The history of the white working class is one full of resistance, collectively and individually, against the rich elite that hold power over all of our lives. From massive armed uprisings like the Battle of Blair Mountain in 1921, to the resistance to coal mining in predominately white rural Appalachia today, white working people have been in conflict with those that uphold predatory economic, political, and social systems.
The history of the white working class is also one filled with collaboration with those same rich elite power holders. White working people have played the role of foot soldiers for the political and economic elite, participating in genocide and the enslavement of other peoples, and overall protectors of the ruling class. White working class participation in state and paramilitary organizations and formations like the Ku Klux Klan, the Minutemen, the U.S. Armed Forces, and the Council of Conservative Citizens has undermined the struggle for freedom among all people. It is with these conflicting histories in mind that we hope to incite a movement amongst white working people that works toward the total liberation of all working people, regardless of skin color, religious background, sexual orientation, gender identity, nationality, or any other division that bosses and politicians have used to fragment movements for social, political, and economic freedom.
The white working class has a rich history of rebellion against tyranny and oppression. The white working class also has a long history of being the footsoldiers of genocide and oppression. In the periods before widespread adoption of white supremacist ideals, the white working class openly rebelled and found common cause alongside slaves, natives, and other people being attacked and exploited. In the wake of such bonds and cross-race unity amongst the lower classes, the rich created a series of laws to favor white workers and servants at the expense of workers and servants of color. The relative privileges that white people have been afforded since that time have kept us protecting the rich while also allowing our communities to remain impoverished and unstable. The white working class will only see real political, economic, and social stability once we abolish our allegiance to white supremacy. We have a duty and an obligation as freedom loving people to stand against the reactionary ideologies of white supremacy and white nationalism that menace communities of color and keep control over white communities.
Private property rights are not the basis of liberty. This false idea has put us in the position we are in. Liberty is based in the rights of all people to not be oppressed, exploited, attacked, or marginalized based off their race, gender, sexual orientation, religious practices, country of origin, or physical or mental abilities. The concept of liberty also affects our relationship to each other and to bosses and others who would exploit us of our labor. Our liberty is deeply rooted in the ability to not be coerced into making poverty wages while someone else amasses wealth on our backs and labor. Our communities, and not parasitic rich people, are entitled to all the wealth that we as workers produce.
The concept of community is central to our goals and intentions, because it separates us from those who work only in defense of their immediate family, property, and possessions. We find that many movements upholding the concept of liberty do so only in an individualist mindset, which undermines the idea that liberty is something that all people are entitled to. We are convinced that the concept of liberty can not truly exist on an individual level alone, and that any class, race, or state construct that enslaves and oppresses anyone among us is a threat to the liberty of all of us.
With that in mind, we use the term "community" intentionally to describe those who share the same material conditions with us; our neighbors, our family members, our friends, the people working alongside us. Most of us are only one bad emergency away from disaster; a sustained layoff, medical emergency, or death in the family could take away everything we've worked for. In those situations, the people we turn to for support often have as little as us, but understand better than anyone how tenuous and important our support network is. That is our community.
Those of us who have the luxury of being able to have a job, sell our labor everyday to make ends meet. For many, we live paycheck to paycheck, our lives filled with precarity and a lack of stability. Most of us are one catastrophe away from losing our homes or means of survival. Still others of us are not able to work or find work. We have been called “white trash” by middle class and upper class people, especially other white folks. We are not professional activists. We are not academics with a text book understanding of poverty or being a worker. We have been cast aside by other more polite white people who view us as nothing but embarrassments. And even while we have been marginalized and then exploited for our labor and treated as expendable garbage, we have been manipulated to be the ones who are the buffer between the rich white elite at the top and poor marginalized folks on the bottom. We refuse to be that buffer class any longer.
Police, prisons, courts, artificial borders, and other systems of social control only exist to serve the rich. The nation-state project came into existence to protect the propertied classes and keep us working people poor and without power. We do not seek to merely replace one set of politicians for another. We know that our answers come from a community level, where every person should be allowed to participate in making the decisions that affect their lives. We believe in community power and community rights over the rights of any government body. We stand with working class people of every country of the world against our common enemy: the rich, and will not allow arbitrary borders or boundaries to prevent us from unifying with other working class people.
Capitalism is an economic system that methodically keeps the vast majority of people in the world impoverished while they labor to enrich a small minority of people. Since the inception of the United States, the propertied classes have always exploited the poor and working class to maintain their power and enrich themselves at our expense. We have nothing to gain by maintaining an allegiance to an economic system that has served to destroy the world and threaten all life as it continues to ravage our communities and natural resources in the name of profit. Our interests will never align with the interests of the rich. We will always have more in common with other working people of all races and backgrounds, than any rich person regardless of whether they share our same color of skin.
Working class people become the fodder for wars that do nothing to protect us or keep us free, and instead only enrich the lives of politicians and rich people. We are funneled from under funded schools based in cities and towns where most job opportunities no longer exist, and pushed into the uniforms of the Armed Forces. We have been deployed to countries all over the world, and sent home in body bags, or as shells of our former selves, just to watch those who sent us to fight and die live in increased luxury. For generations, we have served those in power dutifully, only to see every promise and commitment made to us revoked. Our support of wars that only destroy the lives of working class people from all sides, had kept us poor and powerless. It is now time to turn our guns on our real enemies.
We are not pacifists. We believe in using any and all means at our disposal that do not violate our basic humanity, to gain our freedom and true liberty. We believe in the right of every community to defend itself from those who would exploit or oppress them. We believe in the empowerment of all individuals who wish to participate in the defense of their communities with the knowledge and equipment to do so. It is our duty and obligation to defend our families and communities by all means from those who would profit from our misery and destruction.
We believe in the complete restructuring of society to provide for the survival and liberty of all people. We believe in the end of predatory exploitation of our communities and the creation of a world where no one is without food, shelter, water, or any other means of survival. We believe in a future without tyranny and the political and social control of a small segment of society over the rest of us. We believe in liberty. We believe in equity. We believe in self determination.