In the last month, a reactionary Toronto alderman and agent provocateur has been organizing to quell the resistance of the progressive Canadian people and the East Indian community to state-organized racist attacks on the people. In the last month, this reactionary alderman has organized a public meeting for the purpose of blaming the East Indian community for the escalation of racist attacks. He has attacked progressive Canadian people who have been popularizing the November 6 demonstration and rally against state-organized racist attacks. He has worked closely with the police to organize a detachment of these state goons to hunt down these progressive people and to try to stop the propaganda for the correct line of Blame the Rich and Not the People for Racist Attacks! and Self-Defence Is the Only Way!
The activity of this reactionary alderman and the police in the East End of Toronto has shown clearly the correctness of the line that it is the rich and their state, and not the people, who are responsible for racist attacks.
First, this reactionary alderman organized a meeting several weeks ago in order to suppress the growing opposition in the East Indian community against state-organized racist attacks. The agenda of the meeting was “the problem of the temple”. The meeting was organized to give a forum to the police, the NDP, the alderman, etc. As well, various representatives of the temple gave presentations. The alderman, the police and others used the forum to blame the East Indians as being the cause of the problem and the source of racist attacks on the community. The progressive people who came to the meeting denounced this police activity, exposed the role of the state in organizing these racist attacks. They raised the slogan Self-Defence Is the Only Way! This struck a sharp blow to the plans of the state, and the reactionaries at once began to fall all over themselves proclaiming themselves to be “anti-racist”, and accused the “ignorant” Canadian people of being the cause of the problem. Under this vicious lie, these reactionaries spouted their theories that self-defence was wrong, and that the Gurdwara should instead organize tea parties to educate the “ignorant” Canadian people. Even the police proclaimed that they were interested in sorting out the problem of racist attacks. The alderman and the police told the people that they should rely on the police to find a solution to the racist attacks.
The demagogy of these reactionaries did not fool the people and the vast majority of the people, who genuinely opposed the racist attacks, were extremely receptive to the line of Self-Defence Is the Only Way! With these developments, every one of the political tricksters claimed not to understand the comrades’ language. The alderman claimed he never heard of the Canadian state. The police began drawing pictures of the progressive people, taking notes on them, etc. The state’s plans to use this meeting to get the East Indian community and the progressive Canadian people to rely on the state and to give up the line that Self-Defence Is the Only Way! were thwarted and its meeting ended in a shambles.
Two weeks after this meeting, the “anti-racism” of the alderman was thoroughly exposed. Right in the heart of the community where the racist attacks are most concentrated, this man began tearing down posters advertising the November 6 demonstration and rally. He became particularly hysterical at one of the main slogans for the demonstration: Blame the Rich and Not the People for Racist Attacks! When he was prevented from tearing down these posters, he ran off screaming for the police, and by late that evening he had floated stories on television and in the bourgeois press that he had been assaulted by a woman with a paint brush and that he was pressing assault charges. But these stories only backfired and when the progressive people returned to the community the next evening, they found: 1) enthusiastic support for anyone who hit this alderman no matter what the reason, and 2) anger, that this reactionary and agent provocateur was attacking those people who were most active in practically organizing against racist attacks.
On Monday, October 31, two people were arrested for postering for the November 6 demonstration and rally. Although postering is a summary charge, the people were taken to the station, interrogated for several hours and harassed about their immigration status.
The next day, two more people were arrested. They were assaulted by the police during their arrest and attempts were made by the police to charge them with assaulting the reactionary alderman.
In both these cases, the role of the state in organizing the racist attacks and in harassing and attacking the people who genuinely oppose the racist attacks was clearly revealed.
1. One of those arrested who is East Indian was detained for several hours simply because he was East Indian and “... liable to be an illegal immigrant”.
2. The police threatened to detain the people for a long period of time, harassed them continually, assaulted them and illegally detained them.
3. A large part of the entire police division was mobilized for the sole purpose of attacking the people who were postering. The police were spread throughout the area looking for the posterers. Four police cars actually took part in the arrest, and even after the people were taken to the police station, other police were still phoning in to report that “we haven’t found them yet”, only to be told that the posterers had already been arrested. Moreover, several phone calls were made to the reactionary alderman to report that “we got the two broads who hit you with the paint brush” so that he could come down and “identify” them. Similarly, when another person went to the station to get the posterers he was told that they were not there and that they had not even been picked up. When he returned with the actual police car number and stated that they were in fact there, the posterers were suddenly “discovered” upstairs being interrogated.
4. In the Monday evening arrests, a crowd of youth began to gather after the posterers had been put in the police car and began denouncing the police attack on the genuine anti-racist fighters. The police immediately called for reinforcements and hurriedly left the scene.
All these events illustrate clearly that the central issue for the people as far as the racist attacks are concerned is that the racist attacks are state-organized. The state can mobilize a whole division of police to arrest posterers, yet the police get lost when trying to find an East Indian or West Indian house after the racists attack it. Similarly, the police harass, arrest, assault and attack the genuine opponents of the racists who take up self-defence, because this self-defence is necessarily directed against the perpetrators of the attacks, the rich and their state.
The reactionary bourgeoisie becomes hysterical when it sees the correct line on the question of racist attacks being advanced and actually implemented in the communities. The arrests of comrades and progressive people in Toronto cannot stop a correct line because it is irresistible. It reflects the deep sentiment of the people. The correct line is Blame the Rich and Not the People for Racist Attacks! That the Canadian people are consciously organizing to defend their basic interests by relying on their own efforts spells disaster for the rich in their plans to split the Canadian people on the basis of race and thus prepare conditions for further attacks on the entire Canadian working class and people.
On November 6,1977, the Joint Committee of EIDC, WIPO and CPDC is organizing a demonstration and rally against state-organized attacks on immigrants. The demonstration will begin at 2:00 p.m. in front of Toronto City Hall. The main speaker at the rally afterwards will be Comrade Hardial Bains, Chairman of CPC(M-L). Anyone who has the sentiment to oppose the state-organized racist attacks on the people is invited to participate in the demonstration and rally.
BLAME THE RICH AND NOT THE PEOPLE FOR RACIST ATTACKS!
DOWN WITH THE STATE-ORGANIZED RACIST ATTACKS ON THE PEOPLE!
FIGHT RACIST ATTACKS THROUGH REVOLUTIONARY MASS STRUGGLES!
SELF-DEFENCE IS THE ONLY WAY!
(People’s Canada Daily News, Volume 7 No. 263, November 3, 1977)