July 9, 2021

Santa makes a last minute appearance on Capitol Hill, intercepting white supremacy in DC, and Virginia electoral organizing.

JULY 9, 2021

Weekly Update



  • SUNDAY — MDC DSA Virtual Campaigns Fair
  • TONIGHT — Happy Hour hosted by DSA AfroSOC, Queer Section, SocFem
  • TUESDAY 12PM Support demonstrating workers at UMD

SUNDAY 3 to 7pm Join Metro DC DSA’s Virtual Campaigns Fair

Join Metro DC DSA this Sunday for its first virtual Campaigns Fair! Sunday, July 11th from 3 – 7pm is the extended time; it’s standing in for our regular second-Sunday GBM and will be in an open house style (come when you can and stay for however long you want)! Prospective members are welcome to virtually kick the tires and check out what our working groups and campaigns have done and plan to do to make socialism happen.

Come on out (virtually) and meet representatives from our Priority Campaigns, Working Groups and Sections! The event will provide an opportunity to meet comrades, hear about the good work being done in the chapter and get involved! The event will be held on the Gather program (Gather Town), a website you can access with your web browser, and the event will begin with a tutorial if you need a primer. We have used this program for our Adcom socials and it is very easy to use. You can register for the event here.

Here’s the sked for the day:

  • 3 – 3:15pm: Gather Tutorial for anyone who needs it — Gather needs no download; works on your browser.
  • 3 – 6pm: Booths for working groups, branches, committees — learn about what MDC DSA and its tri-state branches are doing.
  • 3 – 6pm: Rolling games of Jackbox and Roberts Rules Jeopardy
  • 6 – 7pm: A big socialist trivia game! We have drafted a big game that covers quotes, history and other socialist trivia, hosted by our comrades Ryan M and Ashik. The winning team will get prizes and there will be a prize for the best team name (puns encouraged!).

TONIGHT 6 to 9pm — Social Hour for BIPOC, LGBTQ+, women, non-binary comrades

A Social Hour for comrades who are Black, Indigenous, people of color (BIPOC), LGBTQIA2S+, women and/or of a marginalized gender. If that’s you, please join in AdMo at A League of Her Own (ALOHO), 6 – 9pm. Look for folx wearing red +/- roses! Please RSVP so we can be sure to make appropriate space at the venue!

We can gather to establish connections, make friends, and perhaps build power among marginalized individuals within Metro DC DSA. Please note that this is in Adams Morgan so plan your travel accordingly.

Stand with UMD Workers! — noon Tuesday at UMD

In our labor working group’s event last June, Labor Speaker Todd Holden  president of AFSCME 1072 which represents UMD-College Park workers – one of the main issues he discussed was the arbitrary return to in-person work. Up at UMD, more than 550 staff signed onto a petition demanding expanded telework options for staff.

UMD workers are hosting a demonstration in front of the Main Administration building on Tuesday July 13th at 12pm noon. Workers plan to send a message that they need solutions TODAY, and that their voices will not be minimized, ignored, or explained away. Here is the link to register!  Students or alumni are doubly encouraged!


Medicare for All working group in person gathering – Sunday at 7pm

Following the virtual campaigns fair this Sunday, the Medicare for All working group will be hosting an in-person social at Lyman’s Tavern from 7 to 9 pm. Many of us only know each other from behind a computer screen. Now that we’re vaccinated and safe, we can finally meet in person for drinks and camaraderie.

Next Wednesday – MDC DSA’s labor speaker series on Maryland theater workers

On Wednesday, July 14th at 7pm, join our labor working group for a discussion with Anne Vantine, the Business Agent for IATSE Local 868. She’ll discuss how COVID has impacted arts and theater workers, the difference the union has made in protecting workers and jobs during these times, and the ongoing struggle of front of the house workers at Bethesda’s Strathmore Theater. DSA members, along with our labor working group, have been joining workers demonstrating outside Bethesda’s Strathmore Theater to send a clear message to management to protect the jobs of workers at the theater. 

Tonight – Greater Baltimore Socialist Night School on housing and displacement

Our comrades at Greater Baltimore DSA are kicking off a hybrid-attendance Socialist Night School TONIGHT, Friday, July 9. MDC DSA comrades who want to Zoom in can find the access here and check out the details.


Harassment of unhoused residents in DC’s Ward 2

On June 20th, a complaint was filed with the US Park Police by some residents in Ward 2 which advocated for the “immediate removal” of an encampment of unhoused residents located at 12th and Mass Ave NW. Consideration of the removal came despite CDC guidelines recommending people stay unsheltered where options aren’t available.

Allies and concerned residents in ANC2F have been raising alarm and extending support to folks in the encampment. And at an ANC meeting held on Weds, concerned residents and allies led by Commissioner Alexandra Bailey of 2F08 showed up to voice their concerns. Reps from Palm Collective, Remora House DC, HIPS DC, Sunrise Movement, Ward 2 Mutual Aid, and others showed up to voice concern at the meeting. You can sign the petition to stop the eviction here and find additional details about what’s going on in a tweet thread prepared by Palm Collective


Washington Socialist July Issue

The Washington Socialist is our chapter’s monthly publication — produced by volunteer writers and editors on our Publications Team. Here’s what we’ve got this month …


Updates for July will be on Fridays, July 16 and 23; we’ll have a full issue of the Washington Socialist publishing on Friday, July 30. Send submissions to thesocialist@mdcdsa.org or chat us up about it on the #publications Slack channel, where we routinely collaborate on speaking and thinking our socialism.


From the NYT: “Pandemic Wave of Automation May Be Bad News for Workers.” The need for social distancing led restaurants and grocery stores to seek technological help. That may improve productivity but could also cost jobs.

From Politico: “Workers are reaping benefits in the post-Covid economy. But their power may not last.” Quoting Andy Levin’s remarks in the article: “I think the gains of workers will be evanescent…they will not last.” Translation for our side: the window for organizing these workers may be smaller than we would like.

For example (NYT again): The current alignment of late-pandemic, social-justice-oriented, early-Biden administration politics could help create the conditions [in Seattle] for an empowered, well-organized workforce capable of challenging Amazon

Easy segue: Our comrade Sarah Leonard reviews the latest book on Amazon and its discontents: “[Alec] MacGillis’s book belongs to the age of devastating inequality, with a sense that the United States is not just unequal but divided in its politics and values, perhaps united only by an extreme skepticism that democratic governance is anything but a joke.” From the New Republic via Portside.

From the AP: “Six Months after Capitol Assault, Corporate Pledges Fall Flat” … Dozens of big companies, citing their commitment to democracy, pledged to avoid donating money to the 147 lawmakers who objected to Congress’ certification of Joe Biden’s victory … [but] it was largely an empty one. Six months later, many of those companies have resumed funneling cash to political action committees that benefit the election efforts of lawmakers whether they objected to the election certification or not.”

From our Maryland comrade Bill Fletcher Jr, touted by Duane Campbell in the North Star blog: an essay on how to create a narrative of radical success using a famous formula.

Our comrade Brian W notes that labor is demanding more power around the world, and in some cases succeeding in countries struggling with the “resource curse.”

MDC DSA comrades have been talking about and swapping around on Slack this 1986 (!) Michael Parenti video “so-called poor countries” — “you don’t go to poor countries to make money … countries are rich … it’s the people who are poor.” A good example of how the facts of corporate imperialism are constants.


Friday, July 9

6 – 9pm | Social Hour for Us: AfroSOC, Queer Section, SocFem
White cis straight males are asked not to attend.

Sunday, July 11

3 – 7pm | Metro DC DSA Virtual Campaigns Fair
7 – 9pm | M4A Working Group Social

Wednesday, July 14

7 – 8:30pm | July Labor Speaker Series
8 – 9:00pm | Why You Should Join DSA / New Member Orientation 

Thursday, July 15

5 – 6pm | NoVA Tenant Organizing Planning Meeting
7 – 8:30pm | NoVA Executive Meeting

Saturday, July 17

7 – 8:30pm | NoVA Book Club
Gar Alperovitz’s What Then Must We Do?

Sunday, July 18

6 – 8pm | NoVA Branch Picnic

Monday, July 19

7 – 8:30pm | July Labor Working Group Meeting

Wednesday, July 21

7 – 9pm | PG Co. DSA General Body Meeting
8 – 9pm | Why You Should Join DSA / New Member Orientation

Thursday, July 22

7 – 8:30pm | NoVA Branch Monthly Organizing Meeting

Wednesday, July 28

8 – 9pm | Why You Should Join DSA / New Member Orientation

Monday, August 2

7 – 8:30pm | August Labor Speaker Series


A section to amplify smaller notices from allied organizations, community groups and mutual aid formations.

Housing is a Human Right, Protect Ward 2 Unhoused Neighbors
The US Park Police is planning to evict a community of unhoused people living near the intersection of 12th St and Massachusetts Ave NW in Ward 2 after nearby housed residents requested the park be cleared. Sunrise Movement, Remora House and several other DC mutual aid and community organizations are working to protect these neighbors. Sign the petition to stop the eviction here and find additional details in the Palm Collective tweet thread

Produce Plus Alert
Are you a Produce Plus recipient who hasn’t been to the farmer’s market yet this year, or do you know someone who might be? Produce Plus participants must visit a market by July 27th in order to claim their place in the program, otherwise their spot will be lost and they will no longer be able to participate. If you know anyone who hasn’t picked up their produce yet, be sure to let them know!

Kyanite Pantry Updates
Kyanite Pantry is working on renovating their new mobile pantry (woo!) and is not distributing produce this week. They will resume Tuesday Pull Up For Produce events on July 13 at 4095 Minnesota Ave from 3 to 5pm. 

Helping the Unhoused in a Heat Emergency
The DC government activated its Heat Emergency Plan this week as the heat index reached as high as 105 degrees in some parts of Washington between June 27 and 30. This piece by Street Sense Media is a great explainer on what aid is available for DC residents, including unhoused neighbors, and what we should all know to keep ourselves and others safe in the heat. 


Saturday, July 10

3pm | Strike in Colombia: Cuidados y Sostenabilidad De La Vida
RSVP Here The translocal 9M network, in collaboration with feminist collectives in Bogota, Cali and Pasto, and DSA Latinos Socialistas call for the Conversatory “Paro en Colombia: Care and Sustainability of Life”. The Conversatory seeks to open a space to address, from different angles, the relationship between feminisms, the National Strike in Colombia, and the … more at link

Tuesday, July 13

8pm | Green New Deal for Public Schools Campaign Launch
Gaining a radical and transformative expansion of public goods in the United States includes organizing key groups around public schools, a public institution that exists in every community and from which we can make broad-based demands for aggressive green investment. This is a campaign for dignified, unionized green jobs; it is a campaign for climate resilient and zero-carbon public buildings; it is a campaign for high levels of public, green investment in multiracial working class communities across the country. …more at link

Sunday, July 18

7pm | How can we make DSA Anti-racist and Multiracial
A conversation connecting issues faced by people of color during DSA’s origins and today, between the authors of “A People of Color’s History of DSA” (2019), Alyssa de la Rosa and David Roddy of Sacramento DSA, who are also authors of two convention resolutions … more at link


Sunday, July 11

noon – 6pm | Hot Sprout Summer + Local Vendor Pop-up
The Share a Seed project will be tabling and distributing seeds at a plant-focused event put on by We the Plants DC and 3 Stars Brewery. The plant mix/mingle is from noon to 3pm and the local vendor pop-up is from 3 to 6pm.

1 – 4pm | Ward 3 Pantry is open!
Bring donations or come pick up fresh produce and cleaning supplies July 11 at 4225 Connecticut Ave.

Saturday, July 31

5pm | Farm (and Other F Words) Book Talk
Farm (and Other F Words) is a book that explores why we farm the way we do, what’s wrong with the current system and what the f*&! we can do about it. The Share a Seed project is putting on this event with DC-based author Sarah Mock at The Pug in NE DC. 

The flame of thought, the magnificence of art, the wonder of discovery, and the audacity of invention all belong to revolutionary periods when humanity, tired of the chains of its restrictions, shatters them, and stops inebriated to breathe the breeze of a vaster and freer horizon.

Virgilia D’Andrea