XRRAAYS Statement on May Day - International Day of Worker's Struggle
The last months with the pandemic, quarantine, the restrictions, and the states of alarm, the many crises generated by our capitalist system of death and of multiple oppressions: patriarchal and colonial, deepen. These structural crisis, much larger and deeper than COVID-19, although it has hit all of humanity and the planet, it is also necessary to recognize that the most catastrophic impacts are occurring in the most vulnerable and historically excluded sectors of the Latin American population and on to Mother Earth, an incessant source of exploitation for the extraction of raw materials!
On May 1st , 1886, the working class went on strike in the US as part of an international fight against capitalist super-exploitation under the banner of the Three 8s: "8 hours of work, 8 hours of sleep, 8 hours of time free". The capitalists and their States responded that this was impossible, that if the workday was reduced to 8 hours, production would break and everything would fall apart. A lot of blood was spilled under the capitalist repression against this strike, but the struggle of the working class would win the 8 hours of working day throughout the world.
Under neoliberalism, the capitalists with their bloody and fiery dictatorships ripped off each of the workers and popular victories of the 20th century, concentrating wealth, increasing inequality, eliminating rights, making the labour market more flexible, commodifying common goods and Life.
Little by little, an increasing difference was being created, the richest 10% in Latin America and the Caribbean owns 71% of the wealth and pays only 5.4% of their income. The wealth of a few through the exploitation of the labour force is the misery and lack of rights of a majority.
In turn this capitalist system is based on the looting of our common goods, the destruction of nature, it is an extractive and polluting model that has led to climate change we see today, disease and death. All with the sole objective of continuing to maximize the profits of the great businessmen and power groups to perpetuate a logic of exacerbated consumption, which will only lead to the destruction of our Earth, our only home.
This form of agro-export and monoculture production without food sovereignty is carried out at the cost of our lives and our health and prevents people from inhabiting the planet with dignity.
The large population in cities, living in overcrowded conditions, the difficulties in accessing health, work, education, housing and certain basic and essential resources such as drinking water makes us more likely to contract new diseases and that these end up in pandemics; or that old diseases, already overcome in some sectors of society, to become lethal for others, such as tuberculosis, measles, Chagas disease or malaria.
All these consequences take different forms depending on our place in society, highlighting how patriarchy is structuring capitalism. For example, all over the world women and sexual dissents, lesbians, transsexuals, bisexuals, non-binaries, trans, transvestites are the ones that suffer the most from unemployment and job insecurity. This is largely due to the fact that they are the ones who carry out the domestic and care tasks in their homes without receiving a salary in exchange or holding assumed/naturalised roles without sharing such tasks, and therefore it becomes very difficult to sustain those long hours of double exploitation and responsibilities together with a formal job outside the home.
In turn, although the feminist movement has made great strides and is on the rise, starring in great feats of struggle, the patriarchal violence that goes hand in hand with capitalism, takes the lives of thousands of women and dissident identities on a daily basis. This form of violence is based on the domination of women's bodies and sexuality, taking away their knowledge, desires and decisions and, wanting to relegate them to a role of reproducers of the necessary labour to fatten the corporate profits and a system of oppression with deeply colonial roots.
Also, the colonial violence, inherited from the conquest, is presented in a starker way towards the Native, Afro and Peasant peoples. The Nation States that we know today have been founded from the extermination of pre-existing peoples, and even today discrimination and violence continue to function to erase their culture, language and customs. The displacement and expropriation of their lands for the real estate business, the subjugation of their forms of community organization and the construction of their identities as an internal enemy, are proof that there is still atrocious State repression.
As part of the same offensive, the mass media and other mechanisms such as religious extremism, today represent the pillars to create large masses of the population convinced that inequality is natural and that the "development" of the West is the way.
Along with new technologies, not so new ones are imposed on us as well: forms of social control generating important changes in the world of work. A society increasingly fragmented and producing through virtual means, which puts a greater level of oppression on the large majority of the population that dedicate themselves to so-called informal work and feminized work not expressly recognized by the market, such as care and reproduction of the life.
In the same way we face precarious work conditions, where under the discourse of being an entrepreneur and supposedly self-autonomous, self-exploitation, outsourcing, lack of guarantees and total loss of rights that range from union organization to health and pension are hidden.
Throughout all these years however, the working class has not given up and maintains in its collective memory and in its daily activities the popular organization throughout the world, which keeps hope alive. Millions upon millions fight, sometimes with victories, many others with defeats, but always building responses to solve our problems from the solidarity of those below.
Even in situations of resistance or defence, we promote popular initiative because we know that in there lies the key to sow, cultivate and reap another possible world.
Despite the current context, we vividly preserve the recent experiences of the Chilean, Ecuadorian, Colombian and Bolivian people against neoliberal adjustment and the implantation of new dictatorships, as is the case in Bolivia. The processes of massive popular struggle and creation of proposals in the streets, barricades, confrontations against repressive forces in the neighbourhoods, popular pots protests, civil disobedience, strikes, picket, roadblocks, uprisings, economies of solidarity and the internationalist articulation between sibling peoples, show us that this is the fundamental and indispensable path today.
Internationalist solidarity has also been essential for processes with the Cuban and the Venezuelan to continue defending their sovereignty today and raising flags of freedom and justice for our peoples.
We need that social isolation does not permeate into our working class, that states of exception are seen as an exception and not the rule, to fight individualism and the police state between neighbours. That the distance necessary to overcome this pandemic is not installed as a way of life and that, on the contrary, we continue to maintain the awareness of unity and struggle that we have managed to build as workers.
This May Day we went out to plant popular pots, cacerolazos, seedlings, take balconies, flag houses and communes, to express ourselves against the hunger and misery that exist throughout our continent. Seeds like flags that indicate that the working people, the landless, the peasant, the first nations, the Afro, the women, the transvestites and all sexual dissident identities rely on their own strength. That health is a daily and collective construction. It is taking care of ourselves: taking care of our food, our rest, taking care that no one treats us as merchandise, taking care of patriarchal violence and that our dignity and that our access to comprehensive health is respected.
We, the people from below, have built the world with our own hands and we came to it to be free or fight until we achieve it.
Capitalism is the Pandemic! Our lives are worth more than your earnings! Freedom for all political prisoners! Enough persecutions of popular organizations! No to the coup d'état in Bolivia! Life first, capital down! The debt is with the people, not with the IMF!
FOR A FIRST OF MAY IN THE UNITY FOR THEY WHO FIGHT, RESIST AND BUILD FOR THE RELEASE AND HAPPINESS OF THOSE FROM BELOW!
CONAIE Confederación de Nacionalidades Indígenas del Ecuador-Ecuador
Congreso de los Pueblos - Colombia
MTST Movimiento de Trabajadores Sin Techo-Brasil
CONFENIAE Confederación de Nacionalidades Indígenas de la Amazonía Ecuatoriana-Ecuador
FPDS Frente Popular Darío Santillán-Argentina
ONIC Organización Nacional Indígena de Colombia-Colombia
FOL Frente de Organizaciones en Lucha- Argentina
Movimiento de los Pueblos/por un socialismo feminista desde abajo (Frente Popular Darío Santillán Corriente Nacional-Movimiento por la Unidad Latinoamericana y el Cambio Social -Izquierda Latinoamericana Socialista-Movimiento 8 de Abril) - Argentina
MICC, Movimiento Indígena y Campesino Cotopaxi-CONAIE
MBL Movimiento de Barrios en Lucha - Ecuador
Movimiento Pueblo Lucha y Trabajo ( MPLT) Argentina
Venceremos. Partido de Trabajadorxs - Argentina.
Feminismo Comunitario Antipatriarcal -Bolivia.
Marabunta. Corriente Social y Política - Argentina.
FS Fábrica Surda - Ecuador
Democracia Socialista - Argentina
Organización Revolucionaria Guevarista - Argentina
Venceremos Abriendo Caminos - Argentina
Polo Ciudadano - Panama
LUCHAS (Liga Unitaria Chavista Socialista) de Venezuela
Coordinadora Socialista Revolucionaria - México
RUA Juventud Anticapitalista - Brasil
Red Feminista Ecosocialista - Ecuador
Movimiento Guevarista - Bolivia
Corriente Política de Izquierda - Argentina
Corriente político sindical Rompiendo Cadenas -Argentina
Jóvenes Ante la Emergencia Nacional - México
Movimiento Insurgente - Bolivia
ASL Acción Socialista Libertaria - Argentina
Convergencia 2 de Abril - Chile
Trabajadorxs Movilizadxs - Chile
SME (Sindicato Mexicano de Electricistas) - México
NCT (Nueva Central de Trabajadores) - México.
ANUEE (Asamblea Nacional de Usuarios de Energía Eléctrica) - México
Federación de Jubilados, Pensionados y Adultos Mayores - México
OPT (Organización Política del Pueblo y los Trabajadores) - México
PRT (Partido Revolucionario de los Trabajadores) - México
Espacio cultural, político y social La Casita en Marabunta - Guernica, Argentina.
Escuela Popular Permanente Concepción Chile
Asamblea Popular Wallpen Chile
Colectiva Feminista Socialista Voces de Lilith
Federação dos Órgãos para Assistência Social e Educacional (FASE), Brasil
Brigadas Populares, Brasil
União dos Trabalhadores e Trabalhadoras Camelôs, Feirantes e Ambulantes do Brasil (UNICAB)
Amigos da Terra América Latina e Caribe (ATALC)
Fórum da Amazônia Oriental (FAOR)
Amigos da Terra, Brasil
CADTM – AYNA (Comité para la Abolición de las Deudas Ilegítimas - Abya Yala)
XRRAAYS (Red de Afinidad Abya Ayala del Sur)
Central dos Movimentos Populares (CMP), Brasil
Asamblea autoconvocada Lauca de Arica - Chile
Rede Jubileu Sul, Brasil
Original Statement in Spanish!