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Related Categories: East Bay | Police State & Prisons
View other events for the week of 2/ 9/2002
Protest in Defense of Immigrant Rights!!!
Date Saturday February 09
Time 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Location Details
Frank Ogawa Plaza, Oakland. 14th & Broadway.
Event Type Protest
Organizer/Author
All Out! Anti-Terrorist Laws Target Immigrants, Blacks, Labor--- No to the USA-Patriot Act and the Maritime Security Act! Down With the Anti-Immigrant Witchhunt! Mobilize Union Power! Frank Ogawa Plaza, Oakland 14th & Broadway February 9, 2 PM Partisan Defense Committee PRESS RELEASE P.O. Box 99, Canal Street Station, New York, NY 10013 P.O. Box 77462, San Francisco, CA 94107 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE PRESS CONTACT: Kathy Ikegami 6 February 2002 (510) 839-0852 Press Conference Announces Feb. 9 Rally in Defense of Immigrants "This is the first labor-centered demonstration in the entire country to oppose these repressive laws, specifically the Maritime Security Act [MSA] and the USA-Patriot Act, which target immigrants, blacks and Hispanics and other minorities, but is also aimed at the trade unions and all working people," Gene Herson, national labor coordinator for the Partisan Defense Committee, said today in introducing the press conference on the steps of Oakland's City Hall. Powerful unions which have endorsed the February 9 protest include the International Longshore and Warehouse Union Locals 10 and 6, AFSCME Local 444 whose treasurer, Chris Fisher, spoke in solidarity, and the Amalgamated Transit Union Black Caucus. PDC spokesman Kathy Ikegami stressed: "Longshoremen are directly threatened by the MSA, which calls for firing dock workers who do not pass 'background checks' for past criminal records. This targets black and Latino workers in particular who have been on the receiving end of racist cop harassment. Especially at risk are the heavily immigrant port truckers who have no union protection." The call to mobilize labor in defense of immigrants has been greeted with a tremendous response by immigrant and community groups in the Bay Area. Eduardo Palomo of the SF Day Labor Program, in a statement translated from Spanish, said: "Now this Patriot Act lays the basis for more new laws and after that, what will we do? That is, they're going to be instituting stronger laws each time. That's why we are creating a mobilization of all the working masses, immigrants in the whole country, to resist these Patriot Act laws that serve no purpose other than to criminalize working people." Jane Comandao of the Filipino Workers Association spoke against the layoffs of Filipino workers in the airports, hotels and restaurants, linking the plight of these workers to the desperate condition of working people in the Philippines itself, where there have been protests against the U.S. military presence. Speaking for one of the unions present at the press conference, Charles Minster, steward and delegate to the San Francisco Labor Council for National Park and Public Employees, LIUNA Local 1141, said: "I'm very proud today to stand here with my immigrant brothers and sisters to know that I, and the rest of the labor movement that is here today and is going to be here on Saturday, can offer defense and support for these brothers and sisters." The press conference was also addressed by Jeff Higgins of the Bay Area Labor Black League for Social Defense, which initiated the rally along with the Partisan Defense Committee under the demands: Anti-Terrorist Laws Target Immigrants, Blacks, Labor--No to the USA-Patriot Act and the Maritime Security Act! Down with the Anti-Immigrant Witchhunt! The rally will be held Saturday, February 9 at 2 p.m. at Frank Ogawa Plaza, 14th Street and Broadway in Oakland. ----------------------------------------------------- Commemorate Black History Month With United Class Struggle! Call to Action by the Bay Area Labor Black League for Social Defense and the Partisan Defense Committee We call on the powerful multiracial unions in the Bay Area to mobilize against the government's war on America's integrated working class, on black people and on immigrants. Every bombing raid and missile attack on Afghanistan came together with new deadly assaults on the democratic rights of all of us. Bush and Attorney-General Ashcroft---that apologist for the Confederate slavocracy---have taken first aim at people of Near Eastern descent who were rounded up and thrown in jail where hundreds still remain. They've created the spectre of an "enemy within" in order to strengthen the powers of their own consummately violent state. But what America's racist rulers can get away with will be determined by class struggle. We must fight now to defend our rights and jobs, and the rights and jobs of our immigrant brothers and sisters. A united demonstration of the power of our class, together with youth, black and immigrant organizations, can spike the bosses’ racist "national unity" campaign. Under the USA-Patriot Act, rammed through with bipartisan support in the wake of the criminal attack on the World Trade Center, non-citizens can be deported without a hearing while operations like the FBI's COINTELPRO, which murdered 38 Black Panthers and framed hundreds more, are once more officially sanctioned. "National security" is also the pretext for a frontal assault on the longshore unions, a historic bastion of labor power, under the Port, Maritime and Rail Security Act. Down with the anti-immigrant witchhunt! No to the USA-Patriot Act and Maritime Security Act! The "war on terrorism" is aimed straight at the heart of the working class. Hundreds of New Jersey teachers striking for a decent contract were handcuffed and jailed, while their union spokesman was denounced as "the representative of the Taliban." The State Attorney of South Carolina compared International Longshoremen's Association members in Charleston, who had fought to defend their union against cops and scabs, to the World Trade Center terrorists. Black Panther leaders Fred Hampton and Mark Clark, murdered by Chicago cops in 1969, got a full blast of what being labeled a "terrorist" in capitalist America means. Coordinating these repressive measures is Tom Ridge, the man who signed two death warrants against former Panther Mumia Abu-Jamal, an innocent man framed up for the 1981 killing of a Philadelphia cop, who was sentenced to death for his political views. Free Mumia now! Abolish the racist death penalty! On the docks, largely immigrant port truckers are already being harassed by armed cops and federal agents. The Maritime Security Act---authored by a Democratic Party senator from "open shop" South Carolina---calls for "background checks" under which waterfront workers can be fired for any conviction in the past 10 years on any of 20 felony offenses, including minor drug charges. This directly threatens the jobs of black and Latino longshoremen who have been on the receiving end of the racist cop harassment in the ghettos and barrios under the so-called "war on drugs." Just as the fight for black freedom is central to the liberation of all working people, the labor movement can only defend itself if it defends the rights of immigrants. In this country, the raw exploitation of labor has always come wrapped in the envelope of racial and ethnic-religious hostilities fomented by the capitalist rulers. Black oppression is the cornerstone of American capitalism. But black and immigrant workers are not helpless victims; they're a vital component of the multiracial working class. Armed with the militant traditions of their homelands, immigrant workers have been a key part of labor battles in this country, from the 1912 "Bread and Roses" strike in the Massachusetts textile mills to the Justice for Janitors organizing drive in L.A. Together with black workers, they can help spark a working-class offensive against racial oppression and capitalist exploitation. From the Chinese exclusion acts over a century ago to Mexican workers deported during the Great Depression and the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II, assaults on the immigrant workforce have always gone hand in hand with stepped-up oppression of blacks and the persecution of the most militant workers. Don't forget---here in California the anti-immigrant Proposition 187 led directly to the racist, anti-affirmative action Proposition 209 two years later. We demand: Full citizenship rights for all immigrants! We must fight against deportations, for unionizing the unorganized and for a shorter workweek with no loss in pay in order to spread the available work. Let our motto be class struggle---joining forces against our common enemy, the capitalist ruling class! The labor bureaucracy's commitment to the capitalist system leads them to denounce Mexican truckers and our downtrodden working-class brothers and sisters throughout Latin America and Asia for "stealing American jobs." This is a convenient fraud which promotes anti-immigrant bigotry at home and is directly opposed to our fighting unity as a class against the bosses' "divide and rule" schemes. Peddling the lie that the interests of the workers and their exploiters are compatible, AFL-CIO head John Sweeney says that "no sacrifice is too great" for workers to make for the reactionary "war on terror." Opposition to the war on labor, blacks and immigrants at home means opposition to the wars of American capitalism abroad. All U.S./UN/ NATO troops out of Afghanistan, the Near East and Central Asia! Instead of mobilizing union power to defend their members and all the oppressed, the labor tops sell the Democratic Party as the "friend of labor." But the Democrats, like the Republicans, represent the interests of the class enemy. The only difference is that the Republicans openly revel in attacking the working people and oppressed; the Democrats lie and do the same thing. Black Democrats like Barbara Lee, with her show of opposition--however superficial--to Bush's war powers are positioning themselves to contain and head off increasing discontent as the recession and racist repression bite. Democrat Bill Clinton declared "I feel your pain" while he axed welfare and spearheaded an anti-immigrant crackdown. Here in the Bay Area, "liberal" Democratic mayor Jerry Brown's gentrification plan for Oakland encouraged rampages through black West Oakland by the police gang who took the name "Riders" from the nightriders of the KKK. On the other side of the Bay Bridge, mayor Willie Brown has launched a new war on the homeless of San Francisco while 16,000 laid-off workers in low-wage industries face homelessness, and those still employed are only a paycheck away from the same fate. To fight for its interests the working class must stand independent of all agencies and parties of the class enemy. The trade-union misleaders who have shackled labor's power to support for the Democrats now offer to help implement "security" on the docks and elsewhere. It is not the job of the workers to enforce the laws, "security" or otherwise, that will be used against them: cops and security guards have no place in the union movement! There must be a political struggle within the trade unions, the only significant racially integrated institutions in segregation America, to break from the Democrats and build a class-struggle leadership which will champion the cause of black freedom and the defense of immigrant rights. The working class needs its own party---one that fights for a workers government. Those who labor must rule! Mobilize Multiracial Union Power in a Mass Labor-Centered Protest! Defend Immigrants, Blacks, Labor Targeted by Anti-Terrorist Laws! 20 January 2002 All Out! Saturday, February 9, 2 PM, Frank Ogawa Plaza, Oakland -------------------------------------------------------------------- List of endorsers as of February 2, 2002: 20:45 PST Mumia Abu-Jamal, Revolutionary Journalist, Death Row, PA African Students Union, Hunter College, New York, NY AFSCME Local 444, Oakland, CA Al-Awda/Palestine Right To Return Coalition - NY/NJ Committee Amalgamated Transit Union Black Caucus Asociacion Tepeyac de New York, New York, NY Marcellus Barnes, President, Amalgamated Transit Union Black Caucus, Chicago, IL Willie Lee Bell, retired Recording Secretary, IAM&AW Local 739 and 1584,* Oakland, CA Berkeley Stop the War Coalition, Berkeley, CA Berlin Afrikanisches ImmigrantInnen Projekt, Berlin, Germany Jackie B. Breckenridge, International Vice President, Amalgamated Transit Union AFL-CIO* Canadian Arab Federation, Toronto, Canada CARECEN, Central American Resource Center, San Francisco, CA Leroy Collier, President, National Association of Letter Carriers, Branch 2200,* Pasadena, CA Coordination Nationale des Sans Papiers, Paris, France Michael Crahan, President, LIUNA Local 1141,* San Francisco, CA Ron Dicks, V.P. for Political & Legisl. Action, International Federation of Professional & Technical Engineers Local 21,* San Francisco, CA Filipino Workers Association, Richmond, CA Freedom Socialist Party Nicholas Harrigan, Love & Rage,* Sydney, Australia John Holmes, Delegate, Representative Assembly, Typographical Sector, Northern California Media Workers Union #39521, CWA* Mustapha Houamed, Secretary, Student Committee for Peace in Palestine,* St. Denis University, Paris, France Paul Howes, Organising & Research Assistant, Labor Council of New South Wales,* Sydney, Australia Hakim Husien, Chicago Chapter President, Palestine Aid Society,* Chicago, IL Leon Harris, Interim Secretary-Treasurer, International Longshore and Warehouse Union, Local 6, Oakland, CA International Federation of Iraqi Refugees (Sydney) Inc., Sydney, Australia International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 6, Oakland, CA International Longshore and Warehouse Union Local 10, San Francisco, CA Internationalist Group Geronimo ji Jaga Justice Action, Sydney, Australia Kaws.El.Karama, newspaper, Tunis, Tunisia Kurdish, Turkish Human Rights Committee, Melbourne, Australia La Raza Centro Legal, San Francisco, CA Labor Black League for Social Defense, Oakland, CA Labor Council for Latin American Advancement - SF (LCLAA), San Francisco, CA Latino Workers Center, New York, NY Adam Lincoln, Industrial Workers of the World,* Sydney, Australia Patricia Loya, Executive Director, Centro Legal de la Raza,* Oakland, CA LTS-Contracorriente, Mexico City, Mexico Stephen Lysaght, President, East Bay Area Local, American Postal Workers Union,* Walnut Creek, CA Bro. Joel Magallan, S.J., Executive Director, Asociacion Tepeyac de New York, New York, NY Patricia Macarthy-Schaefer, Advisor, Berlin Afrikanisches ImmigrantInnen Projekt, Berlin, Germany Ronald Malone, Shop Steward, HERE Local 2,* San Francisco, CA Brian McWilliams, SFLC delegate, International Longshore and Warehouse Union,* San Francisco, CA Charles Minster, Steward and SFLC delegate, National Park and Public Employees, LIUNA Local 1141,* San Francisco, CA Eugene “Gus” Newport, former Mayor, Berkeley, CA NY Labor Black League for Social Defense, New York, NY Kiilu Nyasha, Producer/Programmer, “Connecting the Dots” KPOO 89.5 FM,* San Francisco, CA Gary Okihiro, Professor, Columbia University,* New York, NY One World Society, Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland Partisan Defense Committee Pilipino Workers Center of So. Cal., Los Angeles, CA Radical Women Revolutionary Reconstruction Club @ Bronx Community College, Bronx, NY German Reyes, Shop Steward, SEIU Local 87,* San Francisco, CA Wilson Riles, candidate, Riles for Mayor,* Oakland, CA Eduardo Rosario, Vice President, GCIU Local 4N,* and President, LCLAA-SF, San Francisco, CA Michael Rossman, archivist, Free Speech Movement Archives,* Berkeley, CA Stephanie Ruby, Secretary-Treasurer, HERE Local 2850,* Oakland, CA Renée Saucedo, Director, SF Day Labor Program, San Francisco, CA SF Day Labor Program, San Francisco, CA Earl Silbar, Chief Steward, AFSCME Local 3506,* Chicago, IL Sindicato Independiente de Trabajadores de la Universidad Aut[o]noma Metropolitana, Mexico City, Mexico Donald A. Smith, Executive Board-Trustee, NALC,* Pasadena, CA Socialist Workers Organization SOS Struggle of Students, Hamburg, Germany Spartacist League/U.S. Spartacus Youth Club, San Francisco Bay Area Senfo Tonkam, Chairman, SOS Struggle of Students, Hamburg, Germany David Villarruel Velasco, Secretario de Relaciones y Solidaridad, Sindicato Independiente de Trabajadores de la Universidad Aut[o]noma Metropolitana, Mexico City, Mexico Ted Wang, Policy Director, Chinese for Affirmative Action,* San Francisco, CA Everette Whitfield, Steward, SEIU Local 73,* Chicago, IL John Williams, Shop Steward, General Motors Holden, Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union,* Melbourne, Australia Gerald Zero, Secretary-Treasurer, Teamsters Local 705,* Chicago, IL * Organizational affiliation for identification purposes only. ----------------------------------------------------- The PDC is a class-struggle, non-sectarian legal and social defense organization which champions cases and causes in the interest of the whole of the working people. This purpose is in accordance with the political views of the Spartacist League.
Added to the calendar on Tuesday Feb 3rd, 2004 10:25 AM
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