12 de diciembre de 2018

Latin America: women's outbreak

Voted for by the plenary of the Latin American Conference, Buenos Aires, 2018

Under capitalist governments of different political signs, whether nationalists or rightist, the women's movement in Latin America has upsurged as an expression of rejection to the brutal economic and social violence suffered by women - which is exacerbated by the crisis and capitalist decomposition.

The mobilization and struggle of women has an enormous importance for the working class. It acquires political projection everywhere, as we see in the mobilization of self-summoned women from Brazil against the fascist Bolsonaro, in response to the advance that aims to preserve and deepen this violence by encouraging the use of fascist methods.

#EleÑao was the channel of a mass mobilization led by women, as happened in the United States in repudiation of Trump's rise. Women have taken into their hands the struggle that neither the trade union centrals nor bourgeois nationalism are willing to undertake. The Brazilian PT not only paved the way for the increasing interference of the evangelical churches and the rise of Bolsonaro during its years of government, but played no role in the promotion and development of the #EleÑao mobilizations.

The struggle of the Brazilian workers is a cause of the working class at a continental level, to contribute to the defeat of this fascist attempt in Brazil that the right-wing sectors intend to impose throughout Latin America.

The oppression of women, the promotion of xenophobia, the ferocious racism that exists in countries like the US, are weapons of capital against the working class as a whole. The awakening of the women's movement is massive, it objectively clashes with the State and it is the expression of a tendency towards rebellion against a decaying capitalism in a continent devastated by the advance of precariousness in labor and social relations.

The demand for basic democratic rights - such as the fight against femicides, the fight for legal abortion, the fight against trafficking for the purpose of sexual and labor exploitation, the increasing awareness about the role of churches and the realization that labor degradation has taken incomes to the levels of welfare - must be inscribed in a strategy for the socialist transformation of society. No version of capital, whether identified with "neoliberalism" or nationalism, can offer nothing more than some skin-deep changes which aim to deviate the underlying claims and to silence even more the majority of impoverished women.

The problem we are facing throughout Latin America is the fight against adjustment and repression against workers. We must also unite efforts to generalize the struggle for the separation of the Church from the State, which is fundamental in this context. Faltering before this fight opens the door for the deepening of experiences such as Nicaragua's or what Brazil is living today with Bolsonaro. That is why we need an organization of women independent from the exploiters' parties and the clergy.

Working women, the most aggrieved

The unemployment rate in the region among women is systematically higher than among men. According to ECLAC, in Latin America 78.1% of the tasks carried out by women are considered of low productivity, "which implies worse wages, lower coverage of social security and less contact with technologies and innovation", according to the organism. The global average of the wage gap between men and women is 23%, while in Latin America, among the most impoverished sectors, it exceeds 40%.

The extension of the working day and the increase of work rhythms, driven by labor and social security reforms, will worsen the living conditions of women workers, which are now the most precarious. The result will be a greater impoverishment, a reinforcement of domestic tasks -such as caring for children and adults in the family-, the loss of labor conquests such as leaves and maternity wards.

The housing situation has become worse over the past decades, not only because the possibility of buying a house in relation to the salary has been considerably reduced, but because the housing quality of the middle classes and the working class are infinitely lower than in the past.

The mobilization of women highlighted the enormous burden of domestic work and the tasks of raising and nurturing. We fight to retrace the domestic slavery of women, which isolates and brutalizes us, to fully incorporate ourselves into the world of production, through the socialization of domestic tasks, and to establish new relationships based on mutual respect, with freedom and without repression.

The Bolivarian axis and policies for women

The bourgeois nationalist governments have a deep estrangement from the demands of women. They turned social assistance into the regular income of thousands of women, establishing as permanent a precarious work modality; and they advanced in regressive labor and social security reforms - whose final ravaging attempt is currently ongoing in political experiences such as those in Nicaragua, Brazil or Argentina.

In Argentina, the women's movement, more or less consciously, finally collided with the result of the alliance between the clergy and the Kirchners' regime that tried to show itself attentive to the demands of women, but preserving the privileges of the churches over the social and state structure. The Catholic and the evangelist churches grow hand in hand with the outsourcing and privatization of assistance by the State.

Legal abortion was not discussed under Kirchnerism to avoid confrontation with the Vatican. The law against violence on women was not finalized under the CFK government nor was it financed. The sex education law was agreed with the church to preserve an obscurantist indoctrination in schools. The civil and commercial code of law established in 2015 claimed the defense of life from the moment of conception. This church empowered by the Kirchner government is the one that exhausted all its resources to avoid the passing of legal abortion. The evangelical growth took place from the neighborhoods and within dozens of institutions or by supplying functions of the State, such as education or health care, and it is not very different from the practices of other churches.

In Uruguay, despite the formal separation of Church and State, the Broad Front’s ties with the churches are one of the obstacles to the access to legal abortion and sex education, by virtue of the figure of conscientious objection and the enormous clerical weight in health and educational institutions.

In Nicaragua, the FSLN government established a strong relationship with the Catholic Church, eliminated the non-punishability of therapeutic abortion and concentrated its electoral campaigns on the figure of a pregnant girl, victim of rape, forced to maternity. Also, this barbarism is part of the record and political action of the nationalist governments in Ecuador, Venezuela, Paraguay, Argentina.

In Ecuador, former President Correa threatened to expel two legislators from his party from their seats because they tried to place the decriminalization of abortion for some reasons in a parliamentary debate.

In Brazil, there has been a setback with the constitutional amendment, from the BBO block (Boots, Bible and Ox) that ended up including the "right to life from conception", attacking not only the right to legalized abortion in the country in cases of health cause and rape, but also to contraception and assisted fertilization.

The crisis of the Catholic Church in Latin America has its maximum expression in the country of Pope Francis and in Chile, due to the cover-up of pedophilia that extends in all countries as an epidemic.

The Church as a tool of social control of capital increased its power throughout Latin America. Only in Brazil, the most Catholic American country, only in a few years went on to have an evangelist population of 10 to 30%. It is the objective result of a strong interrelation between the governments of the PT and the transfer of functions and funds to these cults. The PRB of the Universal Church led by Edir Macedo and the PMDB of Eduardo Cunha, from the Assembly of God, were allies of the PT and integrated the governing alliances until 2014. In 2013, the PT authorized the arrival of Pastor Feliciano as president of the Human Rights Commission of the Chamber of Deputies, a declared homophobic and enemy of women's rights. In the last elections, the evangelical churches were one of the main electoral boosters of the fascist Bolsonaro.

The initiatives of political action of a sector of evangelism come from 30 years ago and have strong political expressions as it happens with the Fujimorist party in Peru, the country where the action against scientific and secular sex education began in 2016, #ConMisHijosNoTeMetas (Do not mess with my children). The project of "Schools without parties" in Brazil is part of this advance.

Religions and churches are organs of bourgeois reaction to defend the exploitation of the working class. We denounce the manipulation that they establish in consonance with the capitalist regime, which denies and attacks the right to motherhood, while it only vindicates it cynically against legal abortion. It is the class struggle of the working masses that will attract all the workers to a conscious and revolutionary social practice, which will be able to free us from the oppression of religion.

For the socialist organization of women throughout Latin America

The capitalism that has destroyed the development of the productive forces has no conditions, much less in the backward countries subjected to the permanent imperialist plunder, to offer a way out.

Only a socialist proposal for women can synthesize the demands and the way out to obtain them. The left must not deviate from this clear definition. "Anti-capitalist feminism" is nothing more than a pose that obviously ends up, without any intention in many cases, putting on some makeup to a criminal social regime.

This is why we fight for the socialist organization of women throughout the continent, allied with the working class, to defeat fascism and capitalist adjustment against the working masses, and to open a horizon of social emancipation.


-This November 25, day of struggle against all forms of violence against women, we will mobilize in each country for the demands of the working women, against social and state violence.

-We launch a great campaign for a new international strike of women on March 8, in the impulse of a true continental day of struggle against fascism and in solidarity with the Brazilian working class. For a strike by the entire working class in defense of women in Brazil and the world. As an instance of preparation, each one of the organizations commits itself to promote an enormous deliberation and organization of women and workers, through assemblies, meetings, etc.

We claim: genuine work; equal salary for equal work; salary equal to the cost of the basic family basket; for public maternity guards in places of study and work; down with the labor and retirement reforms; defense of education and health.

We claim the right to maternity and legal abortion, for secular and scientific sex education and the separation of the Church from the State.

Out imperialism, for the socialist unity of Latin America.

(Voted for by the plenary of the Latin American Conference)