Fourth Draft of A Revolutionary Party Platform
"If there is to be revolution, there must be a revolutionary party." (Mao Tse-Tung)
We the people of these United States in recognition of our shared oppression under the current, corporate-dominated government do hereby propose the establishment of a revolutionary political party. Such a party would be launched outside of the established parameters and would not be dependent upon corporate financing or subjected to its lobbying influence.
Our people’s party will recognize and acknowledge the following:
* The genomic breakthrough by the Human Genome Project of the new millennium confirms the biological, singular human race to which we all belong regardless of color or other differences. In short, there’s one race, the human race, and we all descended from Africa, the Motherland of humankind. While racism persists, we will de-institutionalize it through our revolutionary education and media, fighting bigotry with international solidarity, appreciation of differing cultures, and revolutionary politics. We will become the new men and women who will forge a new, nonracist paradigm.
* The Constitution is a flawed, antiquated, and racist document that needs to be corrected and updated.
In 1970, the Revolutionary Peoples Constitutional Convention (RPCC), led by the Black Panther Party and the original Rainbow Coalition, assembled some 10,000 people in Philadelphia to rewrite the Constitution. It was written in 1787 by British Aristocrats who were slave owners of Africans, poor Europeans, and others; excluded indigenous peoples and all women, and referred to the common people as “a great beast” and “scum.” It still authorizes States to import Persons but the tax or duty cannot exceed “ten dollars for each Person,” and although the 13th Amendment abolishes slavery, it’s still protected ”as a punishment for a crime.” Moreover, its 27 amendments cover civil rights but no provisions are made for human rights.
* The real minority is the opulent one percent whose cumulative wealth exceeds that of at least 45 percent of the U.S. population.
* The disparities in wealth and the ever-increasing poverty and decimation of the majority, the 99%, demand revolutionary change, not merely reform.
* The current political system must be abolished and replaced by one that enshrines into law human rights encompassing the basic right to live and thrive in a modern, global reality. Such human rights, comprising our collective needs, are as follows:
1) Environmental Protection. Scientists are now certain that the earth is warming as evidenced by catastrophic floods, droughts, wild fires, and the ongoing extinction of countless species. E.g., 90% of the planet’s big fish are now extinct. Every human being is affected by global warming and its horrific consequences. We must urgently move to create sustainable, green energy.
2) Clean, fresh water. Climate change and environmental pollution are infecting and threatening our access to clean, drinkable water. Corporate profiteering and privatization of this vital resource, without which life cannot exist, must be stopped.
3) Healthy, organic food. The virtual elimination of the family farm as the main agricultural producer and its replacement by agribusinesses such as Monsanto has wreaked havoc with the food system and introduced genetically modified produce and patented seeds that have jeopardized domestic and global food production. Such arrangements must be completely transformed and reorganized to provide for the equitable redistribution of food worldwide.
4) Full employment and job security. The global multinational corporations have enjoyed a race to the bottom in low-wage labor contracts moving from one nation to another to maximize profits. We propose a universal living wage for workers worldwide to compel companies to remain in their countries of origin, save shipping costs, reduce their carbon footprints, and provide full employment at living wages to their employees.
5) Universal (single payer) health care. Health care is a human right and as such should be guaranteed to every person living in the USA. Medical care should be a vital service provided by the government (the people’s revenues), not a for-profit business. Nursing homes should be phased out in favor of independent, community living.
6) Affordable Housing. Every person should have the human right to shelter from the harsh elements, privacy, and space in which to extend or raise a family. Today’s budget cuts will virtually eliminate subsidized housing in the face of massive homelessness and critical need. The “fastest growing public housing” is prisons, and when those residents are released, they’re denied Section 8 (affordable apartments) because of their prison record -- a clarion call for recidivism, or back to slavery. Gentrification, home foreclosures and urban removal must be stopped.
7) Universal Education and Job Training. The current race to the top, a continuation of the Bush Administration’s no child left behind debacle, has practically destroyed quality education in public schools. We need to provide all our children with a free, quality education from preschool to graduate school. Such education should teach us critical thinking, encourage current events discussion and debate, as well as required studies on the histories of Africa, Asia, and Latin America, their indigenous peoples and their contributions to the arts, sciences, and literature.
Job training should provide students with the latest tools and skills in construction, technology, and agriculture. Such training and education should be instituted in the prisons to assure employment upon release.
8) Affordable childcare. Businesses, schools and colleges should provide onsite childcare to employees with children and parental leave for newborns and childhood illnesses. Government subsidies should apply where needed. Such provisions have succeeded in other countries with very positive impact on employee productivity.
9) Social Security, unemployment insurance, and the safety net. In a country as wealthy as the USA, every person should be guaranteed an adequate income during hard times, illness, disability, and aging infirmity.
10) Justice and Peace. We demand an end to the current system of injustice that has institutionalized a prison industrial complex tantamount to chattel slavery. We want the immediate release of political prisoners and immigrant detainees, especially parents. We advocate abolition of the death penalty, trying children as adults, insanely long sentences and prolonged solitary confinement. We demand an end to the criminalization of drugs, racial profiling, and immigrant detention. Prisons should be transformed into places of educational productivity and therapeutic healing with the ultimate goal of being phased-out altogether.
We demand that aggressive, imperialist wars be terminated and that peace be given top priority in policy making.
11) Gender Equity. Women’s liberation gave women more employment within the capitalist system at a lower rate of pay, double duty at work and home, token representation in Board Rooms and politics per se. It changed the all male pronouns and gave us more access to sports and construction jobs. But men are still totally dominant, and the abuse of females is worse than ever, beginning with the fetus (selective abortion), infants (infanticide!), and lack of respect for girls, mothers, and grandmothers. Male supremacy is alive and well everywhere, which translates to aggressive wars and no balance.
Women are more than half the population, and should be at least half of all governing bodies (from city counsels to Congresses). There should be equal pay for equal work, compensation for caring and household work, and respect for women’s right to self-determination.
We recognize the equal human rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people to live openly with respect and fair treatment in our communities.
We also recognize that in order to finance the people’s needs, we would need to nationalize at least some industries. Since life in the modern world requires utilities such as gas, electricity, and telephone communications, we think these industries should belong to the people and provide for their basic human rights as described above.
“The two parties have combined against us to nullify our power by a 'gentlemen's agreement' of non-recognition, no matter how we vote...May God write us down as asses if ever again we are found putting our trust in either Republican or the Democratic parties.” (W.E.B. DuBois)
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and, accordingly, all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But, when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. (The Declaration of Independence)
The Black Panther Party’s Ten-Point Platform & Program had many of the same points tailored to the needs of our Black communities in the 1960s and replicated by other groups in our original, revolutionary Rainbow Coalition. We think it’s appropriate to forge an international party that embraces all cultures and ethnicities in this age of globalization, the internet, and cell-phone communications.
“People of the world unite!