Unraveling the Hierarchy of Oppression

When frequenting any Leftist space, either online or in-person, there are always comrades who insist on a hierarchy of oppression.

They are devoted to the idea of class struggle as the ultimate struggle in our lives. The struggles for racial and sexual equality, and for LGBTQ rights, underlie this devotion.  Each of these classes (no pun intended) of oppression is linked in infinite ways, and they cannot be arranged into any sort of rigid hierarchy.  The one exception to this rule is perhaps the tremendous importance of combating racism in all forms within white communities, as it is linked most strongly to all of the other struggles.

But the difficulties we face are layered.

Capitalism is our enemy, but it is only one way that the people in power abuse the rest. This is how we have become united as Socialists.  But if we ignore the issues that feed off of inequality, we “own” capital in other areas of our life. Capital as Caucasions, capital as men, capital as cisgendered people, capital as straight people.

To conquer this is not about feeling guilt or destroying ourselves out of shame. The fight should be about realizing the power that we were born with, and learning to share it and use it for good.


Valeria Martinez

is a young writer who is currently working on pursuing her dreams and becoming a better person. She is a student and has published both poetry and creative essays in the past.

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