Encyclopedia of Anti-Revisionism On-Line

October League (M-L)

Chicano Liberation

Resolution of OL’s Third Congress


The Marxist programme, based on deductions from the theory, defines the aim of the movement of the rising class, in the present case, the proletariat, during a certain period in the development of capitalism or during the whole of the capitalist period (the minimum and maximum program).[1]

Our program for Chicano liberation is to establish socialism under the dictatorship of the proletariat, regional autonomy for the Chicano people in the Southwest United States and in other areas of high concentration, and full democratic rights.

The October League’s strategic objective for Chicano liberation is socialist revolution. Freedom from exploitation and national oppression for the Chicano people can only be accomplished under the dictatorship of the proletariat which will abolish class exploitation thus removing the basis for national oppression, and will outlaw every form of national discrimination.

We reject the view of the CPUSA and other reformists who claim that the Chicano people can be liberated without the complete destruction of the imperialist system–without which the democratization of the Southwest United States and the Chicano people’s freedom is impossible.


In order to implement full democratic rights for the Chicano people under socialism, it will be necessary to implement a policy of regional autonomy for the Chicano people in the Southwest and other areas of greatest concentration.

Regional autonomy is the means of assuring democratic rights of an oppressed national minority under socialism. It’s a form which guarantees a national minority people a way to exercise political power (within general policies of the proletarian state) over decisions which affect them. Lenin described this: “The Party demands broad regional autonomy, the abolition of supervision from above, the abolition of a compulsory, official language, and the firing of the boundaries of the self-governing and autonomous regions in accordance with the economic and social condition, the national composition of the population, and so forth, as assessed by the local population itself .. . “The Party demands that a fundamental law be embodied in the constitution annulling all privileges enjoyed by any one nation and all infringements of the rights of national minorities.”[2]

Applied to the Chicano people, this would guarantee control over local economic, social and political decisions, with the power of the state backing them up. Under regional autonomy, decisions regarding schools, policing, banking, economic policy, etc., would be determined by the Chicano people within the boundaries of the self-governing and autonomous regions ... as assessed by the local population. in the Southwest U.S. and other areas of greatest concentration.

Regional autonomy is a working class policy aimed at creating the conditions tor uniting the different nationalities in the U.S. Regional autonomy is distinct from cultural autonomy which would artificially or metaphysically divide the Chicano people from their class allies of other nationalities. Marxism-Leninism demands concrete solutions and the unity of the working class; it rejects such metaphysical concepts as “the nation of a new type” or a “the nation of Aztlan”.

The view that regional autonomy in the form of “islands of socialism” can be built without the rest of the United States undergoing socialist revolution is also incorrect. “Electoral control over local politics” under imperialism is a cover to gloss over the class contradictions among the Chicano people, and leads to further development of the Chicano bourgeoisie as the exploiter of the Chicano masses.

Socialist policy as regarding the Chicano question is also to fully honor and implement democratic rights “guaranteed” by past treaties between the governments of the United States and Mexico, and to uphold the sovereignty of the Mexican nation.


Provisions of the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo, which officially ended the Mexican-American War, and guaranteed Mexican rights, have never been recognized by the government of the United States. In addition, the sovereignty of Mexico has been consistently trampled by the United States and the Soviet Union through CIA and KGB subversion, invasion of Mexican fishing waters, and political and economic penetration. Some organizations have posed “no border” or an “open border” as the solution to the fascistic policy of mass deportations of millions of undocumented Mexican workers. In reality this would open Mexico up even more to imperialist penetration and dominance. The purpose of the border is to protect Mexico’s sovereignty and to show that the U.S. has no claims on Mexican territory. The October League stands for the free movement of Mexican people across the border, whether it be in search of work or for any other valid reason.

While we recognize that proletarian power is the only guarantee of full democratic rights for oppressed national minorities, we also take up the demands of the Chicano people for reforms under capitalism. We stand firmly opposed to both the revisionists in the CPUSA who fight only for reforms and to the ultra-“leftists” who refuse to take up the day-to-day struggles of Chicanos against national oppression and for democratic rights.

Beginning with the westward expansion and the annexation of Mexico by the U.S. capitalist class, the imperialists have brutally trampled on the democratic rights of the Mexican and Chicano people. This national oppression is shown today by extremely low wages and high unemployment, dilapidated housing in urban barrios and rural colonias, bad schools leading to high dropout rates, almost nonexistent medical care, severe police repression, mass deportations and other conditions associated with poverty and discrimination.

Our task is to take up the struggle of the Chicano people against these oppressive conditions, linking the struggle for reforms to the need for revolution. We must build unity between the class struggle for socialism and the Chicano people’s struggle for democratic rights.

We fight for democratic rights in a revolutionary way in order to build and strengthen the united front of the Chicano people against imperialism. We must build a movement that identifies imperialism, not Anglo-Americans, as the source of Chicano people’s oppression. We must win workers of all nationalities to take up the Chicano struggle as their own. Only by promoting proletarian internationalism and defeating great nation chauvinism can we remove the basis for narrow nationalism within the Chicano movement.

We fight for democratic rights in order to build proletarian leadership of the Chicano united front. Because the great majority of Chicano people are workers, and because in this era the national question has become one of overthrowing imperialism, their struggle is in essence a class struggle. Their demands are the demands of the great majority of working people who have created the great wealth of this country. Carried out correctly under proletarian leadership, the day-to-day struggle for these demands builds up the unity and fighting capacity of the working class and its allies and brings us closer to revolution.


[1] J.V. Stalin, Political Strategy and Tasks of Russian Communists

[2] V.I. Lenin, The Seventh (April) All-Russia Conference of the RSDLP(B)