Excerpts from the writings of George Jackson
There is a commemorative event at East Side Arts Cultural Center today, 4:30-8 PM). Listen to Wanda's Picks August 21, 2009 & August 17, 2011: wandaspicks.asmnetwork.org
August 21, 2011 (compiled by Kiilu Nyasha)
Today, August 21, 2011, marks the 40th anniversary of the assassination of our beloved Comrade George Lester Jackson. Here are more quotes from his two books, the first was the bestseller, Soledad Brother: the Prison Letters of George Jackson and Blood In My Eye, published after his death. It’s remarkable that these statements are as pertinent today as they were 40 years ago, perhaps more so.
“The blanket indictment of the white [so-called] race has done nothing but perplex us, inhibit us. The theory that all whites are the immediate enemy and all blacks our brothers (making them loyal) is silly and indicative of a lazy mind (to be generous, since it could be a fascist plot). It doesn’t explain the black pig; there were six on the Hampton-Clark kill. It doesn’t explain the black paratroopers (just more pigs) who put down the great Detroit riot, and it doesn’t explain the pseudo-bourgeois who can be found almost everywhere in the halls of government working for white supremacy, fascism and capitalism” (Soledad Brother p221-222)
(From Blood in My Eye, p 4-5)
“You must teach that socialism-communalism is as old as man; that its principles formed the basis of mostly all the East African cultures (there was no word to denote possession in the original East African tongues). The only independent African societies today are socialistic. Those which allowed capitalism to remain are still neo-colonies. Any black who would defend an African military dictatorship is as much a fascist as Hoover.
“….there are only two ways by which societies can ever be governed and organized for production of their needs: the various types of totalitarian methods represented by assorted capitalist and fascist arrangements, and the egalitarian method. Egalitarianism is people’s government and people’s government and economics is socialism, dialectical and materialist. How else can societies be governed? There must be hierarchies or the elimination of hierarchies.”
"All political parties, as things stand, will support the power complex. Any individual elected will either be a supporter of the established politics -- or an 'individual.' What would help us, in fact, is to allow as many right-wing elements as possible to assume 'political' power. ...The fascists already have power. The point is that some way must be found to expose them and combat them. An electoral choice of ten different fascists is like choosing which way one wishes to die. The holder of so-called high public office is always merely an extension of the hated ruling corporate class. It is to our benefit that this person be openly hostile, despotic, unreasoning. [my emphasis] We are not living in a nation where left-wing parties hold eighty out of two hundred seats in a congressional body...This is a huge nation dominated by the most reactionary and violent ruling class in the history of the world, where the majority of the people just simply cannot understand that they are existing on the misery and discomfort of the world." (Blood In My Eye p 71-72)
“The corporative state allows for no genuinely free political opposition. They only allow meaningless gatherings where they can pant more spies than participants. They feel secure in their ability to mold the opinion of a people interested only in wages. However, real revolutionary activity will draw panic-stricken gunfire. Or heart attacks.
“So what is to be done after a revolution has failed? After our enemies have created a conservative mass society based on meaningless electoral politics, spectator sports, and a 3 percent annual rise in purchasing power strictly regulated to negate itself with a corresponding rise in the cost of living. …What can we do with a people who have gone through he authoritarian process and come out sick to the core!!!
“Our overall task is to separate the people from the hated state. They must be made to realize that the interests of the state and the ruling class are one and the same. They must be taught to realize that the present political regime exists only to balance the productive forces within the society in favor of the ruling class. It is at the ruling class and the governing elites, including those of labor, that we must aim our bolts.”
(Blood in My Eye, p 174-5).
"Black capitalism, black against itself. The silliest contradiction in a long train of spineless, mindless contradictions. Another painless, ultimate remedy: be a better fascist than the fascist. Bill Cosby, acting out the establishment agent -- what message was this soul brother conveying to our children? I Spy [the sixties TV program where he played a CIA agent's subordinate] was certainly programmed to a child's mentality. This running dog in the company of a fascist with a cause, a flunky's flunky, was transmitting the credo of the slave to our youth, the mod version of the old house nigger. We can never learn to trust as long as we have them. They are as much a part of the repression, more even than the real live rat-informer-pig. Aren't they telling our kids that it is romantic to be a running dog? The kids are so hungry to see the black male do some shooting and throw some hands that they can't help themselves from identifying with the quislings. So first they turn us against ourselves, precluding all possibility of trust, then fascism takes any latent divisible forces and develops them into divisions in fact: racism, nationalism, religions."
“So what’s happening with a guy who says he is for us but not against the government? Or one who says he’s for us and against all whites – except the ones who may kick his ass? There is a great deal of cowardice and treachery and confusion here. The black bourgeoisie (pseudo-bourgeoisie), the right reverends, the militant opportunists, have left us in a quandary, rendered us impotent. How ridiculous we must seem to the rest of the black world when we beg the government to investigate their own protective agencies. Aren’t the wild hip-shooting pigs loose among us to protect the property rights of the people who formed the government? “
"International capitalism cannot be destroyed without the extremes of struggle. The entire colonial world is watching the blacks inside the U.S., wondering and waiting for us to come to our senses. Their problems and struggles with the Amerikan monster are much more difficult than they would be if we actively aided them. We are on the inside. We are the only ones (besides the very small white minority left) who can get at the monster's heart without subjecting the world to nuclear fire. We have a momentous historical role to act out if we will. The whole world for all time in the future will love us and remember us as the righteous people who made it possible for the world to live on.”
“The capitalist Eden fits my description of hell. To destroy it will require cooperation and communication between our related parts; communion between colony and colony, nation and nation. The common bond will be the desire to humble the oppressor, the need to destroy capitalist man and his terrible, ugly machine. If there were any differences between us in the black colony and the peoples of other colonies across the country, around the world, we should be willing to forget them in the desperate need for coordination against Amerikan fascism.
“We must accept the spirit of the true internationalism called for by Comrade Che Guevara….We need allies, we have a powerful enemy who cannot be defeated without an allied effort! The enemy at present is the capitalist system and its supporters. Our prime interest is to destroy them. Anyone else with this same interest must be embraced, we must work with, beside, through, over, under anyone, regardless of his or her external physical features, whose aim is the same as ours in this. Capitalism must be destroyed, and after it is destroyed, if we find we still have problems, we’ll work them out. That is the nature of life, struggle, permanent revolution; that is the situation we were born into. There are other peoples on this earth. In denying their existence and turning inward in our misery and accepting any form of racism we are taking on the characteristic of our enemy. We are resigning ourselves to defeat. For in forming a conspiracy aimed at the destruction of the system that holds us all in the throes of a desperate insecurity we must have coordinating elements connecting us and our moves to the moves of the other colonies, the African colonies, those in Asia and Latin Amerika, in Appalachia and the south-western bean fields.
“We must establish a true internationalism with other anticolonial peoples. Then we will be on the road of the true revolutionary. Only then can we expect to seize the power that is rightfully ours, the power to control the circumstances of our day-to-day lives.
“The fascist must expand to live. Consequently, he had pushed his frontiers to the farthest lands and peoples. This is an aspect of his being, an ungovernable compulsion. This perverted mechanical monster suffers from a disease that forces him to build ugly things and destroy beauty wherever he finds it.
“We must fall on our enemies, the enemies of all righteousness, with a ruthless relentless will to win! History sweeps on, we must not let it escape our influence this time!!!!”
(Soledad Brother: The Prison Letters of George Jackson, p 202-204, Bantam Ed., pub. 10/70)