The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

An Attack against Immigrants Is an Attack against All Workers

Jan 1, 2024

Thousands of migrants are turning up on the U.S. southern border every day. Officially, these are the highest numbers of migrants in more than 20 years, four times as many as just four years ago.

Republicans and Democrats have been bemoaning and denouncing these huge numbers, blaming the rising wave of immigrants for everything under the sun. Every day the news media is filled with scare stories, trying to make migrants look like they are invading armies, with their supposed migrant caravans converging on the border.

But these migrants are simply ordinary workers, very poor farmers, and very poor people, who are fleeing disasters of all kinds in their home countries. These include economic collapse, environmental catastrophes, civil wars, and invasions that never end, and overwhelming gang violence.

Then, when they get here, these migrants are attacked, humiliated, imprisoned, and sometimes expelled by the U.S. government.

By carrying out these attacks, the U.S. capitalist class tries to divide the working class against itself. It turns around and uses the vulnerability and desperation of the migrant workers against them. Because they have no legal rights, because they have hanging over their heads the fact that they can be expelled, wage theft is rampant against migrant workers. The capitalists pay migrant workers much lower wages, and they face much worse working conditions. Very often the capitalists get away with wage theft, less than minimum wage, no overtime pay—when the capitalists pay them at all.

The capitalists are increasingly employing unaccompanied minors, immigrants as young as 13 or 14 years old. Instead of going to school, they are working long hours on dangerous jobs for little money, because they have to send money back to their families to keep them from starving.

These are not just attacks against the migrant workers, but on the entire working class, exerting a downward pressure on the wages of all workers.

The U.S. politicians and the news media try to divert U.S. workers’ anger, by making migrants the scapegoats for what the capitalist class itself is responsible for.

This same U.S. capitalist class wages economic and military wars around the world in order to super-exploit the workers and extremely poor farmers in order to increase the U.S. capitalists’ profits and wealth. These are what cause the devastation and poverty, provoking one refugee crisis after another. It is not an accident that some of the biggest numbers of migrants to the U.S. are coming from places like Cuba and Venezuela, whose economies have been devastated by U.S. embargoes for decades, which is one way the U.S. wages economic war. Millions more have come from Central America, where the U.S. instigated civil wars in order to impose its control.

This same U.S. capitalist class wages a relentless economic war against workers in this country in order to increase its profits and wealth, as well as to make the U.S. workers pay for all their barbaric wars. They impose falling living standards on U.S. workers, while the U.S. government carries out continual cuts in vital programs, like education and health care.

Don’t let the capitalists get away with fomenting divisions inside the working class. The migrants are a part of the working class. They are our sisters and brothers. They have already shown tremendous courage, bravery, and self-sacrifice just to be able to make it to this country, as well as to support their families. We must all come together in order to take on our common enemy, the capitalist class.