January 6th - Points of Orientation
The US Capitol Building is not a beacon of democracy but it is the center of the most violent imperialist power in world history.
Revolutionary socialists should not confuse ourselves with law and order liberals by condemning the act of insurrection itself but instead should condemn the Jan. 6 participants for their backwards and reactionary right wing political beliefs and motivations.
We all know that the FBI has always focused primarily on disrupting and destroying leftist movements. There was even recent hit movie about the FBI’s involvement with the assassination of Fred Hampton (Judas and the Black Messiah). Despite this, many liberals have deluded themselves into thinking that the FBI are the good guys now. Self-described “progressives'' are bragging about turning people in to the FBI. Few of us will shed tears over seeing our enemies in conflict with each other but our tactics for fighting fascism should not include snitching and collaboration with forces of repression.
What applies to the FBI should apply to police in general. Cops who protect ruling class politicians are not heroes. The Capitol Police always seem prepared to crack skulls when people protest for social justice but on Jan. 6 the police on the scene likely had sympathy for the right wing crowd. Their lack of preparedness reflected a clear bias against deeming white petit-bourgeois men as a threat.
The relatively light sentences handed out to individuals involved in Jan.6, as compared with harsh punishments historically handed out to to leftists should underscore the nature of the criminal injustice system in the US. Even when right wingers find themselves on the wrong side of the law they are treated gently.
The capitalist state can not protect people from fascist movements but liberalism can pave the way for fascism to take over by coopting militant movements and steering them into peaceful and legal channels that disarm the working class both in a literal sense and ideologically.
The role of the state in a capitalist system is to serve the interests of the ruling class, even if those interests are harmful to the majority of people. The United States government was created to enrich capitalists and slaveowners and those fundamental principles guide the institutions of today. The working class has no interest in defending this system.
Democracy was neither saved nor threatened on Jan. 6. You can’t save or threaten what you never had to begin with. Genuine democracy will be the working class, who are the overwhelming majority of society, in political power and ruling in our own interests. That will require a revolution.