[Marxism] Question re Latinos sank the Republicans in the mid-termelections

Joaquin Bustelo jbustelo at bellsouth.net
Wed Nov 8 11:46:22 MST 2006


Gilles: "What will you do then, advocate to vote for the Republicans?"

OK I will explain it to you "intellectually" since you seem completely at a
loss for any feel for what is going on.

What took place this spring was the awakening of a political subject or
actor, the Latino community of the United States. There are still countless
divisions and cross currents, the process of cohering will not be easy. 

What took place in this election was part of the cohering. Insitincitvely
yet collectively, Latinos acted to punish the party responsible for the
attacks on the community.

So it is really very much NOT a question of what I or other activists
advocated or might advocate two years from now or four. I STILL don't think
people in the immigrant rights movement should have abandoned the movement
to focus on electing Democrats. Even though I'm glad and I welcome the
voting minority of the community having punished the Republicans the way
they did, that's not our job. 

But I ALSO didn't go around telling people to not vote Democrat. People
wanted to give the Republicans the finger and one obvious way to do it was
to vote Democrat, and I'm fine with it, I don't have a problem with it, it's
not some sort of disaster for the movement, on the contrary my judgement is
that it is a good thing, especially if the community is educated about what
it accomplished. By acting together we screwed this party that had decided
to use our community for a punching bag and made them lose. And that's GOOD.

What would have been a problem, what I would have objected to, is to stop
having our rallies, marches and demonstrations to stop organizing and
protesting in order to not embarras supposed politician "friends." But that
didn't happen. The movement did not fall apart. We held a series of protests
around labor day, again at the end of september and beginning of October.
And there's a lot of discussion about what sort of spring offensive to
mount.

There is a political process going on, collective political life, a social
force *in motion,* something that hasn't been seen in this country on that
sort of scale for many, many moons. 

The real task is not to sit in judgement but to try to understand the
process and what it means socially and politically, and contribute in what
modest ways we can to moving it forward. That process right now is one of
collective identification and cohering and organization flowing from this.
It does not go THROUGH electoral tactics right now, though I guess it was
inevitable it would find electoral expression in some form or fashion.

Joaquín






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