On the night of Dec. 4, the people of Los Angeles poured into the city’s downtown Pershing Square in outrage at the U.S. Senate’s approval of the GOP’s $1.5 trillion tax bill, passed two days earlier. The Trump administration’s tax plan, which aims to slash the nominal corporate tax rate by 15 percent at the expense of public necessities such as education, healthcare, and transportation, has sparked a fierce nationwide uproar. Amid chants of “This is class war! Tax the rich and feed the poor!” from the more than 600 strong crowd marching in opposition, Liberation News spoke with demonstrators to ask what had motivated them to take part in Monday night’s call to action.
“We’re here trying to figure out a strategy to combat this crisis. We want people who recognize that this tax bill will destroy the fabric of this country to participate in a broader movement” said Rachel, a USC student in attendance with her peers.
David, a notary, Lyft driver, and father of two, expressed his dismay at the tax plan’s echoes of the great depression and the disastrous trickle down economic policies of the Reagan-Bush era. “This bill will have grave consequences for our children; it’s an all out assault on higher education and healthcare. Cutting taxes for the rich does not work. It didn’t work in the 20s or in the 80s, it never has and it never will. The rich aren’t going to do anything for anybody other than themselves with all that un-taxed wealth.”
Louis, a retail worker, agreed adding that, “We need to recognize these tax breaks for the rich are going to take away money from the poor. It is class war and we know politicians aren’t up to the task of stopping it. It’s going to take communities coming together to put a stop to it but I’m hopeful we will. I’m out here for unity. Our voices will be heard.”
The rally concluded with statements from speakers representing various organizations and walks of life. Soni Lloyd, a history teacher with LAUSD, began with an announcement to the crowd “My message is this: It is us against them. Us against them! Who are we? We are the people. We are people of color. We are the working class. And we’ve been dominated for far too long by those that don’t work: the owning class, represented by two parties, the Democrats and the Republicans … And change never comes from the two parties of the rich.”
The people of Los Angeles demand change and stand resolute in their struggle against this latest assault on the working class.
The fight continues this Saturday, Dec. 9 at 12 p.m. in Pershing Square with a rally organized by the People’s Congress of Resistance.