never let it die, and various movements have been launched on May 1st, such as the huge 2006 “Day Without Immigrants” marches and Occupy Wall Street in 2012.
This May 1st, the coronavirus pandemic starkly reveals how a lack of housing, healthcare, and clean water can become a death sentence for masses of people. Rally, Comrades! contains articles from such fronts of struggle, with the common message that despite all the fightback our circumstances will continue to get worse, unless we change the system that is condemning us to death.
Even before COVID-19, the ruling class was refusing to house or provide care for people they no longer needed as electronic production eliminated jobs worldwide. However, while technology saves them from paying wages, it also undermines the economic basis of capitalism itself. The result will be an unprecedented crash of that system.
The working class, both unemployed and those barely holding on to their jobs, must unite around the idea that they can only provide for their needs by freeing productive technology from private control and directing it toward the well-being of humanity and the planet. We commemorate International Workers’ Day 2020 by spreading this revolutionary understanding far and wide. RC
May/June 2020. vol.30. Ed3
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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