A vicious wave of extreme anti-abortion legislation is being hammered into law across the country. Alabama’s new law bans all abortions—even in cases of rape and incest. Doctors who provide abortions could be sent to prison for life. Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, Missouri, Indiana, Arkansas, and Utah have also passed bans—many at stages in pregnancy before most women even know they are pregnant. (See this article for details on these laws.)
People need to fiercely protest, struggle against, and truly fight to defeat these monstrous measures that represent a misogynistic assault on the people! People must fight for Abortion on Demand and Without Apology!
A Future Far Worse Than the Horrific Past
This assault on women’s most fundamental right to control their own bodies and lives is not merely about slamming women back to the days when abortion was illegal, when thousands bled to death on motel floors or died of sepsis after botched illegal abortions and millions of women had their lives foreclosed by forced motherhood.
As barbaric as all that was, what we are now facing is far worse.
It is worse because those launching this assault are working to legally enshrine fetuses as “persons.” This means that women and those who assist them in getting an abortion—or even many miscarriages—could be prosecuted and punished for “murder” based on this. This has horrific consequences for further criminalization in the age of mass incarceration, and the qualitative reversals of abortion rights represent a violent reassertion of patriarchal chains with momentum currently escalating towards further attacks on women. All of this backed by a fascist regime in power and courts packed by them!
The movement behind this assault has already blown abortion clinics to pieces, assassinated doctors, and hounded and shamed women on their way into clinics in every state of this country for decades. They already have imprisoned women for miscarriages, for attempting suicide while pregnant, and for desperately attempting to induce their own abortions. This violent reassertion of patriarchal enslavement will be a high-tech Dark Ages—a surveillance-state Handmaid’s Tale of forced motherhood, thousands of years of traditions’ chains put on imperialist steroids, and terror and punishment against any woman or person who resists.
This Fascist Move Is Rooted In an Unreformably Patriarchal System
This assault on abortion is part of a worldwide escalation of misogyny bound up with the resurgence of fascism and religious fanaticism in the face of a rapidly changing world. One of these changes in recent decades has been tectonic clashes over the role of women. Driven by determined struggle of women against their oppression as well as by major economic and geopolitical changes, women are drawn into roles that were for thousands of years foreclosed to them, amidst larger changes in gender roles.
But while all this has strained and stretched some traditional patriarchal norms and forms of oppression, none of this has—or could—put an end to women’s oppression. Male supremacy is a critical dimension of the culture and cohering norms of societies around the world, reinforcing the rule and dominance of underlying exploitative systems, now capitalism-imperialism globally. The oppression of women is interwoven into the fabric of these societies in different ways, a historical development that began with and accompanied the earliest forms of exploitation and oppression in human societies. Ending this oppression can only be done through an actual revolution—here and around the world—that overthrows the system of capitalism-imperialism, and works towards abolishing the class and social divisions this oppression is inextricably linked to, as part of a worldwide process.
In the absence of such a revolution, while reforms have been made, the workings of this system have emboldened and given initiative to reactionary offensives to not just “put women in their place,” but to exact vicious revenge aimed at further controlling and subjugating them, including in the personal and intimate sphere. This is part of a larger fascist program driven by a Christian fascist movement that has been built and supported for decades by the Republicans and which the Democrats have refused to ever call out for what it is. (See the box below on the tremendous harm that has been done by the Democratic Party and those who shill for them.)
The Question Yet to Be Determined: The Reinforcement of the Chains of Enslavement or the Shattering of Them?
Years ago, when the contours of this assault were just beginning to take shape, Bob Avakian, the leader of the revolution and the architect of a whole new framework for emancipation, presciently analyzed that:
“The whole question of the position and role of women in society is more and more acutely posing itself in today’s extreme circumstances…. It is not conceivable that all this will find any resolution other than in the most radical terms…. The question yet to be determined is: will it be a radical reactionary or a radical revolutionary resolution, will it mean the reinforcing of the chains of enslavement or the shattering of the most decisive links in those chains and the opening up of the possibility of realizing the complete elimination of all forms of such enslavement?”
Fight the Power, and Transform the People, for Revolution!
The interests of humanity lie in carrying forward the revolution to emancipate all of humanity, including all forms of gender oppression. Through revolution, it is possible to bring about a world where never again does a woman or girl know what it is to feel shame about her body and sexuality, to feel fear walking alone at night, to have her life curtailed or violently ended simply because she is female, or to be forced to bear a child against her will. It is also possible to bring about a world that puts an end to all oppression based on race, nationality, or language, to put an end to all exploitation everywhere, and to put an end to the catastrophic destruction of the environment.
This is the revolution Bob Avakian (BA) has forged the science and strategy for—and it is the revolution he is actively leading. BA’s new communism represents a radical breakthrough for the emancipation of all of humanity, including theoretical advances in what underlies the oppression of women and what it will take to get beyond it, a different approach than has existed in past communist theory and practice.
But for this revolution to be real—for the huge clash now raging over women’s role to be resolved in a liberating way as opposed to the nightmare we are currently accelerating towards—many more people need to dig into this revolution, spread the word about it, and get organized to make real.
Right now, this includes mounting massive resistance, on a scale unseen for decades (if ever), to these horrendous attacks now coming down and the worse ones surely to come. Again, there is a great need, for people to defiantly fight to defeat these spearheads of horror, these attacks against women, this misogynistic assault on the people!
SOBER UP: The Democrats are Part of the Problem, NOT the Solution!
Relying on the Democrats to stop this misogynist assault on the people is worse than a joke.
It is NOT acceptable (or honest) to tell yourself you are “resisting” this fascist assault, if what that “resistance” means is merely voting for, donating to, and mobilizing others to vote for the Democrats—or to just participate in their elections.
The Democratic Party has been part of the problem from Day 1. They gave up the moral high ground to the anti-woman fanatics when they declared that abortion should be “rare.” They gave up legal and political ground by confirming fascist judges, by refusing to fight hundreds of abortion restrictions, by re-approving the Hyde Amendment every single year since 1976, and more. They have NEVER officially called out Christian fascism for what it is, they have ALWAYS treated the Republicans as legitimate, even as they have increasingly become a ruling class fascist force, now concentrated in the fascist Trump/Pence regime in power.
The Republican Party Is Fascist
The Democratic Party Is Also a Machine of Massive War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity
To the Democratic Party, preserving the stability of the imperialist system it serves is far more important than even the most basic reforms affecting women. It is a ruling class party—a party that represents and fights for the interests and stability of the American capitalist-imperialist empire—and that has real meaning. For all its very real differences with the Republican fascists, these are differences over how to defend and extend this oppressive system. And, its overriding role is to “corral and domesticate dissent” in the service of that system, as Bob Avakian has put it.
In contrast to both the fascist ruling class party (the Republicans) and their Democratic ruling class rivals, it is necessary for the masses of people to mobilize fierce and growing resistance outside the killing confines of this system’s elections and Democratic Party politics. Most fundamentally, it is necessary to do this in a way that contributes to—and while also taking up in its own right—getting organized for an actual revolution!
Sunsara Taylor is a writer for revcom.us, initiator of the Abortion Rights Freedom Rides in 2013 and 2014, and a co-initiator of RefuseFascism. She has written on the rise of theocracy, wars and repression in the U.S., led in building resistance to these crimes, and contributed to the movement for revolution to put an end to all this. She takes as her foundation the new synthesis on revolution and communism developed by Bob Avakian. Currently, she is part of the National Get Organized for an ACTUAL Revolution Tour, going around the U.S. spreading revolution and organizing people into the movement for an actual revolution.