Portland May Day 2016: Class Struggle Contingent

May Day in Portland, 2016: the Class Struggle contingent brought together Carpenters, Ironworkers, Stagehands, Teachers, IWW “Wobblies” and other pro-working class elements under the day’s only banner that called for “Full Citizenship Rights for all Immigrants,” on this workers’ holiday that was revived in the U.S. by the mass protests of immigrant workers ten years ago.

The goal of the Class Struggle contingent was to fight for May Day as it should be: International Workers Day, a day for the class struggle against the capitalist system. Our contingent was the only participant in Portland’s May Day that sought to mobilize the unions and the militant workers. And while there were some radical-sounding words to be heard from the platform, one of the main sponsors of the event was the “Working Families Party,” a scam operation with which the union bureaucracy seeks to get workers’ votes for the Democratic Party of our class enemy. The Class Struggle contingent’s banner said “Break with the Democrats and Republicans! For a Class-Struggle Workers Party!” We distributed many copies of our article against Bernie Sanders from Bridge City Militant No. 1. We were the only group at May Day that had anything to say against the ruling party of bloody, racist U.S. imperialism.

A spokesperson for the Internationalist Group, part of the Class Struggle Contingent, was interviewed by KOIN 6 TV news and got right to the point: “We think that capitalism has long outlived its usefulness, and we think that we need a workers revolution in America.” That’s what May Day, and the class struggle, is for.

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Saturday May 9: Protest Racist Police Murder in Pasco, WA

CSWP is bringing a group of unionists from Portland to Pasco, Washington on Saturday May 9, to take part in a protest that will mark the third month since the murder of Mexican agricultural worker Antonio Zambrano Montes by the police there.

For more information, contact us at 971-282-7903 or cswp@csw-pdx.org.

Here is a page for the event on FaceBook.

May Day Greetings to ILWU Local 10

On May 1, 2015, Local 10 of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU) shut down the Port of Oakland, California and led a May Day march to “Stop Police Terror.” CSWP sent the following message of solidarity to Local 10.

Sisters and Brothers of ILWU Local 10:

Class Struggle Workers – Portland salutes your decision to shut down the Port of Oakland this May Day in protest against the deadly epidemic of racist police violence. Only the multiracial working class has the power to resist and defeat the terrorism that capitalist America wages daily against black people and immigrants. Today you are setting a great example for the rest of the labor movement by using union power in defense of the besieged black population from Ferguson to Baltimore.

In Portland, Oregon, three local unions have condemned the racist murder of Antonio Zambrano Montes, a Mexican agricultural worker, by the police in Pasco, Washington. Your action has inspired these Portland union locals (IATSE Local 28, IUPAT Local 10 and IWW Portland) to form a contingent in the May Day march under the banner “Labor Against Racist Police Murder.” Anti-police-brutality protesters from Pasco will address the rally.

Your courageous labor action, like the ILWU’s 2008 coastwise strike against the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and the 1999 work stoppage for Mumia Abu-Jamal, are shining examples that point to the only way out of what Malcolm X rightly called the “American nightmare” of endless war and barbaric racist oppression. Organized labor has the power, and must use it to strike against racist police terror, to fight for a society in which those who labor shall rule, where the nightmare of mass incarceration and police terror will be put in the past forever.

ILWU Local 10 marching against police terror on May Day 2015, Oakland, CA.
ILWU Local 10 marching against police terror on May Day 2015, Oakland, CA.

Portland May Day Against Racist Police Murder

On May Day in Portland Oregon, Class Struggle Workers – Portland initiated a union contingent behind the banner “Labor Against Racist Police Murder.” The IWW, Painters and Stagehands locals passed resolutions condemning the police murder of Antonio Zambrano Montes in Pasco, WA, and formed the contingent, which was joined by a delegation from Pasco, groups of Laborers and Teachers, and individuals from other unions.

Labor Against Racist Police Murder contingent, Portland May Day 2015
Labor Against Racist Police Murder contingent, Portland May Day 2015
Labor Against Racist Police Murder contingent, Portland May Day 2015
Labor Against Racist Police Murder contingent, Portland May Day 2015