29 June 2020

Haley Pessin, in a speech to supporters of the NYC Amazon unionisation drive: “In a just society, we would understand that people like Jeff Bezos, and people like the bosses who are making us go in so that they can make a profit — those are the real looters, and those are the real criminals. They don’t arrest people like Jeff Bezos who is $44 billion dollars richer during the pandemic while 45 million people remain unemployed in the U.S. No, instead, the police target people like George Floyd for allegedly forging a $20 bill. They targeted Eric Garner for selling loose cigarettes. They target the poor, and black people, and when they kill us they are protected by a legal system that almost never holds the police accountable unless we make them. This is not a mistake, and it’s not a matter of a few bad apples. Racism has been central to the way that the cops have operated since the beginning. They are the descendants of slave patrols and of strikebreakers, and they continue to function in this society to maintain the wealth of a very few at the top. They don’t care about our lives, they only care about one thing, and that’s their profits. And there is only one group of people with the power to get their knees off our necks, and that is us. Not alone, but as workers, because no matter how they try to treat us as disposable, without us, they would have nothing.”