Why I Joined the WIL

I came across the WIL in the midst of the world-historical events of last February. I was sold my first Socialist Appeal during a rally in support of the Egyptian revolution, and was floored by the quality of the analysis; I had to learn more about this organization.

Like many others, I did not find and become a member of the Workers International League before having spent the previous few years in and around other leftist groups. In fact, my decision to join was very influenced by that time spent around these other groups, as I found that the WIL is unique among the left in myriad ways.

First among my reasons for joining, was the fact that the WIL has a clear political program based upon the methods and principles of Marxism and Bolshevism. This is in direct contrast to my past experience with groups who sketch out vague statements of purpose or construct laundry lists of “isms” that they are for or against.

In The Transitional Program, Leon Trotsky wrote that “It is necessary to help the masses in the process of the daily struggle to find the bridge between present demands and the socialist program of the revolution.” Unlike the lists and statements I had been exposed to in other groups, the political program of demands raised by the WIL, and campaigns such as the Campaign for a Mass Party of Labor directly embody the Transitional Program and the methods of Marxism. The WIL is building a bridge from the present situation to the necessities of the future.

This leads into to my second reason, although it is no less crucial: the WIL is a Marxist organization embodying the best traditions of working class politics as analyzed and explained by Marx, Engels, Lenin, and Trotsky. Built on the foundation laid by Ted Grant and the International Marxist Tendency, the WIL not only studies the history of working class politics and its great literary and theoretical works, but applies the lessons to the present and future. Most left organizations in the U.S. write articles analyzing current events. Only the WIL draws conclusions, offers perspectives for the future, and includes transitional demands and slogans.

And so it is no mistake that the WIL has the most politically and theoretically solid rank and file of any group I have encountered. It is a group built by young American workers, its literature is produced by young workers, and its successes are gained by the efforts and financial sacrifices of—you guessed it—young workers.

Following in the footsteps of the Russian revolutionaries and Ted Grant, the WIL is not an organization looking to simply swell its ranks with just anyone interested in paying dues. It is interested in building a solid foundation and cadre of educated, trained leaders. These are the methods that will build a strong organization in the present while also laying a foundation for the future leadership of the American working class.

In the current atmosphere of intensifying class struggle, I am confident the WIL will attract more and more people like me, drawn to the ideas and methods which will equip us for the struggles ahead.

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