Defend “The Squad” against racist, sexist attacks

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, and Ilhan Omar
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Pressley, and Ilhan Omar.
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Radical Women stands against the racist, sexist and xenophobic attacks on four Congresswomen of color – Ilhan Omar, Ayanna Pressley, Rashida Tlaib, and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez – by Trump, conservatives and the right wing. Although we disagree with the women’s affiliation with the pro-capitalist Democratic Party, we recognize they are being targeted because they are disobedient females and proud people of color who have stood up for immigrants and Palestinians and called out racism. The women are also facing pressure from Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats who want them to toe the line on party votes for border militarization and opposition to Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions of the oppressive colonial state of Israel.

It is important to note how anti-socialist red-baiting colors the attacks. Blasting opponents for being “commies” is a tried-and-true method of political intimidation that not only promotes witch hunts against actual radicals, but silences dissidents of all stripes.

If the women want to persist as courageous voices for the oppressed, we urge them to break with all pro-capitalist parties. The Democratic Party will not abide such opposition within its ranks. These leaders would be better served by aligning with anti-capitalist parties that agree on many of the issues they are getting heat for.

The letter below from Radical Women was published this week in a slightly revised form in the Seattle Times. I encourage you to write your own letters and share Radical Women’s tweets and Facebook posts on this and other issues. And please drop a line anytime to share your thoughts!

In solidarity,
Helen Gilbert
National RW Organizer

•••

Seattle Times letters editor

To the editor,

Charles Blow’s column, “The President is a raving racist, period,” (July 14, 2019) does an excellent job exposing how Trump’s attack on the four progressive Congresswomen of color is both racist and sexist. As Blow points out, it is not only the color of their skin, but their gender that makes them “other” to Trump’s rampaging patriarchal white-nationalist sensibilities. Another highly significant aspect of this debacle is the flagrant red-baiting by Trump and many of his supporters.

As a member of Radical Women, a socialist and feminist multi-racial organization, I can attest how bigotry, nationalism and anti-communism go together. “Go back to Russia,” they used to say when I sold leftist newspapers on Seattle streets. “Go back to Mexico,” they told my Chicana sister whose family was in the Southwest before the U.S. conquest. “Get laid,” they would yell at us women’s libbers. The defense of socialists, women, people of color and immigrants – including Seattle’s own embattled councilwoman Kshama Sawant – is crucial if free speech and diversity of opinion are to be allowed for anyone.

Helen Gilbert
Radical Women

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