First Published: The Guardian, June 16, 1976.
Transcription, Editing and Markup: Paul Saba
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The Revolutionary Communist Party’s (RCP, formerly RU) backward line on homosexuality has isolated it from the bulk of the progressive movement in Philadelphia.
On May 19, the RCP application for membership in the Philadelphia People’s Fund was rejected by the fund’s selection committee. The Philadelphia People’s Fund is a cooperative, fund-raising and political association of 44 progressive and revolutionary organizations. Membership is limited to groups which meet at least four of the People’s Fund’s five selection criteria. By a vote of 5-1 the selection committee decided that the RCP, applying for its newspaper, The Worker, for the Delaware and Lehigh Valleys, did not meet this requirement.
All six members of the selection committee thought the RCP could not meet Peoples Fund criteria #5, which reads: “The group is working toward a society so organized that every member is afforded basic human rights.” Cited as a reason for this unanimous vote was the following quote from the RCP’s Party Program: “Prostitution, drug addiction, homosexuality and other practices which bourgeois society breeds and the bourgeoisie promotes to degrade and enslave the masses of people, will be abolished. The prostitutes, drug addicts, homosexuals and others who are caught up in these things will be reeducated to become productive members of society, with working-class consciousness. The shame connected with these practices will be taken from the shoulders of these victims and the guilt will be placed where it belongs–on the bourgeoisie.”
Four members also thought that by denying gay people membership in the RCP, the group failed to meet criteria #4: “The group is democratically organized.”