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Vol. 75/No. 16      April 25, 2011

25, 50 and 75 years ago
April 25, 1986
NEW ORLEANS—A measure of justice was finally achieved for residents of this city’s Black community when the city government agreed to pay more than $3 million in an out-of-court settlement of suits charging police brutality and murder.

The lawsuits stemmed from a reign of police terror in November 1980 after a cop was killed over an alleged drug deal in which four Blacks were killed.

According to residents’ descriptions of police behavior the U.S. Constitution had been, in effect, suspended in the city. Police stormed through the community, kicking in doors and searching and dispersing people on the streets. Residents were rounded up and taken down to police headquarters for questioning, beatings, and outright sessions of torture to exact “confessions.”  
April 24, 1961
April 19—The people of Cuba, led by the revolutionary government of Fidel Castro, are staunchly defending their country and repelling U.S.-backed counterrevolutionaries and mercenaries who began invading before dawn Monday, April 17.

Up to now indications are that the invaders have not penetrated beyond the beaches; and the tone of their communiqués, as well as the reports in the unanimously anti-Castro daily press, would indicate that, unless U.S. armed forces intervene directly to save them, the invaders may face defeat.

A defeat of the invasion would seriously weaken Washington’s military and diplomatic prestige throughout the world, particularly in Latin America where social revolution bubbles just beneath the surface.  
April 25, 1936
The tradition of May Day is a tradition of militant mass action. On this day the proletarian prisoners of capitalism assert their right to act as free men and women. Defying the discipline of their bosses, all class-conscious workers lay down their tools; quit their places at the machine; and emerge from factory and workshop to assemble in unified ranks in the streets. The masses who march on May Day herald the time when they will storm the Bastille of capitalism; overthrow their exploiters and oppressors; and construct the socialist society that will usher in a new epoch of peace and progress.

May Day has a special significance for the American working class. Here on May Day, 1886 thousands of workers thronged the streets in a mighty demonstration for the eight-hour day.  
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