Why don’t we raise the RBG flag? The answer, quite simply, is because we raise the Red Flag of Revolution. The red, black and green flag designed by Marcus Garvey has been popularly adopted to represent Black nationalism in Amerika. People may ask, “Don’t you believe Black people have been constituted as a nation within the U.S.?”
Yes, we do, specifically in the “Black Belt” South under the post-slavery conditions of neo-feudalism (share-cropping) and “Jim Crow” segregation. We also believe that the U.S. was constituted as a “white” nation under the conditions of colonization, genocide, slavery and racial segregation. But as Huey P. Newton pointed out, the U.S. has ceased to a nation and has become a globe-reaching empire, which makes it impossible for other nations to have an independent existence.
If the Black (New Afrikan) Nation can no longer meet the criteria to be a nation, and national independence is precluded by Empire’s global domination, then what is the path to Black liberation? It is World Proletarian Socialist Revolution, which will create a world without borders and nation states, based upon revolutionary people’s power and the leadership of the world proletariat.
The World has become too small for independent nation states, and too advanced for capitalist-imperialism and private ownership of the means of production. Capitalism has made itself obsolete, and it needs to be swept aside in the interests of humanity.
Nations and nationalism belong to a specific time period in history, the period of rising capitalism and throwing off the yoke of feudal oppression. As Stalin pointed out, “The national question is essentially a peasant question.” The peasant’s demand for land and liberation from feudal oppression is championed by the rising bourgeoisie who establish their borders and claim a monopoly on the use of force within them, and the exclusive right to exploit the natural resources and labor power of the proletarians within those borders, as well as the right to levy, enact laws and conscript soldiers.
But as imperialism develops, the national bourgeoisie are superseded by and subordinated to the imperialist bourgeoisie, which increasingly becomes transnational. Formerly independent nation states are converted to junior partners in global imperialism or dependent neo-colonial puppet regimes. The path to liberation thus switches from national liberation to overthrowing Empire and creating global revolutionary intercommunalism as a stepping stone to global classless society.
There cannot be a “Black revolution,” simply because there is only one monopoly ruling class oppressing everyone on the planet, and it is in everybody’s interest to overthrow them and seize control over the means of production from them. The world proletariat is black, brown and white, in essence, it has no nationality, no gender. The proletariat is all of us who must sell our labor power to the capitalists for less than it is worth. It is also the “Last Class in History,” because it is its historic destiny to liberate itself by ending the division of society into exploiting and exploited classes.
The proletariat’s flag is red, for revolution, and for the blood of slaves, serfs and workers shed over centuries in struggle against oppression and for liberation. Realizing that nationalism is now a dead end, why would we want to promote it? Revolution belongs to the people – ALL THE PEOPLE – who dare to be free. As Malcolm X put it;
“I believe that there will be ultimately be a clash between the oppressed and those who do the oppressing. I believe that there will be a clash between those who want freedom, justice and equality for everyone and those who want to continue the system of exploitation. I believe that there will be that kind of clash, but I don’t think it will be based on the color of the skin…”
Malcolm X also said: “You can’t operate a capitalistic system unless you are vulturistic; you have to have someone else’s blood to suck to be a capitalist. You show me a capitalist, I’ll show you a bloodsucker… It is impossible for capitalism to survive, primarily because the system of capitalism needs some blood to suck. Capitalism used to be like an eagle, but now it’s more like a vulture. It used to be strong enough to go and suck anybody’s blood whether they were strong or not. But now it has become more cowardly, like the vulture, and it can only suck the blood of the helpless. As the nations of the world free themselves, the capitalism has less victims, less to suck, and it becomes weaker and weaker. It’s only a matter of time in my opinion before it will collapse completely.”
ALL POWER TO THE PEOPLE!