Ten Days that May Have Changed the World

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A Socialist Project e-bulletin ... No. 2115 ... June 7, 2020
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Ten Days that May Have Changed the World:
An Internationalist Perspective in Six Parts

Richard Greeman

Sparked by the police murder of George Floyd and fueled by Minneapolis authorities’ reluctance to arrest and charge the murderer’s three police accomplices, mass protests have been sweeping across the US with an intensity not seen since the 1960s. In over 150 cities, African Americans and their allies have flooded the streets, braving the COVID-19 pandemic, braving police violence, challenging centuries of racial and class inequalities, demanding liberty and justice for all, day after day defying a corrupt, racist power structure based on violent repression.

1. Breaches in the System’s Defenses

Today, after ten consecutive days in the streets, this outpouring of popular indignation against systematic, historic injustice has opened a number of breaches in the defensive wall of the system. The legal authorities in the state of Minnesota, where George Floyd was murdered, have been forced to arrest and indict as accomplices the three other policemen who aided and abetted the killer, against whom the charges... were raised from third to second degree murder. A split has opened at the summit of power, where the Secretary of Defense and numerous Pentagon officials have broken with their Commander in Chief, Donald Trump, who has attempted to mobilize the US Army against the protestors.

This historic uprising is an outpouring of accumulated black anger over decades of unpunished police murders of unarmed African-Americans. It articulates the accumulated grief of families and communities, the sheer outrage over impunity for killer cops in both the North and the South. It reflects anger at capitalist America’s betrayal of Martin Luther King’s "dream" of non-violent revolution and horror at the return to the era of public lynchings cheered on by the President of the United States. It impatiently demands that America at long last live up to its proclaimed democratic ideals, here and now. In the words of one African-American protester, William Achukwu, 28, of San Francisco: "Our Declaration of Independence says life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Right now we are only dealing with the life part here. This is a first step. But liberty is what a lot of people are marching for."

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