Translation: Manifesto of the Socialist Youth Union of the Communist Party of Brazil
1. Sitting in schools and universities, in the daily work of factories and offices, in the periphery of cities, in the hard work of plowing the land, in the city squares, streets, stages, barracks, fields, beaches and festivals we say: Presente!
2. We are the millions of faces that bring youth to Brazil. We are socialists because we are young and we embrace the future and the pursuit of happiness – desires that are daily frustrated in this capitalist society that has no perspective and only offers us disillusionment and exploitation.
3. Here in Brazil we are discriminated against and thrown to the sidelines. We are saddened by not being able to take advantage of the best of our creativity and energy in the immense line of unemployed people. The “NO HIRING” sign is the means for our exclusion and marginalization. We are the millions who do not have access to universities or any form of vocational education. Illiteracy still affects many of us. In schools and universities we find elitist, backward and conservative education, without investments and democracy.
4. Our entire history and culture expressed in countless prose and verses, in books and in the arts, which constitute a fantastic cultural heritage, including those already staged in cinema, theater and television, are not accessible to everyone. In Brazil, the monopoly of the media remains, which does not allow the expression of popular culture and the propagation of ideas and plurality.
5. For us, they offer individualism, discrimination and social exclusion. Drug use, in addition to being treated as a crime, is only remembered on TV news, with the absurd absence of a minimum state policy capable of treating the problem as a public health issue, which ends up only enriching capitalists and drug traffickers.
6. Our cities do not offer us public spaces for sports and leisure, we do not have access to urban mobility and we still face serious housing problems. In the peripheries of cities there is a lack of public safety and the realization of other fundamental rights for our social development. Insecurity takes over the great centers. This environment does not interest us, does not satisfy us, we want cities capable of including everyone without discrimination based on belief, color, gender and social class.
7. We want access to quality and universal public healthcare. Only in this way will we fight the epidemics and diseases that affect the most needy part of our people. We do not want to enrich the pharmaceutical industry or the oligopoly of private health plans. It is necessary to invest in preventive healthcare and the quality of life.
8. Our sexuality needs to be respected, free from dogma and conservative views. We are not offered sex education in schools and we have no access to contraceptive methods. There are thousands of young people who face a pregnancy without any protection and monitoring. Because it is treated as a crime and not as a public health problem, abortion in backyard clinics ends up being the only alternative to interrupt an early and unwanted pregnancy. Many young people are victims of AIDS, due to a lack of information and means of prevention. In Brazil, sexuality is trivialized and reproduces machismo and homophobia.
9. Our environment is a victim of capitalist insanity that degrades, pollutes and destroys it. The Brazil of the future depends on the balance between development and the preservation of our natural resources.
10. Those in power claim that we live in a democracy because we have elections. They hide that the rules of this system are only for those who have monetary power.
11. This democracy discriminates against us, does not listen to us and does not help us. We are considered the future and, in the present, we do not have room to express our opinion, participate and decide. Even this false democracy is increasingly attacked and limited.
12. Violence haunts us all the time. Many of our own youth hurt or kill themselves in gang disputes, or are beaten by their own parents.
13. Others receive a stray bullet or are victims of assault or stalking. In capitalism we have no peace.
14. Our freedom is heavily guarded and repressed. The elites and the media discriminate against blacks, treating them as “modern” slaves and distorting their history. Women do not have equal rights and do not understand their reality and differences. Homosexuality is treated as a disease and not as a sexual orientation. Prejudice and discrimination are the hallmarks of our time.
15. Despite our resourceful people and our rich and vast territory, our people and our nation lived for centuries on its knees. Brazil still needs to advance in its independence from imperialist countries, especially the United States.
16. What drives the so-called globalization is the pursuit of profit, the desire to end the sovereignty of countries, exploit their workers, destroy their cultures and annex their wealth. Driven in this direction in decades of submission, our Brazil saw its flag trampled, its independence destroyed, and its future compromised.
17. Our history is marked by backwardness and extreme subordination. Portugal, England and the United States over time promoted slavery, monoculture farming, industrial backwardness, dependent development and, more recently, the attempt to de-industrialize and transform ours into a trinket market.
18. But they were not the only ones responsible for this sad story and the current course. The landowners, the parasites of our country, have always maintained this course through violence and political oligarchy.
19. Most of the so-called Brazilian bourgeoisie, incompetent and adepts of imperialism, has always subordinated itself to the interests of their masters and their external subordinates. Financial capital here has already emerged to foreign monopoly groups.
20. If capitalism in our country is a tragedy for the people, it is no different in the world. In its exploratory fury it tries to make the entire world a vast field for its greed. Technology owners make their goods and capital travel the world fast. Trillions of dollars circulate in financial systems like clouds across the skies, living only on speculative trading and theft.
21. Globalized capitalism means capitalist exclusion, which drags millions into misery, disease, hunger and death. Globalized capitalism means globalization of inhuman, cruel and inefficient character of its nature. We must globalize the need to overcome it, to put an end to this “modern” barbarism.
22. Such is the story: the youth and people of the world are not silent in the face of capitalist chaos. On every continent, voices and fists are raised against capitalism and its evils. They demand social rights, defend their sovereignty, their freedom and thus, they face capitalism, which denies them their aspirations.
23. The history of capitalism is also the history of resistance to exploitation and the defense of a fair society. This struggle generated in 1848, at the hands of the young Germans, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, the Manifesto of the Communist Party, a basic program of struggle against capitalism and in defense of Socialism. Program that still inspires us today. In 1917, under Lenin and other revolutionaries, Socialism proved in old Russia that capitalism is not eternal. In just a few decades, Socialism changed the face of the world, leading to the birth of the Soviet Union and the victory of various peoples in Eastern Europe and Asia. In these first historical experiences, Socialism proved that it is superior to capitalism by offering social rights and a new perspective on life for humanity, even living under constant capitalist siege. Never has a country faced so many aggressions like the USSR. And yet it was the USSR that defeated Nazi aggression, losing 22 million patriots, ushering in an era of greater social rights, democracy and the end of colonialism.
24. However, the people, the main force of the revolution, gradually lost prominence. Democracy and freedom were reduced to workers and the youth. Cultural and scientific life came to be treated with officialdom, factors that disarmed the revolutionary forces, leading to the end of this first socialist cycle in the USSR and Eastern Europe. But time does not stop. The resistance and evolution of Socialism in China, Cuba, Vietnam and other countries, together with the struggle of peoples all over the world, pave the way for the new struggle for Socialism, especially in Asia and Latin America.
25. These setbacks, in the first socialist experiences, reveal errors and show the need to improve our project further. The building of Socialism is just the beginning. Today we pursue the building of a new, humanized, egalitarian era, which will constitute the foundations of Socialism in our century. In Socialism with Our Characteristics, Brazil will experience its own experience, built on our own history.
26. We are excited and rebellious to defeat the old and capitalist face of Brazil and put Socialism with our young face in its place. The socialist Brazil that we want will have popular power, a workers’ Republic that will put an end to exploitation and there will be true freedom and the widest democracy for the people and the youth.
27. The people’s main aspirations will be libertarian and creative, encouraging knowledge and transformation, he will be fair and egalitarian. Land and businesses will benefit everyone, not just a handful of capitalists. Work will become a fundamental value of human development. Our socialist country will relate to the world independently, respecting the autonomy of other peoples and cultures. We will break the ties that have kept our backs to our continent for so long and we will finally assume our Latin American identity.
28. Our people, internationalists, will support the struggles of other peoples for a better world. In socialist Brazil, we, the young people, will be considered a present force and in it we will conquer our space to discuss, participate and decide on our own interests and on the direction of the country.
29. We don’t want miracles. Our Socialism will be green and yellow, it will play the guitar, it will rap and hip-hop, it will dance samba and rock, will celebrate Carnaval and play football. It will be built from our reality and paths that we will discover.
30. It will draw from the experience of the history of our people’s struggle. It will have the vigor of Castro Alves’ abolitionist verses, Zumbi’s rebellion, Tiradentes’ desire for freedom, the bravery of Helenira Rezende, Osvaldão and the guerrillas of Araguaia, the democratic anthem of the Diretas Já protests, the youth of the painted face protesters of Fora Collor, and the joy of those who celebrated the arrival of political forces from mass parties and social movements to the government of our country. It will keep the memory of those who yesterday resisted and today resist neoliberalism and who carry with them the banners of hope and the certainty that the future belongs to us.
31. It will also draw from the history of our Latin America, from the will for unity that moved Bolivar, from the peasant revolution of Zapata, from the struggle of Sandino, from the example of dedication and struggle of Ernesto “Che” Guevara.
32. In this society, we will achieve fair employment, public and free quality education for all, at all levels. In this society, we will guarantee access to the art produced in our country and in the world. We will fight for a new, progressive and popular Brazilian artistic culture, for incentives and dignity for our artists. Science and technology must be developed and used for our interests, not to generalize unemployment, destroy nature or produce weapons and war.
33. We want sports and leisure to be part of our daily lives and for us to be able to travel to all parts of our country.
34. The death squads will have to end and the police, instead of chasing us, will have to arrest those who destroy nature, who steal people’s money, the drug cartels and promoters of sex exploitation.
35. The Brazilian people, formed by the various ethnic groups that came together and created a new people, our Socialism will have to put an end to discrimination and prejudice of all kinds. In this society we will demand the right to healthcare, housing and a future. Nature will be protected as our people will be protected. Our children will receive attention instead of living on the streets, they will have the right to play and grow up happy. We will help to end illiteracy and lack of education. The people will learn the language of computers and the Internet, but they will not forget their ways of frank dialogue and their permanent social interactions. We want TVs and radio stations, Cinemas and all the media to stop being repression instruments and serve our interests.
36. This sounds like an utopia, but it is fully achievable. We will transform Brazil. We never stop into our rebellion and struggle for great transformations. The revolution we want requires a lot of struggle. It will not be an easy task. In its realization, rural and urban workers, the youth, artists and popular personalities will have to participate. Popular union will be the main weapon for us to win. Trade unions, student organizations and social movements should participate in it. The mass parties, united, must also form part of a broad front for a new era.
37. It is to build this new era that we invite you. Solitude is not for us, as we live the struggle of this era – cruel, but also challenging. Together we will write the history of this new Brazil that we want.
38. We, the Socialist Youth Union, the red, green-yellow flags and our yearnings, our rebelliousness, our solidarity and the daily struggle for Socialism will meet. We were not born for silence, we were born to sing and live another life, better and more just. This will be the workers’ republic that we will help to build. In it will be “the kids and the people in power…”. On it the flag of Socialism will be hoisted high and, on our faces, stamped our joy.
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