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Vol. 74/No. 13      April 5, 2010

Legalize all undocumented!
In videotaped greetings to the massive rally for immigrant rights March 21 in Washington, President Barack Obama pledged to marchers that he will be “your partner as we work to fix our broken immigration system.” But it isn’t “our” system; it’s that of the employers and their government. “Broken” or not, it is designed to serve their interests at the expense of immigrant workers and the working class as a whole.

Just 10 days before, as Obama was meeting with organizers of the rally and promising he was committed to “reform,” U.S. immigration cops raided two restaurants and several homes in Maryland. They arrested 28 workers from Latin America and Bangladesh.

None of the so-called immigration reform bills, not the Schumer-Graham version, which is backed by Obama, nor other variants, like one promoted by Congressman Luis Gutiérrez, aim to put an end to these abuses.

It’s no accident that when production contracted sharply as the capitalist depression unfolded and the bosses slashed jobs that the government stepped up enforcement of immigration laws. But the bosses have no intention of deporting most immigrant workers. Instead they want to heighten insecurity and fear among immigrants to maintain a superexploited layer of the working class and shore up their declining rates of profit. They want to more tightly control the flow of labor to meet their needs. And at the same time foster divisions between immigrant and native-born workers.

Now Congress is considering adoption of a national ID card. The real target is not just immigrants but all working people in the United States. An ID card would allow the bosses and the cops to blacklist workers who refuse to go along with speedup and unsafe working conditions, and go after fighters against racist attacks, immigrants without papers, and other political activists. It’s another step by the capitalists and their government to prepare for the coming resistance to their wage cuts, layoffs, austerity plans, police brutality, and race and sex discrimination.

The Schumer-Graham bill would also further increase the militarization of the U.S.-Mexico border and brand immigrant workers as “criminals” who need to “admit they broke the law.”

Immigrant workers refuse to give up or cower in fear. The more than 100,000 people who rallied in Washington, D.C.—including union contingents and a significant number of Black workers—show that attempts to divide the working class will be countered by working-class solidarity.

No, the system doesn’t need “fixing”; it needs to be dismantled entirely. We need to act on the basis that an injury to one is an injury to all. Legalization for all undocumented workers now! Immediately end deportations and factory immigration audits and raids! No to a national ID card! These are demands that can unite working people and help build a movement strong enough to oust the capitalists from power so we can reorganize society based on recognition of the worth of every human being, regardless of race, national origin, sex, or skin color.
Related articles:
‘No deportations, no raids!’ marchers say
More than 100,000 converge on D.C.
Schumer-Graham bill is attack on workers rights
California farm workers march for legalization
Hundreds at actions buy ‘Workers Power’ book  
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