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End attacks on public employees, stand up for workers rights at April 4 protests

By Fight Back! Editors |
April 2, 2011
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March 12 protest against attacks on public workers. Wisconsin workers plan to jo
March 12 protest against attacks on public workers. Wisconsin workers plan to join April 4 demonstrations. (Fight Back! News/Staff)

April 4 is a day to stand up and be counted. We urge all readers of Fight Back! to join the nationwide protests that are set for April 4, the anniversary of the assassination of the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. Say no to the attacks on public employees and on the rights of working people.

As things stand, the April 4 protests, which are being promoted by unions affiliated with the AFL-CIO and others, look to be a massive mobilization of the labor movement and its allies. Hundreds of thousands will join rallies and marches to stand in solidarity with the workers of Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio and other states that are on the front lines of the fight to resist union busting efforts.

The stakes are incredibly high. The steady decline of trade unions in United States has made public-sector worker unions a key pillar of the labor movement overall. The attacks by right-wing politicians on unions of public employees have the potential to place a half million workers or more outside the ranks of organized labor. If this is allowed to happen, it will be a serious setback for all working people.

The good news is many workers have decided that these attacks need to be combated. The heroic resistance shown by workers, students and members of the community in Wisconsin are an example to all of us. To this day, the attempts by Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker to strip public worker unions of their right to representation have been blocked. This is not because of politicians or judges; it is because working people took to the streets and changed the political landscape.

The rich and powerful are waging an offensive against working people. The big capitalists are taking advantage of the ongoing economic crisis to push working and oppressed people into deeper poverty. The only thing they care about is themselves and their money.

April 4 is a chance for all of us to say enough is enough. Dr. King’s legacy is a legacy of struggle. King went to Memphis, Tennessee in 1968 to stand with sanitation workers who were on strike to improve their lives. His life was ended by an assassin’s bullet. The response to his murder in African American communities across the country was immediate and clear - oppression and inequality must go.

We need to have that same will to fight and determination to win in our struggles today. We are facing an enemy that is well organized and obviously well funded. The wealthy will not give us a moment of peace. They want to push us down. We cannot allow this to continue.

On a final note, the editors of Fight Back! urge readers to take the ‘Pledge to resist FBI and Grand Jury repression’ out at the April 4 protests. Illinois U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald wants to put trade union, anti war and international solidarity activists in jail. This is an attack on everyone’s right to speak out against injustice.

Do the right thing on April 4. Join the protests. Stand up for the rights of working people!