A Change in the Sky

Report from cultural action and political intervention at City Hall on February 1st 2019

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The liberal group ATX Resistance Action was due to host a protest they called “No Benefit for Rapists” on Thursday, January 31. The protest was meant to respond to the recent decision by the city to continue to pay the former APD commander Jason Dusterhoft after multiple allegations of sexual assault and drug use.The details of the Dusterhoft case can be located in our previous post Titled: The Ultimate Class Enemy.

A lot of discussion happens among the left on exactly how to deal with sexual abusers. PWM-MFP opted to pass on loitering outside of City Hall or following the usual routine of liberal chants and self-gratifying speeches by people who wince at the sight of conflict. Instead, we aimed to break the mold by displaying what the correct handling of this type of abuser should be whenever possible—ideological and physical struggle.

Street theater is both a form of protest and propaganda. It requires, organization, discipline and planning. For these reasons, PWM – MFP chose to do a performance demonstrating what our people’s justice for women against pigs like Dusterhoft would look like.

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Our supporters inside notified us that ATX Resistance Action’s protest was, in fact, not going to be a protest at all. ATX Resistance folded when when Mayor Adler asked them not to speak “out of respect” for an NGO called “Survivor Justice Project.” This is an obviously ridiculous notion and a huge act of cowardice on the part of ATX Resistance Action. The NGO Survivor Justice Project could be seen taking photos inside of City Hall with an officer in uniform in blatant disregard of the fact that the protest was supposed to be in opposition to the police. NGOs are the buffer between the people and the bourgeoisie, in essence, they operate as the ruling class’ PR campaigns. They function as representatives and enforcers of ruling class laws and ideology, while feigning sympathy for the workers and oppressed. It is almost unthinkable that any organization that has assembled people to protest a gross instance of injustice could be so easily persuaded to do nothing by none other than an NGO in the friendly graces of APD and the mayor.

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Upon hearing the news of ATX Resistance’s plan to not protest, we decided to go forward with our own protest. We marched up to the City Hall Plaza in step chanting “Without a People’s Army, women have nothing.” With us, we brought a person in a police uniform with a pig’s head mask. He was boxed in on all sides by PWM-MFP militants. Once we reached the City Hall, the pig was thrown to the ground and took a theatrical beating by our group. In the final act, the pig was stabbed. He cried out in pain and when our group circled back up, he was left in a puddle of blood. We chanted “Abusive Pigs deserve to die! Women hold up half the sky!” as a few of our members and supporters handed out booklets exposing some sexist and abusive men who are active in Austin. One of the men in our zine was none other than Kit O’Connell, an opportunist who was involved in organizing the protest that never happened.

One of the goals of Popular Women’s Movement–Movimiento Feminino Popular is to turn the tide away from reactionary feminism and towards a working class women’s movement. To accomplish this goal, we must rid the left of abusers, macktivists, and the ideologies that give these sexual opportunists a façade of legitimacy. In our booklet titled “Misogyny on the Left: Abusers and Macktivists in Austin” which can be found HERE on our blog, which can be found on our blog, we detailed Kit’s pattern of political opportunism and sexualizing his activism, specifically in regard to women. In response, Kit claimed that our article was homophobic which we find to be a very strange statement as we are attacking his sexual pursuit of women on the left.

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What we criticize is a common tendency of both straight and bisexual men to target women for manipulation. This criticism has nothing to do with same-sex relationships. Kit also accused PWM-MFP of being a “front group” for the concluded project that was Red Guards Austin. Not only do we find his paranoia disturbing, it also exposes a contradiction in his own long-standing line against Red Guards. Kit and his liberal cohorts have called Red Guards Austin a group of all white men. This has been one of their main “criticisms” against the group. They have also accused the former organization of being a fringe group of lunatics with no support. This means that Kit believes one of two things: either Red Guards Austin did have women and he was only engaging in unprincipled gossip and knowingly spreading lies and rumors against of the former organization OR PWM-MFP is a group of women that are completely acting on behalf of a group of men, not in our own interest, because we are so inept that we cannot think for ourselves and must rely on men to tell us what to do. This latter being an extremely sexist line, which isn’t be all that surprising given his political track record. So, either Kit is a liar or a sexist, but in the end we believe he is both.

We responded to Kit’s half-baked twitter response with a clarification on what the booklet was actually about. And in an act of desperation, he reported our post. It has been speculated and, to some degree, substantiated by many Facebook users that the algorithm used to the review and take down posts deemed as ‘bullying’ on Facebook have been extremely biased and reactionary. Posts reported containing the words “men are..” are far quicker to come down than posts that include “women are…”—if those get taken down at all. Facebook has notoriously allowed the continued posts of fascists and civic nationalists types while speedily removing posts from leftist organizations. This is the type of sexist and backward censorship that Kit has weaponized against us in order to hide his misdeeds. We find him to be utterly pathetic and morally bankrupt.

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We received some positive responses from some of the people outside of City Hall. We know that working women can be a courageous torrent of revolutionary energy and that our message has a place in the hearts and minds of many women who seek vindication and are ready to do away with reactionary men and their treatment of women. We aren’t in the least bit deterred by Kit’s attempts to misrepresent us. We understand that as we continue to expose men on the left like Kit O’Connell we will come under a fury of attacks by men who are attempting to cover up their behavior. We are happy to be the impetus for such change and controversy. Like a mighty rain storm, in our path of destruction we water the seeds for new life and wash away the dying plants of liberalism, post-modernism, and radical feminism.

Abusive Pigs Deserve to Die, Women Hold Up Half the Sky!

PWM – MFP

Misogny on the left

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Popular Women’s MovementMovimiento Femenino Popular (PWM-MFP) presents our newest project to better acquaint activist and working women with a few local sexist and abusive men. This is an ongoing project which will be updated regularly. We warn our friends, the activist and working women of Austin, about our the enemies within leftist political activism so our friends can be forearmed against these manipulative and predatory men.

Organized expressions of the Austin “left,” that is to say the legal-left, have accomplished so very little because they neglect to take stock of enemies and friends. Men are protected by organizational structures and friend groups when they are accused of abusive behaviors, when in reality they are enemies of the people. Likewise we have seen friends of the struggle treated like enemies by the very same people. Brave women who have come forward have been dismissed, discredited, bad-mouthed, and even silenced by well-connected men and their supporters.

PWM-MFP does not consider men generally, and particularly working class men, to be our enemies. We consider the sexism in our society to be an enemy, this is produced in our relationship to production, private property, and how it is reproduced culturally. Even when it has become clear that a person has transgressed against women, very little is ever done about it beyond minor formality. Abusive men persistently organize and a plethora of excuses are made for them to continue unscathed. This is the default standard of the revisionist and liberal legal-left.

The exception to this has been the emergent Marxist-Leninist-Maoist movement, which has time and time again showed a high level of commitment to the working women of Austin. This example has resulted in a high number of women taking up the ideology, guidance, and leadership from Maoists. We are inspired by and unified in these experiences. From the campaigns to oust abusers led by the former Red Guards Austin, to the struggle against abuser Richard Morrisset led by the former Revolutionary Student Front, these are the struggles which inspired and forged us.

They taught us an important lesson—everything that is reactionary is the same; it will not fall if you do not hit it. This holds true for the reactionary behavior of men (for the most part) who have too long gone unpunished.

Millions of women, survivors, and their supporters spoke up for the whole world to hear in the #MeToo movement. Sadly this movement had limitations. While a lot of awareness was raised, very little changed in terms of retaliation for abuse and prevention of abuse. The effects were limited to professional careers and entertainment. We all watched as high judges like Kavanaugh remained protected. #MeToo hardly had any reverberation at all in the activist movement and activist women went on being taken advantage of.

It is one thing to shut down streets and mess up traffic; this is a good expression of outrage, but it shouldn’t be the only outlet, there must be more. By forming our organization we hope to accomplish more and organize women in the interest of combating sexism and abuse in all its formations—this necessarily means clearing the trash in the leftist activist movement and smashing the headquarters of misogyny, including traitorous women collaborators.

By listing abusers and other sexists, we not only raise awareness, we make it known that action will be taken, and business as usual is now foreclosed.

We cannot rely on the sexist system. Capitalism is based on extracting profits, which means selfishness and sacrificing others for economic gain—it cannot contend with what is best for working women. Workers generally have no representation in this system. Rape, assault and abuse cannot be voted away. Women must grasp the necessity of self-defense. Self-defense is posturing unless it accepts and maintains an offensive component—women have to go on the attack.

The oppression of women did not fall from the sky. Women were not always oppressed. The oppression of women stems from and is reproduced by class society, specifically the emergence of private property and the need for inheritance to be passed down. What follows this is that the oppression of women can be once and for all ended with the end of class society. This means we cannot collaborate or work with the police whose main function is to protect private property with enforcing the class system. The same goes for the entire state and all its many apparatuses.

Capitalism produces ideology and determines the type of ideas which make up capitalist society. While the oppression of women far out-dates capitalism, the latter requires new forms of women’s oppression to keep itself going. Among these, we find not only patriarchal ideas as a vestige, we find new ideas which are perfectly suited to become weapons in the arsenal against women.

Chief among these currently is postmodernism, an ideology in which all power is considered diffused. The contradiction between a working man and working women is seen as the same as that between a capitalist man and a working woman. All problems are understood as interpersonal and intersectional problems. This takes the pressure off the system in a big way and keeps everyone treating enemies like friends and friends like enemies and so on.

Certain ideological outgrowths of postmodernism come in the form of identity politics, a certain type of opportunism which places identity above all else, including a person’s politics and political practice. This is used by abusers and sexists to play up their own identities to avoid accountability. Many male activists will use postmodernism to seem “woke” or progressive as a way to get women activists to let their guards down. The whole rancid ideology seeks to remove women from the struggle by dividing them into sub-groups which are constantly vying for their own agendas. We must be clear that working women all have a material basis to unite against class society and trends like postmodernism that oppose revolution.

Our purpose must be to unify working women under revolutionary leadership. Women are doubly exploited, first as workers in production, and then as unpaid homemakers. Add to this the endless degradation, sexualization, and constant threat of attack and sexual assault. We have the most to gain from accomplishing revolution and nothing to lose but bondage. If you are sick of abusers getting a pass and seeing women who muster the courage to come forward being denounced, ridiculed, or ignored, then you should get organized with us. We are taking the gloves off and refusing to tolerate further humiliation. Women become activists to change the world, yet face the same hardship, lack of leadership, and abuse that we face at the hands of capitalist society. No more!

Unleash the fury of women as a mighty force for revolution!

Continue reading “Misogny on the left”

The Ultimate Class Enemy

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Regarding the case of violent, sexist cop Dusterhoft

Jason Duane Dusterhoft is the quintessential abusive, misogynist, coke-snorting cop. He started working for APD back in 1995 and eventually became head pig of the southeast Region 4 district. From the beginning, Dusterhoft was a walking embodiment of arrogance and corruption, characteristics that guarantee a promising career as a pig.

In 1996, Dusterhoft lost his job for a short time after he was caught covering for other APD officers who were shoving their pockets full of money they stole from the door at Austin Music Hall. Since he was rehired by APD in 1996, he has been seen on multiple occasions purchasing and ingesting cocaine and abusing women at the Yellow Rose strip club. In addition, he was reported for using his position in the department to keep friends from obtaining traffic tickets, fudging overtime sheets, and allowing inappropriate use of sick days, which are all acts of theft of taxpayer money.

On August 24, 2018, Dusterhoft’s ex-girlfriend made an official complaint to APD after he choked and slapped her at the Yellow Rose strip club. The investigation found that he assaulted her multiple times, including strangling her “with the intent and desire of her losing consciousness.” She said he left bruises and other marks on her body, as well as pulled out clumps of hair from her head. She also said he “could not achieve sexual gratification unless he was inflicting pain on her.” Even though the investigation results are alarmingly damning, Dusterhoft denies his crimes and uses the alibi that it was “consensual choking.” Originally, he claimed he was drinking during these incidents while she was completely sober. Later he said she was “depressed,” and an “alcoholic on probation,” attempting to discredit her, while incriminating himself by admitting she was under the influence during strangulations. To seal his guiltiness, Dusterhoft hid his phone from investigators to keep videos of him strangling and slapping his ex-girlfriend secret. APD then “indefinitely suspended” Dusterhoft.

According to an article by the American Journal of Public Health:

Consciousness is lost in 10 to 15 seconds, and death can occur within 3 to 5 minutes. Being strangled is extremely painful, and not being able to breathe is frightening even in controlled laboratory experiments. In addition to the psychological implications of such intimidation, a uniquely wide range of neurological and physical outcomes are associated with strangulation. Nonfatal intentional strangulation causes immediate symptoms (e.g., loss of consciousness, which recedes quickly; loss of sphincter control; a raspy voice, which sometimes becomes chronic), symptoms that appear a few hours later (e.g., petechiae on the face and eyes), symptoms that appear a few days afterward (e.g., ear bleeding; bruises, the immediate lack of which decreases acknowledgment of the injury event by police and others), and sometimes mental and physical health problems (e.g., stroke) that are manifested months later. In addition, strangulation with a loss of consciousness can result in mild brain injury. Multiple strangulations are reported among one third to as many as three fourths of women in domestic violence emergency shelters.

The National Hotline for Domestic Abuse, along with other similar organizations, state that choking of an intimate partner is a warning sign that the domestic partnership could become fatal. There is the obvious risk of physically choking the person until they are dead, but choking of a partner, especially when coupled with other physical violence, demonstrates a pathology of control, maliciousness, and a disregard for another person’s feelings, or even their life. This pathology is well-suited to someone who works as a goon for the state, as it is a microcosm of how the state views the masses—with callous contempt.

Despite the horrific implications of Dusterhoft’s actions, there is a rumor that APD is talking about rehiring him on paper so he can receive “benefits.” We know that Dusterhoft has been seen at the Yellow Rose with other APD officers doing drugs and being parasitic degenerates. We would not be surprised if the city is willing to keep him on payroll in order to conceal their own illegal and abusive behavior. Cop culture, of course, is one of extreme reaction, or backwardness. We believe that their refusal to carry out the most rudimentary criminal prosecution is, at least in part, due to the state’s total disregard for women who are employed at strip clubs like the Yellow Rose.

While PWM-MFP takes a revolutionary stance against the sex industry, we do not fault the women forced into it either by physical violence or economic coercion. We condemn the trade for perpetuating the commodification of women’s bodies and its alienation of women from socially productive labor, damning them to be in service of some of the worst elements of this society. These institutions foster a culture of violence and exploitation of women, a culture that Dusterhoft clearly participates in. These bastions of gendered exploitation are notorious for harboring and catering to disturbed megalomaniac pigs like Dusterhoft.

Dusterhoft is a reprehensible misogynist. It literally brings him joy to see women in pain. In one text to his ex-girlfriend, he writes “Let me choke you out all the way. I love seeing you come back two seconds later and waking up to fucking me.”

Dusterhoft has ties to many shady characters in Austin. It’s no surprise that a man like this can be tied to other enemies of the working class in Austin, particularly on the East/Southeast side where he was most recently in power. Dusterhoft is employed by the tech company Oracle as a consulting member of technical staff. Oracle itself is a major proponent of gentrification in Southeast Austin. The masses are engaged in ongoing militant anti-gentrification struggles, including fighting the displacement that Oracle has forced onto the community. The most intense of these struggles are against attempts to create a Domain-type shopping center of wealthy luxury stores and condos in the Riverside Pleasant Valley area. Dusterhoft is not only a violent misogynist, he is also an example of the way real estate developers, tech companies and the police all collude against the working class and poor of Austin. They get richer and richer while we get shoved violently out of our own hoods.

Dusterhoft also secured the legal representation of Jason Nassuer, the brother of Jimmy Nassuer, a notorious slum lord. Jimmy Nassuer owned Cactus Rose Mobile Home Park before selling it to real estate developer Oden Hughes, who then robbed and evicted the tenants on the basis of the horrid living conditions inflicted upon them by Nassuer. A construction site is now in its place, slotted for more luxury apartments in the southeast district. The Nassuer family was also instrumental in the total gentrification of the East 5th Street area, which is now a trendy district of bars, where it once housed black and Chicano working class families.

For a long time, the Austin Police Department has tried to present itself as a friendly and tolerant department. It spends a significant chunk of its budget on public relations campaigns. These spin jobs must be understood as a form of low-intensity warfare against the working class community of Austin, and of course, this includes women. Women everywhere in Austin experience the automatic, rational fear when being pulled over that the traffic cop may be another Dusterhoft. Feel-good human interest stories about the police only serve to hide the ugly truth and diffuse the people’s anger against the police. The ruling class-owned media institutions are fully complicit in this counterinsurgency measure.

And so, we end up with pigs like Dusterhoft posing with pit bulls in the animal shelter and doing “coffee with a cop” programs in southeast Austin’s Region 4. APD with its unions and PR advisers had no problem using Dusterhoft as a poster-boy for “sensitive” policing, all the while he and his ilk were out abusing and exploiting women physically, emotionally, and sexually. The media will tell their readers, reluctantly, that pigs like Dusterhoft are just a few “bad apples.” In reality, the whole barrel is rotten. The “bad apples” are just the ones who are so blatant in their crimes, their cohorts can no longer cover for them.

Capitalist law enforcement is inherently anti-people because it defends private property and the propertied class over the interests of the working class. This anti-people line of work breeds a culture of sociopathic behavior. According to the National Center for Women & Policing,

Two studies have found that at least 40% of police officer families experience domestic violence, in contrast to 10% of families in the general population… Domestic violence is always a terrible crime, but victims of a police officer are particularly vulnerable because the officer who is abusing them:

  • has a gun
  • knows the location of battered women’s shelters, and
  • knows how to manipulate the system to avoid penalty and/or shift blame to the victim.

Victims often fear calling the police, because they know the case will be handled by officers who are colleagues and/or friends of their abuser. Victims of police family violence typically fear that the responding officers will side with their abuser and fail to properly investigate or document the crime.

In this national scope of police violence, Dusterhoft is no anomaly; he is its personification. He is arrogant, hateful, without compassion, and blames his victim. He displays a god complex by playing out his anti-women abuse and rape fantasies in reality. Of the countless women who have suffered and even died at the hands of abusive cops like Dusterhoft, we only know of the few who have survived and been brave enough to come forward. Considering the courage it takes to go up against high-ranking and well-protected cops, all logic indicates that there are more who do not come forward.

APD has long had a casual attitude towards rape and abuse, from the two cops, Lyttle and Castillo, who were recorded joking about rape, to the more recent revelation the department has been “clearing” rape cases that were, in fact, unsolved. It is common knowledge among the women of Austin that reporting rape and abuse to the police will probably just result in being dismissed or further traumatized. We can only imagine how the cops might treat women who accuse one of the department’s own of rape and abuse.

APD then faces a contradiction. On one hand it seeks to protect all of its reactionary goons, while on the other hand it seeks to preserve its tidy image as a wholesome department, in the interest of disarming and thus further abusing the masses. Due to the utter recklessness of Dusterhoft, the department was forced to prioritize sanitizing their image and so they have removed him from the streets. Otherwise, in all probability, he would still be in charge of Region 4.

Dusterhoft, in many of his crimes summarized here, did not act alone. It stands to reason that during this time he accumulated a fair amount of dirt on his partners in crime, information which he could and would certainly use to protect himself and secure his benefits. APD can then simultaneously try and avoid scrutiny publicly while covering their asses by keeping Dusterhoft appeased. One hand washes the other, even if both hands find themselves around the neck of women.

It is up to the women of Austin to fully and relentlessly combat the police department. Dusterhoft is not the cause of police crimes; he is a symptom of police reality. We call on the women of Austin to be done with activism that works inside this sexist, abusive system and to join our organization in fighting it. This fight requires doing away with capitalism and the police forces that serve it, it means class struggle and continuing to struggle against all backward culture in the interests of equality. Capitalism can never secure the equality of women, let alone defend our scant but hard-earned gains. Only socialist revolution and the establishment of a worker-controlled state can preserve the gains women make when we mobilize as a mighty torrent. Our organization exists for this purpose. We must organize ourselves and mobilize all of our class sisters for the purpose of not only breaking out of our cage, but freeing our whole class from the shackles of abuse, exploitation and servitude.

Combat and destroy the sexist police!
Unleash women as a mighty torrent for revolution!
Get involved and get organized with the Popular Women’s Movement–Movimiento Femenino Popular!

Lift high the red banner of the women’s struggle!

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Yesterday PWM- MFP attended the annual Women’s March which actually turned out to be a misnomer because the organizers were too afraid to march without a permit and escort. We have no delusions about the ineffectiveness of events like this. A march or rally should be a moralizing show of force, but due to the reactionary politics of these types of liberal feminists, events such as this one often have the opposite effect.

PWM – MFP seeks to break the hegemonic hold that liberal, bourgeois feminism has over activism and do away with it’s rotten ideology for good. Women deserve to have a movement that will fight for them. We aim to redirect the energy of the fed up and angry masses of working class women into a movement that is willing and capable to be a liberating force. This is why we attended the women’s rally. We engaged with women who are sick of the same toothless NGOs and bought-up activist peddling their defeatist nonsense from their podiums.

It is no surprise that our presence bares a stark difference from the going trend of feminism. No pussy hats, no watered down chants. Our signs displayed revolutionary slogans, and we do not shy away from our politics. It is for this reason that proto-fascist goons such as Infowars and their fan boys showed up to harass us. They crowded around attempting to entice us into a shouting match so as to break our discipline. But their efforts were futile. At one point, one of these pathetic hecklers asked a woman apart of the march “Do you support these communists?” referring to us, and she defiantly said “Yes!” We can only assume that won’t make it in the final edit of their reactionary, fear-mongering video.

Unlike the women who put together such marches, we aren’t interested in gaining electoral seats, running our own business, becoming NGO sell-outs, or being awarded tenure at a college. We have one focus, and that is to fight for our class and to carve out a place for ourselves in the revolution. We understand our only hope for true liberation lay within the defeat of the ruling class. Our concessions awarded to us through the second-wave feminist strategy of electoral politicking are being stripped away from us one by one, proving once again the uselessness of bargaining with the enemy. We firmly believe that you can only negotiate what has been confirmed on the battlefield.

Each action, is an opportunity to steel ourselves in the struggle. We remain resolved to our politics and every demo and encounter we have, we learn what the masses of women need and what they are willing to do to get it. What we need is revolution and we are ready to fight tooth and nail for it.

Lift high the red banner of the women’s struggle!

Popular Women’s Movement – Movimiento Femenino Popular

Founding Statement

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 “No one should be surprised that not all women unite in a single feminist movement. Feminism necessarily has different colors, different trends. One can distinguish three main trends in feminism, three substantive colors: bourgeois feminism, petit-bourgeois feminism, and proletarian feminism. Each of these feminisms made their demands in a different way. Bourgeois women are in feminist solidarity with the interest of the conservative class. The proletarian woman consubstantiates her feminism with a faith in the revolutionary masses to create a future society.”- José Carlos Mariátegui

A popular movement for women is absolutely essential for the liberation of the working class and the building of a new and equal society. Smashing the old world cannot be done when women’s oppression and subjugation are still intact.

The working class faces a multitude of indignities, oppression, and hardships in the interest of the ruling class extracting a profit from our labor. Working class women face added indignities, oppression, and hardships, as we are commonly seen as the inferior sex, the object of men’s desire, and a tool of reproduction in the household. Socially and economically, misogyny still reigns supreme as the default. Over the history of women’s struggle for equality and dignity, the ruling class has taken our struggle, distorted it, and sold our own oppression back to us. The struggle for minor reforms or even the embracing of misogynist tendencies in our society has had far too loud of a voice and the struggle for true liberation and power has been silenced and tossed aside. PWM-MFP is a movement for the liberation of women that works within the broader revolutionary movement for establishing the power of the working class. Our goal is clear: Revolution! We seek to not only be supports of revolution but leaders within it. We will have our full potential realized as fighters for our class.

The Women’s Situation in the U.S.

Not all women are of the same class and therefore not all women face the same obstacles or oppression. This is a distinction that has historically been white-washed by mainstream feminists.

First wave feminism in the US was most overtly characterized as the struggle for bourgeois and petty bourgeois women’s rights to vote. The age of western enlightenment brought many new ideas into focus on the question of liberty and equality and a new class began to rise up in power, beating back the old rulers of feudalism. Religious dogma and rigid adherence to the harsh feudal socio-economic system were being challenged as a new mode of production began to rise, capitalism. With this new system came new rhetoric of equality and democracy among men. But these new declarations could not be taken at face value, for this equality was only to be reaped by the new rulers of society, the propertied bourgeois class.

The wives, daughters, and other women previously under the tutelage of these men embraced these new ideas fully. Their only grievance was they had not received inclusion in this subjective equality; thus began the rise of first wave feminism and the women’s suffrage movement. While it was headed by bourgeois women, the new social set of working women found themselves swept up in the movement for women’s suffrage. But of course, women’s right to vote was not a win for working-class women at all. They still were paid much less than their male counterparts, and who they voted for would not change the harsh conditions and discrimination they faced in the workforce or in the home – where they were expected to work for free.

The privatization of reproductive labor in the home, in fact, only truly benefits the ruling class — for working-class men do not have a long-term interest in maintaining this. This dynamic ensures that the working man, seen as the more valuable worker by the boss, can spend all of his energy toiling in his bosses’ interest. In this relationship between the working man and his domestic partner, the man does not possess any more tangible power than he would as a single man; he is still a wage slave and one who is expected to be the primary breadwinner in a workplace that exploits him greatly. Lacking a revolutionary party he cannot fight his enemy in any meaningful way, thus some men become abusive as a result of their indulgence in the bourgeois ideology that tells the man that his domestic partner is his property. Feeling responsible for the woman and having an illusion of total power over her, he makes her out to be his enemy. While this is an awful situation for any woman to endure, it is also corrosive on the man for it does nothing to solve their material problems. Therefore the only solution for working men and women is the revolutionary party in which they can fight together for their vindication and do away with the oppressor class. Fighting the vestiges of bourgeois ideology that have devalued the existence and labor of women must be done in this fight as well.

Second Wave Feminism was marred with a lot of the same bourgeois sentiments as its predecessor. While this new movement did focus some of its energy in beginning to address some of the inequalities in the workplace, it did so primarily in the legal arena. Emphasis was put towards focusing on issues of “sexual liberation” (an idea that originated with the Nazi and child molesting sympathizer Alfred Kinsey), reproductive rights, and domestic violence. This movement, of course, coincided with the rise of the “New Left” which influenced second wave feminism greatly. The “New Left” was encompassed by many different types of politics but with a heavy emphasis on condemning the Vietnam War and supporting the emerging militant Black Liberation struggle. At the same time, a rampant countercultural phenomenon was sweeping the youth of the country, the Hippie Movement.

Much to the disadvantage of the “New Left” and its bedfellow Second Wave Feminism, hippie culture was embraced as a part of this new wave of radicalism, exposing some of the issues of the foundation of these movements. Hippie culture was just that, a culture, not a “social revolution”. It was one of self-indulgence and middle-class exploration. These politics seeped into the tenants of feminism as they cross-pollinated in places like feminist bookstores and women-owned businesses. An overemphasis was put on sexual experimentation and promoting safe sex with the distribution of pamphlets on birth control, venereal diseases, and safe abortions; while at the same time these (mostly white middle class) women ignored the plight of the working class oppressed nations women (black and brown women) who were fighting an epidemic of forced sterilization which left 1/3 of Puerto Rico’s childbearing-aged women unable to have children.

So while the going trend of feminism was to unite women on the premise of simply being women, working class and oppressed nations women found themselves more suited for national liberation movements and common labor movements, as their primary oppression was not that solely of being a woman, it was their class that determined the extent of misogyny and hardship they faced. Black women joined groups like the Black Panthers and the Black Liberation Army and fought for their place in that struggle because they knew they would not see equality as a woman if they could not first have liberation as a Black person. These flaws in this second wave of feminism exposed an obvious shortcoming of this type of bourgeois feminism. It could not speak for working women and any wins in the legal arena were marginal compared to the needs and demands of the vast majority of women; it mostly remained a cultural phenomenon on college campuses and among middle-class young women.

Third-wave feminism, the feminism of the 90’s, persisted in being heavily swept up and defined by the going counterculture. This brand of feminism prided itself on challenging gender norms and viewing their sexuality as a source of power. This type of “grrl power” feminism, needless to say, was not that which spoke to the broad sections of women in the United States. This third-wave brought into focus one of the most corrosive schools of thought to the left, Postmodernism. Postmodernism seeks to shift the focus of oppression to every minor grievance of the petty bourgeois as opposed to the point where all oppression originates; class society. The analysis of the society we live in and how to fight it is hyper-individualized and personalized with the postmodernist. This is the trend of “feminism” we are left with today. Instead of seeking to unite, the postmodernist blames the individual and attacks micro-aggressions instead of the system of oppression we find ourselves under: capitalism. Furthermore, the working women’s struggle is put further off course due to the postmodernist’s insistence to lump every other oppressed or marginalized group into what should be a distinct struggle for women through the virtues of “intersectionality”; a kind of “oppression stacking” contest where you tally up how many oppressions you face and this determines how valid your opinions, politics, or voices are in the struggle. This type of degenerative thinking has left feminism to mean everything but the fight for women’s liberation from class society. With this sort of logic simply being a working-class woman who seeks revolutionary change is not enough. You must be at the pinnacle of oppressed people. Suspiciously, class is hardly ever mentioned, for the postmodernist is the petit-bourgeois foot soldier and does not seek to liberate the working class. In fact, this type of feminism is excellent for the reproduction of capitalism today.

Today in the imperialist superpower that is America, the inclusion of tokenized identities is something that has brought great profit to the ruling class. They have figured out how to constantly reinvent themselves as a wholesome ruler by using black faces to oppress and exploit black people, queer people to oppress and exploit queer people, and women, such as Hilary Clinton, to oppress and exploit women. Where the postmodernist third-wave feminist seeks a critique and solution in society, she creates another avenue of attack against women and all those she claims to care about. This last type of “feminism” in fact has been so destructive that it has young women of today completely rejecting the term feminism altogether. They see feminism as a divisive tool of self-aggrandizing conjecture and if we cede any more ground to the postmodernist trend of “feminism” that’s all it will be.

The American Phenomena of feminism has historically been an anti-Communist one even with the participation of self-proclaimed Communists. Each trend borrows from the strength and popularity of the Communist movements while rejecting the politics that make these movements successful, and simultaneously ignoring the gains of Communists. Nowhere in the mainstream feminist traditions of the US can you find women talking about the success of the Chinese Revolution where women, who were once binding their feet to the point of permanently disabling themselves, engaging in prostitution out of necessity, being forced into arranged marriages and being sold to landlords by their husbands, were under the Communist Party becoming widely literate, finding gainful employment in all facets of production, being fighters in the People’s Liberation Army, and having the burden of solitary reproduction lifted off their shoulders so things like childcare and domestic labor became more socialized. These women did not win liberation through lobbying the then ruler and American ally, Chaing Kai-shek, for their rights. They won by joining the fight against imperialism and capitalism and carrying forward the red flag of Communism. These women were ignored in the dominant feminist narrative of the west.

There were and still are, of course, vultures on the left who seek to capitalize the most off the backs of Communist women – while carrying on the tradition of selling out their revolutions; these are the revisionists. The revisionist may claim to be a Communist or a socialist, in reality, she is anything but. For far too long she has done dirty deals with the ruling class behind the backs of working women.

Everything from endorsing bourgeois politicians, to attempting to co-opt militant street struggles and drag them into the courthouse, where we fundamentally lack power. Angela Davis is a great example of modern-day revisionist women. Having been a member of the long-turned revisionist CP-USA we have seen her politics turn her into nothing more than a talking head of the petit-bourgeois, an intellectual circulating on the campus arena collecting checks for teaching students how to be as much of a pathetic relic as she has become. It’s curious how history has blurred the lines and made Ms. Davis out to more than she ever was. She is most notably remembered as someone who associated with the Black Panther Party, in which she represented the trend of the folding into electoral politics at a time when the Panthers were most gaining steam in the streets and popular neighborhoods. Having been apart of the CP-USA for so long, her corrupt politics continually degenerated; she has rejected pretense of Marxism full on and embraced postmodernist identity politics and outward revisionism. These types of revisionists and their respective parties will always try to find a way to wiggle into women’s struggles, for they see it as an easy place to spread their treacherous ideology and practice.

Here in Austin, we have seen the Party for Socialism and Liberation (PSL) harbor a proven violent rapist and strangler, McKinley Forbes. PSL covered up all links of Forbe’s membership nationally, and locally they went straight to claiming that the charges against her were untrue despite substantial evidence.

Towards the era of the New Militant Woman

“The class struggle, made historical fact and not theoretical assertion, is reflected in feminist terms. Women, like men, are reactionary, centrist, or revolutionary. Thus they cannot fight the same battle together. In the current human panorama, class differentiates individuals more than sex.”- José Carlos Mariátegui

Up until now, there has not been a real fighting women’s organization in the US. This is because up until now women’s organizations have rejected two fundamental principles, 1) a women’s organization must be a fighting organization and 2) a women’s organizations must be firmly centered on class struggle in the interests of proletarian women as half of the proletariat. We aim to embody such principles and emerge as such an organization. PWM-MFP will dare to scale the heights and assault the skies. Through our courage and combativeness we will win the hearts of our class sisters and unleash a torrent of pent-up revolutionary energy; working women burn for revolution. Enough with the petty middle-class organizations, enough with their obscurities it is time we take up our post as women who dare to win the world.

Women of the working class today no longer have time to let the mental exercises of the campus intellectuals run our movement. We face the onslaught of a turning tide of extreme right-wing violence against our class firstly, and secondly against us as women. We see that the marginal government concessions of yesteryear are being swept from under us swiftly, proving once what a waste of time it can be to focus your whole movement on governmental reforms. We have failed to unite to take power back from the greedy, self-indulgent, propertied class that we produce for. They take everything from us, our dignity, our ability to earn a decent living, our children, and even our bodies. They use every part of us. We are their consumers, their workers, and the reproductive factory that produces their next generation of workers and consumers.  We have nothing to lose by fighting them and fight them we will because we have everything to win.

It is our particular set of oppressions that has given us the tools to become assets to the revolutionary project. Our conditions have forced us to be humble, vigilant, strong, and resourceful in order to survive. We aim to take these traits which have been used as tools of survival and sharpen them into spears and pierce the hearts of our oppressors. They have unwittingly forced upon us the very tools we will use to defeat them.

There is not one feminine nature to speak of. Women are made from their experiences. That is to say, we have many different defining characteristics and attributes. PWM-MFP exists to develop our most revolutionary aspects. We wish to do away with the narrow-minded aspirations of the bourgeois woman. We have no tolerance for women who wish to abandon their class and their cohorts, the postmodernists, who encourage them. We want to make ourselves clear that we stand against sexual exploitation and do not ascribe to the liberal notion that “sex work” is work at all or that it should be upheld as an empowering career choice for women. We have empathy for those women who are downcast into the lumpenproletariat or illegal sexual servitude and have every intention of standing beside them in the effort to bring them up into the ranks of the working class where they can share in our struggle and join us in our fight. For those women who wish to sanitize acts of prostitution and sexual exploitation in any of its forms, including pornography, we will regard them as agents of misogyny and will not hesitate to meet them with the same fate as the rapist, the john, the pimp, the abuser, various apologists for these etc. and for this we will not apologize, period. It is our position that prostitution is sexual violence and that all attempts to legitimize it as anything else are sexist crimes against proletarian women.

 

Austin, Texas

“We must recognize, uphold and defend our women leaders who have unwaveringly served our new and growing movement. On International Working Women’s Day we honor them and the undefeatable women of the working class.”-Red Guards Austin

In Austin, the need for PWM-MFP has been acute. In a city where working women face an onslaught of displacement, reactionary labor and women’s health laws, and predatory party culture. These are the things that motivate women to get involved. And what compounds and exacerbates these problems that we face is the absolute liberalism and passivity of traditional Austin activism. While we have seen in recent years the participation of militant women in the budding Communist movement here, the revisionist and liberal Austin activist scene is still overwhelmingly characterized by it’s most gutless and timid tendencies.

It is this very nature of Austin’s activism that allows organizations such as, PSL, to exist and hold public space while they cohort with a rapist and endorse hopeless politicians. PWM-MFP calls for women to join us in our mission to clean house. We hold that the time has come to rid the left of abusers, macktivists (mainly male activists who hit on women in the movement), revisionists, radical feminists, liberal feminists, and all feminist trends of the past. Austin, true to its recent history as a furnace of militant organizing will light the way for women countrywide to reclaim the role of the militant.

The lack of a disciplined and well-organized women’s movement has allowed for traditional activism to be dominated by men, this is evident in Austin where all revisionist organizations systematically fail at recruiting women (or only use them as tokens) and where the Maoist led movement has accomplished a change in the sky and inspired many new women, revolutionaries, to take up the fight. We aim to spread across the city and the whole country. No longer will we sit by and allow the women’s struggle to be degenerated by postmodernism, liberalism “sex-positivism”, and revisionism. Proletarian women have united and we are an unstoppable force shoulder to shoulder with our proletarian brothers, and allied classes in the oppressed nations. Throughout the world, in the most inspiring armed struggles women have proven themselves as not only capable fighters but some of the most fierce and uncompromising guerrillas, we hold their red flag high. Cast aside all illusions and stand up to struggle beside us against the oppression of women.

Long live the Popular Women’s Movement!

Viva, Movimiento Femenino Popular!

Women hold up half the sky!

-Popular Women’s Movement-Movimiento Femenino Popular, Austin Texas, 2018

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