A Radical Change Is Coming—Will It Be Reactionary Or Revolutionary?

Permalink: https://revcom.us/en/tens-thousands-march-abortion-rights

October 4, 2021

Tens of thousands of furious people poured into the streets in hundreds of cities across the country on Saturday, October 2nd to stand up against the most extreme attack on abortion rights in 50 years. Texas currently bans abortion after 6 weeks into pregnancy and the Supreme Court will hear a case in December that could end abortion protections nationwide.

From the many stages and from the crowds, the word abortion was said out loud and proudly. Some shared stories of botched back alley abortions from before it was legal. Hundreds carried wire coat-hangers with labels affixed that read, “This is not a surgical instrument.”1 Teenagers from Texas testified publicly about the humiliation of having to go before a judge to get permission in order to access an abortion without parental consent, even before the recent restrictive ban. Linking the fascist assault on vaccines to the assault on women’s abortion rights, a popular t-shirt and sign read, “Texas: Where viruses have reproductive rights and women don’t.” Anger simmered at the hatred and disregard for women that is concentrated in the state forcing women to have children against their will.

Thousands marched October 2, 2021 for abortion rights in downtown Houston. Photo: The Texas Tribune

At the same time, it must be said bluntly that the numbers at these marches fell far short of measuring up to the full scope and magnitude of the threat we currently face. Worse, the main direction given from the stages will only accelerate the catastrophe we face. The take-home messages was, as summarized well in one tweet, “Protests are nice, but voting is better.”

For weeks going into these marches, the national leadership of the Women’s March did everything they could to suppress the truth of the extreme character of the danger, even going so far as to ban coat-hangers and Handmaid costumes from the protests.  All this is exactly wrong—and deadly. Only by confronting the full danger of what we face, which absolutely includes the threat of outright fascist theocracy and everything this means to humanity, do we stand a chance at arousing the level of determination for the uncompromising mass resistance needed—a fight outside of the channels of the capitalist system that has no answers and needs the oppression of women.

As analyzed deeply in the recent episode of The RNL—Revolution, Nothing Less!—Show (Ep 72), the tipping point we are currently facing with regards to women’s right to abortion is part of a very developed fascist program with very deep roots which is now entrenched in every branch of government. It is part of a larger crisis and deep divisions in society that, as analyzed in A Declaration, A Call to Get Organized Now For A Real Revolution, can now

only be resolved through radical means, of one kind or another—either radically reactionary, murderously oppressive and destructive means or radically emancipating revolutionary means.

Only a real revolution that overthrows the system of capitalism-imperialism that rules over us can bring about a resolution to this current crisis that is not a horror show, but one that is in the interests of humanity. There is something tremendously positive that can be wrenched from the jaws of a system that is the source of so much suffering.

In several cities, the Revcoms cut through the watered-down politics-as-usual direction being given at these marches with powerful contingents that brought the message: BREAK THE CHAINS! Unleash the Fury Of Women As A Mighty Force For Revolution! And this is the spirit that radiated from them in their chants and organizing all day. They projected the liberating leadership of Bob Avakian and spread some of his key works. They injected the uncompromising truth that “Forced Motherhood Is Female Enslavement” and “Patriarchy and Capitalism: You Can’t End One Without Ending the Other – Revolution, Nothing Less.” And they called on people to wage a society-wide fight to defeat this fascist assault on women as part of, and while getting organized for, the revolution that is needed.

This message polarized the crowd in a very good way. Those who are wed to this system and its monstrous “politics of the possible,” did not want to hear it and didn’t like the way the challenge was taking them out of the complacency of their comfort zones. But for many many others, who sense deeply that something much more radical is needed, the Revcoms presence and message was extremely attractive. Many took up the revolutionary chants and some joined in rolling discussions of the RevComs’ Declaration and Call to Get Organized Now For a Real Revolution. The Revcoms were bringing people real hope, in contrast to the fatalism too many are feeling – because the truth is that this system has no future for humanity, but a whole different world is possible. This is extremely important and needs to be be built upon, and involve far more people, going forward.

All this underscores the importance of everyone who came out to these marches – and all those who didn’t, but who care about women and the future – digging into and getting more clarity on the roots of this attack, how patriarchy and capitalism are deeply woven together, why only a revolution can put an end to both and bring about a future that is really worth living in and fighting for, and what the character of that future is. It matters that we all take this fight forward, arousing and mobilizing the sustained anger of even greater numbers of people to defeat this fascist assault on women through relentless struggle outside the killing confines and terms of the system that rules over us. It matters, even more fundamentally, that growing numbers of people be organized into and take up this fight as part of ripening and preparing to win the revolution that can finally break all the chains on women and emancipate all of humanity.

To this end, we urge readers to dig into these key resources, and more that are included in the boxes on this page:

The Revolution We Need, The Leadership We Have

A revolution aimed at emancipating all of humanity—including emancipating the half of humanity that is female from the chains of both capitalism-imperialism and patriarchy—IS possible. There is leadership for it in Bob Avakian (BA), who has forged the new communism. And BA is providing ongoing leadership for getting organized for this revolution now, in this extremely crucial and momentous time. As The Declaration And Call To Get Organized For An Actual Revolution states, “We cannot afford not to follow this leadership if we ever want to get free and put an end to this madness.” Check out Bob Avakian here, here and here

Here are some further sights and sounds of the day of mass protests to be built upon and taken forward.

Chanting with the Revcoms in Los Angeles. “I choose revolution!”
Chicago, October 2, 2021    Photo: buzzfeed.com
New York City    Photo: New York Daily News
Minnehaha, South Dakota    Photo: Argus Leader
In front of the Supreme Court Building, Washington, DC    Photo: AP

BREAK THE CHAINS! Unleash the Fury of Women As A Mighty Force For Revolution

The following supplementary articles can be found at the revcom.us site

Break ALL the Chains! Bob Avakian on the Emancipation of Women and the Communist Revolution

The Constitution for the New Socialist Republic in North America straight up puts the right to abortion and liberation of women in the Constitution
Letter from a reader

Abortion on Demand Without Apology
What Is an Abortion and Why Women Must Have the Right to Choose
Life Cannot and Should Not Always Be Preserved

Forced Motherhood is Female Enslavement

Bob Avakian, “A world of rape and sexual assault” (video clip)

“The Bible and Baby-Killing: The Right to Abortion and the Whole Direction of Society”

Christian Fascist Theocrats, Get Your Laws And Vigilantes Off Our Bodies:

“The ‘Unholy Alliance’ Between Trump and Fundamentalist Christian Fascists” (video clip)

A New Year,
The Urgent Need For A Radically New World—For The Emancipation Of All Humanity
(See especially the section on the profound changes in the situation and social position of large numbers of women in this country and internationally.)

The Right to Abortion: The New York Times Rationale for Surrender and Why There Can Be No Compromise—and No Going Back by Toni RedTree

For All Those Telling Us to Dig In For a Decades-Long, Gradual Struggle to Preserve a Woman’s Fundamental Right to Control Her Own Body

Questions—And Answers by Toni RedTree

In the Face of the Greatest Assault on Abortion in Nearly 50 Years: Focusing Mainly on “Self-Managed Abortion” Is a Recipe for Catastrophe by Sunsara Taylor

1. Wire coat-hangers were commonly used by women to induce their own abortions before the Supreme Court decision Roe v. Wade legalized abortion in 1973. This was unsafe and thousands of women died in this way. [back]