On May 5, three anti-Ku Klux Klan activists--Labor Coordinator of the Partisan Defence Committee Gene Herson, Refuse & Resist! supporter Jeffrey Lyons and a young black worker named Dennis Glass--stand trial for the "crime" of protesting against racist Klan terror. They face from one to two years in jail on trumped-up charges of assault and battery stemming from a successful demonstration that turned back a potentially lethal assault by Klan terrorists. This blow against the KKK's racist genocidal designs was a victory for all working people, blacks and minorities.
On June 29, 1996 in Chicago's Daley Plaza, thugs from the Arkansas "Knights of the Ku Klux Klan," armed with bolt-studded shields and heavy flagpoles wielded as lances, marched provocatively towards the demonstration of over 100 anti-fascist protesters. After the protesters successfully defended themselves and stopped these lynch-rope terrorists, the Chicago police intervened to return the Klan's weapons to them and then turned to exact revenge against the anti-Klan terrorists.
It is no surprise that the police feel a common bond with the terrorists in white sheets. On March 4, a small army of state police and security guards rampaged through Chicago's Cabrini-Green housing project and shot a young mother of four at point-blank range who was protesting against police brutality. Both the Klan and the police engage in beating and killing poor blacks and other minorities, and when the Chicago police saw the Klan hit the pavement, they retaliated.
The assaults on unions, welfare programs and other social programs are being enforced through increased state repression aimed at quashing any would-be protest. A victory for the anti-Klan Three would be a critical victory for the right to protest injustice and oppression.
Police violence isn't random; instead, it serves to prop up a decaying profit system. It enforces racist attacks on welfare, immigrants, unions and affirmative action--attacks which feed rising Klan terror. The fascist nightriders must be stopped and what are necessary to do it are mass mobilizations of all the Klan's intended victims. The Spartacus Youth Club, a revolutionary Marxist youth organization, has initiated a united-front speakout around the slogan "Drop All Charges Against the Chicago Anti-Klan Three" for April 24, at 12 noon, outside the Science Center. The speak-out has been endorsed by the Black Students Association, the Harvard College Democrats and professors Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Cornel West.
Defense of the Anti-Klan Three is a vital necessity for the labor movement and all opponents of racist terror. If the police get away with framing up these three fighters against Klan terror, it will further embolden the nightriding fascists in their genocidal aim of a "racially pure" America. It is urgent for all anti-racist fighters to come to the defense of the Anti-Klan Three. To protest this deadly frame-up, join us at the speakout or contact the SYC at (617) 666-9453. Drop all charges against the Anti-Klan Three! --Michael Grant, member of the Spartacus Youth Club