Revolution #275, July 22, 2012
The BAsics Bus Tour—
Rolling in New York City…
Reverberating Across the Country
The BAsics Bus Tour is rolling again! This time, the crew of volunteers—women and men of different nationalities and life experiences from all over the country—are going right into the global financial heart of the capitalist-imperialist beast, New York City, and surrounding areas.
Already, before the kick-off of the tour, people have been out in the neighborhoods to find housing and food for the volunteers, and build expectation, support and participation from the people in those areas. One person wrote, “We have already begun to see in these neighborhoods ... what it means that they have some of the highest concentrations of housing projects in New York City, block after block after block after block, until you feel the reality of people being warehoused. Kids play in the midst of garbage that covers the sidewalk like this system’s alternative to flowers... Youth tell us they are stopped multiple times a day by the police, ‘every five hours’ one teenager says, precisely like it’s part of a nightmarish routine. One older resident described seeing a young guy hunted down like an animal, chased through an empty lot with four-foot tall grass, then stomped on by police when they caught him. Empty lots, empty buildings, people living on top of each other and under constant threat of violence from police, and from how people are compelled by the dynamics of this system to do fucked up things to each other.”
There’s a glaring contrast in this city between the gleaming towers of the multi-billion dollar banks and corporations—and neighborhoods not far away like Brownsville in Brooklyn, where 90 percent of the people are Black or Latino, only 30 percent are high school graduates, and only 8 percent have completed college. The official unemployment rate in Brownsville (and nearby East New York) is 19 percent, more than twice the current national rate, and the median family income is less than half the national figure. Brownsville is ground zero for NYPD’s apartheid-like stop-and-frisk policy that harasses and terrorizes youth—cops make 93 stops for every 100 residents. This is also where, last November, 100 people rallied and marched to STOP “Stop & Frisk,” and 28 were arrested in a civil disobedience action outside the police precinct.
These are the city streets that the BAsics Bus Tour is rolling through. It’s a hot summer in New York City, and the tour is setting out to raise the political temperature higher. To those who are cast off, demeaned, and brutalized under this system, the tour is bringing the vision and works of Bob Avakian, the leader who has developed a way out of all the madness and horror that people face, here and around the world. Think about the people in places like Brownsville getting connected with the leadership of BA, as many copies of BAsics get out and clips from his talk Revolution: Why It’s Necessary, Why It’s Possible, What It’s All About are shown on screens set up in the streets or in people’s homes. Think about people learning about this leader who has brought forward the scientific theory and strategic orientation for how to actually make the kind of revolution that is needed to get rid of this system and bring about a radically different—and much better—world and who is leading the Revolutionary Communist Party as an advanced force of this revolution.
People’s sights will be raised about what kind of change is needed and possible—and what role they can play in bringing about that revolutionary change. Think about organized cores of people beginning to act together in these areas—getting deeper into BA, increasingly taking up the slogan “Fight the Power, and Transform the People, for Revolution,” looking to Revolution newspaper as the “collective organizer,” and bringing others into the movement for revolution on many different levels.
And all this will be a catalyst for the nationwide mass campaign the bus tour is part of—BA Everywhere... Imagine the Difference It Could Make!—the mass fundraising campaign to raise big money to get BA’s vision and works into every corner of society. People in different cities around the country will follow the bus tour in near real-time, reading the stories and watching the videos of the interactions between the volunteers and the people, and joining in this effort by donating funds, sending in support statements, as well as in many other ways... and getting organized themselves into the movement for revolution. Think of the effect on the people in the ghettos, barrios, and poor suburbs nationally as they see people like themselves raise their heads from the day-to-day grind and dare to imagine and begin to fight for a whole new world... the effect on artists, teachers, professionals, and other progressive people in the middle class as they see revolutionary stirrings among those at the bottom of society... and the effect of these things back on the people the tour is meeting, as they see the role they’re playing in this movement that is coming together across the country.
The monstrous system of capitalism-imperialism continuing to exist—causing vast death and suffering among the people and damaging the planet’s ecology, possibly in irreversible ways—is intolerable. A radically different world is possible, through revolution. But the big problem is that way too few people know about the leadership of Bob Avakian, the revolutionary vision and strategy that he’s brought forward, and the movement for revolution that is being built toward the goal of a whole new world. The BAsics Bus Tour is a key part of changing this on a grand scale—right now.
There are many people who will immediately connect with and love what BA has to say... AND people who will disagree with a lot of it, or feel they don’t know enough yet to decide one way or the other, but who find themselves drawn in by different elements of what BA is about. There is a place and role for all these people to be part of this tour in all kinds of ways. That means everyone who can and should be part of the movement for revolution as described in the RCP’s statement “On the Strategy for Revolution”: “...those who have hungered for, who have dreamed of, a whole different world, without the madness and torment of what this system brings every day... those who have dared to hope that such a world could be possible...and even those who, up to now, would like to see this, but have accepted that this could never happen...”
When the doors are opened, many more people can take part in all kinds of meaningful ways—in ways that each person feels they are able to do, but which also provide pathways for them to stay connected, learn more, and become part of the growing movement for revolution.
When you contribute funds to or take part in the BAsics Bus Tour in different ways, you are acting together with many others around the country like yourself who just can’t accept that great social injustices go on daily and are even swept under the rug; who are outraged at the lies and justifications of the rulers about their crimes; and who are inspired and intrigued by Bob Avakian and think that he and what he’s brought forward should be “part of the discourse” broadly in society. And for those who are getting more into this, you are joining the thousands today who can be brought forward, oriented, and organized in a revolutionary way while beginning to influence millions even before there is a revolutionary situation—the thousands who, in a future revolutionary situation, can be (in the words of the RCP statement on strategy) “a backbone and pivotal force in winning millions to revolution and organizing them in the struggle to carry the revolution through.”
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