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Grace Carlson

Grace Carlson Reports on Negro Audiences

(February 1941)

From The Militant, Vol. V No. 7, 15 February 1941, p. 3.
Transcribed & marked up by Einde O’ Callaghan for the Encyclopaedia of Trotskyism On-Line (ETOL).

PHILADELPHIA, Feb. 10. – Advertised as the “City of Brotherly Love,” Philadelphia is known among Negro workers as one of the most reactionary and vicious of the Northern cities in the treatment of its Negro citizens.

A number of Negro workers, attending yesterday’s discussion on Negroes and the War, nodded their agreement to my expression on our party’s position that the oppression of the Negro people will not end until the capitalist system of exploitation is abolished through united action of white and colored workers.

The same agreement was expressed by Negro workers of the Newark audience in the meeting held there the previous Sunday. Over half of the questions directed at me in Newark concerned the question of Jim Crowism in the armed forces of the United States. Our program for trade union control of military training was easily understood and apparently readily accepted by the Negro questioners.

The good meetings held in Trenton, Allentown, Reading and Quakertown are testimonials to the patient, devoted and self-sacrificing work of true Bolsheviks. Comrades in these places cannot always see the results of their work as can those in larger centers. The success of the meetings, the general interest and enthusiasm shown by those present, demonstrated that the work of weekly distribution of The Militant, regular and sustained contact work, etc. has won support for the program of Trotskyism among new and wider sections of the working class in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

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