Refoundation caucus is happy to share that the Democratic Socialists of America’s NPC has, with our encouragement, endorsed and called for members’ nationwide participation with the International Women’s Strike (IWS) on March 8th. IWS has been a much-needed actor on the stage of the newly reborn women’s/feminist movement, both as proponent for a militant feminism for the 99% and antagonist to liberal/bourgeois feminism.
As millions of women take to the streets in protest in the U.S. on an unprecedented level, and are drawn into socialist and leftist political circles in particular, we cannot, as revolutionary socialists, afford to fail to engage with this movement. The time has passed when leftists or Marxists could ignore gender-specific and intersectional oppression and exploitation. Our mass movement cannot be built without women and it cannot exist without the recognition that social reproduction is the foundation of global capitalism. We call on all caucus members to engage their locals in actions directly supporting the call for a work stoppage on March 8th as well as to participate in and organize local actions and events around this call. In doing so, we cannot stress enough the importance of the struggles of “working women, women of color, Native women, disabled women, immigrant women, Muslim women, lesbian, queer and trans women.”
THE INTERNATIONAL WOMEN’S STRIKE AS BASE BUILDING
The International Women’s Strike represents an opportunity to develop material networks in line with our caucus’ base building strategy. The IWS local organizing committee in New York City last year showed that March 8th was not simply a one day event, but the basis from which to organize a multi-racial, multi-issue coalition organized around an anti-capitalist feminist banner. March 8th brought together Palestinian activists, Yemeni bodega strikers, Latina immigrants in formal and informal service sectors, nurses, teachers, sex workers and many others, launching a growing city-wide coalition that has been acting in concert in the 365 days since then. In Spain this year, an assembly of 400 organizers representing over 100 organizations voted to go on strike as workers, as women, as consumers and as students. These are the kinds of political alliances and networks of solidarity that can build power for the most exploited and most active sectors of the class as well as for the class as a whole.
By engaging the women who are among the most exploited along intersections of class, race, and gender, we can offer space, support, and strategies for marginalized groups to reclaim power through collective action and organization, both inside and outside of traditional workplaces.
We propose that an explicitly socialist feminist movement is a powerful and necessary bridge to creating a truly democratic and mass socialist movement. Thus, this call is addressed to revolutionary socialists of all genders and gender orientations. If women hold up half the sky, then the burden of its weight must not be so heavy so as to break our backs. We look forward to working together on this exciting prospect.
HOW TO PARTICIPATE
The International Women’s Strike suggests an open array of tactics that leave the door open to one’s decisions and capacity to participate. Actions can include, but are not limited to:
- total strike – stopping work, housework, and/or social roles as caregivers for whole workday
- part-time strike – stopping production /work for 1 or 2 hours
- in case you can’t stop your work, wear red – red clothes, red ribbon, etc.
- demonstrations, pickets, marches
- blocking roads and streets
- sex strike
- shopping strike
- boycott of companies using sexism in their advertisements or approach to workers
- boycott of chosen local misogynists (to be selected by you)
- install auto-reply “out of office” and explain why
- public acts of apostasy from the Catholic church
Want to join and organize a protest?
For information and support please write: firstname.lastname@example.org
And check out the interactive IWS map for local events in your city.