Report from Connecticut CPUSA

BY: Brian Steinberg| June 16, 2020
Report from Connecticut CPUSA


Without doubt we must respond to the increasing new structural contradictions of capitalism caused by the coronavirus. Conditions of long-term unemployment seem very likely. We are reminded by the works of Lenin and Gramsci that fightback against capitalist contradictions does not emanate spontaneously from the contradictions of capitalism. It is necessary to build organization that can lead to a class-conscious fightback. The building of committees on unemployment and the use of our social centers in this struggle for employment is a great beginning for the challenges ahead.

Our years of work in Connecticut in specific multi-racial working-class neighborhoods has left us with neighborhood party clubs with an orbit of unemployed workers whose numbers have now expanded enormously with the virus. It has enabled us the potential to provide unemployed comrades to the unemployment committees, which have a class-conscious, working-class approach.

These inroads were made by years of circulating our press door-to-door initially with the printed People’s World and now with our four-page paper in these selected neighborhoods. Consistency over time led to personal trust, a needed component to our large recruitment in these neighborhoods. It also brought us into the fight against police brutality existing at high levels in our selected neighborhoods, which culminated in our work with the then progressive component of the Democratic Party in the 1990s. That component, together with People for a Change, a party of left progressives, took three seats on the Hartford City Council from the Republican Party—seats allotted by law to a second party. This isolated the conservative Democratic Party component. Most of those allotted seats are now held by the Working Families Party.

The mayor of Hartford, Carrie Saxon Perry, in her campaign had charged the police as acting as overseers on a plantation. She immediately worked with our party in the creation of a civilian police review board and placed our party leader in that neighborhood to the board. The problem of slick defensive lawyers getting police officers off by manipulating juries was met in the charter. Complainants now have the ability to take the review board to civil court for a judge to rule on suing the city. Either get your police in order or the city will have to pay a settlement.

Joe’s comments about the need for independent working-class politics, structures, and platforms within these broader coalitions is key and remains critical in the continual fight to protect these neighborhoods while at the same time maintaining the coalition to defeat the extreme right. It is the only way to ensure against efforts to dilute, divert, or be co-opted from what is needed and what has been accomplished and at the same time to muster the forces necessary to defeat the extreme right.

Report to the National Committee, June 6, 2020.

Image: CT CPUSA Facebook.



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