Workers' Weekly On-Line
Volume 46 Number 5, March 8, 2016 ARCHIVE HOME JBCENTRE SUBSCRIBE

International Women’s Day 2016

Women at the Forefront of the Fight to Safeguard the Future of Society

On the occasion of International Women's Day 2016, RCPB(ML) sends its revolutionary greetings to women throughout the world who are affirming their rights, who are front and centre of the struggle against imperialism, war, oppression and exploitation, and who are rightfully at the forefront of the project to build a new world, a new society without the exploitation of persons by persons and where the rights of all are recognised simply by virtue that all are human. Women's dignity, security and future lies in the fight for the rights of all.

Today's society attempts to downgrade women as human beings, to put them in subordination to men, to reduce their participation to so-called women's roles. And yet despite this, and in direct contradiction to this promoted view, women are very much at the forefront of all the struggles going on in society. In fact, women as a collective are a force in society who are taking up and leading the fight to defend the rights of all. Women lead the fight to

defend the NHS, women are at the forefront of the anti-war movement and in fighting for an anti-war government, and women are demanding that social programmes be defended and placed centre stage. Women are showing what it means to be political by being at the forefront of the various struggles being waged. Women are at the forefront and the centre in all aspects, and women are taking their place as second to none.

Women are fighting for a just society and in all areas they are taking a just stand. Women are showing what their right to be actually is, and are showing that it is consistent with opening the door to progress, to a new society.

Those that are exercising the dictate over society in imposing the anti-social offensive, which is today expressed in the form of the fraudulent austerity programme, are mouthing words that they are listening to women, or are concerned about the violence and abuse against women and young girls. Yet these forces stand for escalating the conditions which give rise to all the abuses against women. In fact, women are bearing the brunt of this anti-social offensive.

Women are giving the lie to this propaganda through their very actions in fighting for the rights of the whole society. They are taking a courageous stand against the perspective which is being pushed that the issue is to realise individual women's ambitions to break the "glass ceiling" and take their place as equal partners in the exploitation of society by the big monopolies and the warmongers. Women are taking a crucial stand that No means No! not just on the abuse and exploitation of women and women workers, but on all attacks on society and the public good. The fact is that all over Britain women are taking up leading positions in the struggles of the people against the anti-social offensive and for the victory of a pro-social programme.

In a modern age and a modern society, the most enlightened thinking is needed and this enlightenment demands that women are at the forefront of solving the problems of society alongside everyone else. What is needed is democratic renewal where the new conditions bring commensurately new arrangements. It is wishful thinking to think that

societal change can be made without resisting the neo-liberal agenda; and this is why the affirmation of all the struggles to fight this agenda and to take up the building of the new is so important. And this is why, within this context, that the affirmation of fight of women to take up their place in the fight for an anti-war government and in the fight for the rights of all, is so important.

The conclusion is that women must create the conditions for them to take their place in all spheres of society, and in practice, against all the odds that the status quo of capitalist exploitation places on them, they are doing so. And in taking up these struggles, women are also fighting for a change in the direction of society, they are demanding a decisive say in the running of society.

There Is a Necessity in Women Playing the Leading Role in Transforming Society, Looking at What is Central not Peripheral, What is Proactive not just Reactive

The present period is one of retreat of revolution. However, it cannot be said that there is no alternative to the retrogression being imposed on society. Far from it. As Lenin said on this day in 1920, "Capitalism combines formal equality with economic and, consequently, social inequality. This is one of the principal distinguishing features of capitalism, one that is mendaciously screened by the supporters of the bourgeois, the liberals, and that is not understood by the petty-bourgeois democrats. Out of this distinguishing feature of capitalism by the way, the necessity arises while fighting resolutely for economic equality, openly to recognise capitalist inequality [...] But capitalism cannot be consistent even with regard to formal equality (equality before the law, 'equality' between the well-fed and the hungry, between the property-owner and the property-less). And one of the most flagrant manifestations of this inconsistency is the inferior position of woman compared with man. Not a single bourgeois state, not even the most progressive, republican democratic state, has brought about complete equality of rights."

Our stand is that the complete emancipation of women is inescapably connected with the emancipation of the working class and the whole of society, that in the act of emancipating itself, the working class emancipates the whole of society. Our call, therefore, in the context of the necessity for the transformation of society under the leadership of the working class, is for working women to join in working out and implementing the independent programme of the working class, which is necessary for this transformation, for democratic renewal, and build the organisations of the class which are indispensable for this transformation.

Our experience in this regard also is that if not consciously participating in this struggle for the emancipation of women as part of safeguarding the future of the whole of society, then the pressure is for women to get overwhelmed, along with all other sections of the working people. Our call is to recognise the necessity of consciously adopting the road of the line of march to a new society, discuss this with everyone, so as to make the act of emancipation that of the women themselves.

Women workers must raise their own demands within the struggle for the emancipation of the entire working class. Only in this way can all women be emancipated. We call on class-conscious women to join RCPB(ML), take an advanced position and become leaders of society. This is a crucial problem of our times, to oppose getting diverted into what is known as "identity politics", or movements which do not serve the cause of ending the enslavement of peoples, or worse that call for regime change under the illusory banners of "defence of human rights" or that serve a pro-war agenda. In this way the voice of women can be genuinely heard alongside and as part of the voice of the working class.

We can in this way set the sights of all of humanity on the future. As Lenin concluded, "It is a long struggle, requiring a radical remaking both of social technique and of customs. But this struggle will end with the complete triumph of communism."


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