Capitalism Always Needs Racism: The Floyd-Covid19 Reality


In the grey darkness of factories and fields,
Your word burned up as the fight.
Our hopes and our hatred
You awakened and led after you. …

Although none of us is near qualified to fully appreciate the totality of philosophical output of great thinkers such as Karl Marx and Antonio Gramsci, we can always return to them again and again in the most obedient manner with a view to finding, albeit rarely or accidentally, solutions to the present-day problems and issues.

The current social and political upheaval in the US in the wake of George Floyd’s death has seriously challenged the legitimacy and future of capitalism in a world reeling from the shock of Covid-19.

The other reason for taking a leaf out of great thinkers is the outbreak of this pandemic which, according to The New Left Review, for example, “plays the role of an etching acid that reveals the lineaments–political, economic, social, cultural–of the uneven landscape beneath. …” Coronavirus can perhaps create a new world order.

The current situation, therefore, underscores the need for singing the Leninist Song with a renewed vigor and a new approach to articulating an argument aimed at delineating the contours of a social and economic order that effectively supplants the existing one.

Malcolm X had famously said, “You can’t have capitalism without racism.” George Floyd’s death therefore clearly shows that systemic racism is strongly linked with the capitalist system.

In other words, capitalism always needs racism. It is quite likely that even Karl Marx will himself emerge as a racist in a wider debate. But we’re surely not discussing communism or its founder; nor are we advocating or predicting the return of Marxism, Stalinism, and Maoism in any part of the former communist world or anywhere else.

The need for going back to Russian revolutionary and political theorist Vladimir Lenin however has been necessitated by the Floyd-Covid19 reality which has implicitly set limits to capitalistic competence in the global political and economic affairs.

We’re only emphasizing the need for a deeper analysis of the situation. A scientific method to analyze Floyd’s death in the midst of COVID-19 and months before the US presidential election certainly lies in a set of certain procedures. And, formulating hypotheses largely based on inductive and deductive reasoning could be one of the key tools in this regard. Let’s debate.–Editors

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