[Translation of an interview from Brasil de Fato of São Paulo for June 25, 2013. See original here.]
by Nilton Viana
It’s time for the government to join the people or it will pay the price in the future. That is one of the assessments of João Pedro Stedile of the national leadership of the Movimento dos Trabalhadores Rurais Sem Terra (MST – Landless Workers’ Movement) concerning the recent demonstrations throughout the country. He believes there is an urban crisis in Brazilian cities brought on by the present stage of finance capitalism. “People are living in hell in the large cities, spending three, four hours a day traveling, when they could be with their families, studying or taking part in cultural activities,” he declares. The MST leader believes the reduction of fares mattered greatly to all the people and that this was a correct position on the part of the Movimento Passe Livre (Free Fare Movement), which was able to call demonstrations in the name of the people’s interests.
In this exclusive interview with Brasil de Fato, Stedile talks about the character of these mobilizations and makes an appeal: we should be conscious of the nature of the demonstrations and all take to the streets to contend for hearts and minds in order to politicize these youth, who have no experience with the class struggle. “The young are fed up with this kind of bourgeois, mercantile politics,” he holds. And he warns: the most serious part is that the parties of the institutional Left, all of them, have adopted these methods. They have grown old and bureaucratic. The popular forces and the parties of the Left need to direct all their energy toward taking to the streets, since what is happening in every city, in every demonstration, is an ideological dispute in the struggle over class interests. “We need to explain to the people who their principal enemies are.”