April 22, 2022

April 22, 2022



  • Ballots to be sent today Re: MDC DSA’s Brooks endorsement

  • Meet and Greet with Max Socol — TOMORROW at 3pm

  • Next weekend: Stomp Out Slumlords protest on Mayor Muriel Bowser — Saturday, April 30 at 11am

Ballots to be sent today Re: MDC DSA’s Brooks endorsement

On Thursday, April 21, Metro DC DSA held an emergency General Body Meeting to consider Resolution 2022-04-GR01 to revoke the chapter’s endorsement of Brandy Brooks for Montgomery County Council in the wake of allegations that Brandy Brooks committed sexual harassment against a campaign staffer. During the meeting, members heard from the motivators of the resolution, heard debate on the resolution and had the opportunity to ask any questions or provide any arguments for or against the resolution. All members in good standing will receive a ballot on OpaVote today, Friday, April 22nd to vote on whether or not to revoke the chapter’s endorsement of the Brandy Brooks campaign. The ballot will stay open for three days. 

Public information and statements on the allegations:

  • Wednesday, April 13: Brandy Brooks’ public announcement to suspend the campaign for two weeks
  • Thursday, April 14th: Metro DC DSA public statement in response to the allegations
  • Friday, April 15th: Washington Post article with more details about the allegations, including quotes from both parties

The Steering Committee will share the results of the vote as soon as they are available. Separate from the process to revoke endorsement, the Steering Committee has also indicated that they will begin Code of Conduct investigations into the allegations.

Meet and Greet with Max Socol — TOMORROW, April 23 at 3pm

Metro DC DSA will be participating in a meet and greet with DSA-endorsed Max Socol, who is running for Maryland State Senate, this Saturday, April 23 from 3 to 5pm in Capitol View Park. There’ll be live bluegrass music, free ice cream and, of course, a chance to meet and talk with longtime chapter member Max Socol!

Next weekend: Stomp Out Slumlords protest on Mayor Muriel Bowser — Saturday, April 30 at 11am

Join Stomp Out Slumlords to ask Mayor Bowser: What are you doing about the loss of rent controlled apartments in DC? What are you doing about the slum conditions landlords make tenants live in? Where did the missing STAY DC money go? Meet outside the Georgia Ave-Petworth Metro Station on Saturday, April 30, at 11am. Let us know you’re coming at the protest’s ActionNetwork.

After the protest, please also join us at a nearby park to celebrate. We’re bringing music, water, bagged snacks and soccer balls. There will be bathroom access, and each leg of our route is ≤20 minutes by foot. Contact us via ActionNetwork with questions or access needs.

Stomp Out Slumlords’ anti-eviction canvass, previously scheduled for that weekend, has also been postponed one week. Join us for that event by meeting outside of L’Enfant Plaza Metro Station on Saturday, May 7, at 1:30pm. Let us know you’re coming at the canvass’s ActionNetwork.


Last Call: Spring 2022 Organizer Training Applications

Last call to apply for Spring 2022 Organizer Training! This training is for anyone in the chapter interested in improving their skills holding organizing conversations, formulating strategy, and joining a cohort of people looking to grow as organizers. Applications for the Spring 2022 Organizer Training are open, and chapter members and allies are invited to apply here! The training will form a cohort of up to 20 people looking to use hands-on methods learned from chapter trainers that teach principles of organizing as a socialist. Modules will include: Why We Organize, Building Campaigns, Developing Leadership, Relational Organizing Conversations, Principles of Successful Campaigns, Power Mapping and more. 

We’re seeking both new and rising organizers looking to gain skills, along with experienced organizers looking to renew their organizing chops. We hope to build this group with members from across working groups, branches, caucuses, sections, campaigns and committees looking to practice and learn organizing skills — and create a cohort of people with shared interests and experiences. The training will be held at a mutually convenient time weekly for five weeks in a mostly virtual setting from late April to early June. Apply now — and please send this opportunity to anyone you think would be interested. You may nominate someone you think would be good for this training too!

Canvass for Gabriel Acevero in D39 — Tomorrow, Saturday, April 23 at noon

Join MDC DSA comrades to talk to voters in Germantown and Montgomery Village about our endorsed candidate Del. Gabriel Acevero (Maryland House of Delegates, District 39) tomorrow, Saturday, April 23 from noon to 3pm. We’ll gather in the Shady Grove Metro Kiss and Ride area. We’ll provide training, a script, DSA literature and canvassing partners if wanted and then we’ll meet up after knocking on doors to socialize and debrief. Sign up here!

Max Socol Canvass at Viers Mill Elementary — This Sunday, April 24 at noon

MDC DSA-endorsed candidate Max Socol (Maryland State Senate, District 18) is holding a canvass, launching from Viers Mill Elementary School on Sunday, April 24th from noon to 3pm. The MoCo electoral working group is encouraging DSA members to show up and talk to voters about Max! RSVP for the canvass here!

Rally with Fairfax Educators for Collective Bargaining — Thursday, April 28 at 6:30pm

Rally with the Fairfax Education Association and the Fairfax County Federation of Teachers in support of a collective bargaining resolution! Thursday, April 28, 6:30pm at Luther Jackson Middle School at 3020 Gallows Rd, Falls Church, VA 22042. It’s time we bring collective bargaining back to Fairfax after 45 years! FCPS employees, public education advocates, allies and unionists are also welcome. Bonus points for those who sign up to speak/testify at the meeting! Your voice matters! RSVP using this link.


DC Council likely to give in to Mayor Bowser’s increase of police force

The DC Council is set to give in to Mayor Bowser’s brazen proposal to increase the size of the police force next year — putting DC on course to achieve the Mayor’s goal of increasing the size of MPD to 4,000 sworn officers (as of March 7, MPD has 3,512 officers). Right-wing networks in DC are in the process of inciting a moral panic about crime and violence in the city, spreading deliberate propaganda online, in mainstream media outlets and on the airwaves in a concerted effort to shake down District residents.

Despite lies coming from the DC police union, MPD has not been defunded. As we covered in the Washington Socialist, last year the DC Police sustained a meager budget cut of about 7% ($43 million) which was mainly realized through cost reductions to administrative expenses and in pulling cops out of schools. In fact, last year’s budget actually allocated more funding to increase the size of the MPD. Despite the officer increase, MPD has run into trouble finding suitable recruits — the vaccine requirement has been a particular hold up for would-be cops (which is why the DC Police Union sued the city to waive vaccine requirements earlier this year). 

Increasing the size of the police force would fly in the face of the recommended police reforms proposed to the DC Police Reform Commission. The Commission, founded in the wake of the Floyd 2020 uprisings, was tasked with charting a local path from the politics of mass incarceration. In their report, the DC Police Reform Commission called for the Council to reduce the number of sworn officers by at least the rate of attrition over five years. (They also called for an independent audit to determine what an appropriate staffing level would be for police officers — the 4,000 number being proposed by Bowser is coming from the police themselves.)

Additional news, testimony and coverage on this debate unfolding in DC:

  • DC’s Defund MPD Coalition released an online guide to identifying and fighting “copaganda,” access here.
  • Metro DC DSA provided testimony to the DC Council’s Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety in 2022.
  • Recent editorial in the Washington Post on why the DC Police Reform Commission recommended an audit of the force.
  • Response from DSA endorsed Zachary Parker (running for the Ward 5 council seat) on proposals to increase the size of the force.
  • Proposal from Robert White — who is running a credible campaign against Muriel Bowser this year – on tackling gun violence in the city.

Southern Maryland DSA May Day Picnic — Sunday, May 1 at 3pm

Come out and meet your SoMD comrades for some May Day fun at Gilbert Run Park, 13140 Charles St, Charlotte Hall, MD 20622. It’s a potluck, but we’ll provide soft drinks and hot dogs. Beer is A-ok if you want to bring it. Music and yard games will be a thing. Bring your SOs, children and pets too. You do not have to be a DSA member in good standing to attend. Meet at the “Hilltop Pavilion” in the park. General parking is right off the park’s main road. Parking is limited, but you access it by driving up the hill to the right. Sign up here if you’d like to bring something! Please indicate any allergens in your potluck items. RSVP here!

MDC DSA International Potluck & Book Exchange — Saturday, May 7 at 1pm

You are invited to the MDC DSA Internationalism Working Group’s potluck and book exchange at Malcolm X Park on Saturday May 7th at 1pm to eat some food, swap books and hangout. The new MDC DSA book exchange group will also be at the international potluck with food for thought: books! Bring a dish of your choice, a book for our book exchange or just yourself! RSVP and find out more info here — and share with your friends!

And on the latest war …

Statement from Vietnam Veterans Against the War in the just-released issue of The Veteran: “In our 55 years as an organization, Vietnam Veterans Against the War (VVAW) has witnessed way too many wars. We know firsthand the consequences and devastation of imperial wars. We are saddened and angered at the unnecessary death and destruction that Putin and Russian troops are raining down on the Ukrainian people. … To prevent further bloodshed and devastation, Putin and the Russian troops must immediately cease the bombing and withdraw all forces from Ukraine. Just as VVAW supported the self-determination and the right of self-defense of the Vietnamese people, we support the rights of the Ukrainian people to determine their own destiny and defend themselves, free of outside coercion and threats. US politicians cannot confine themselves to screaming from the grandstands. The US has played NATO expansion against a paranoid and aggressive Putin for decades. A substantial amount of blame for the situation and a burden for reparations falls on this side of the ocean.” Statement dated March 25, 2022; full statement at link.


Special report on the recent, highly creative rally to end student debt is in the Washington Socialist now! Find it here.

Publications Schedule: The May issue of the Washington Socialist drops on Friday, April 29, in advance of May Day events. May issue article deadline is TOMORROW, April 23. Weekly Updates in May are Friday May 6, 13, 20 and 27, and the June issue of the Washington Socialist is scheduled Friday, June 3 with an article deadline of May 28. Write for us anytime; hit us up at thesocialist@mdcdsa.org (all writers welcome, DSA members or not). If an MDC DSA member, join our #publications Slack channel to keep up with the chatter and watch the issues build. 

To get on MDC DSA Slack there’s a new path, and the most intuitive ever: email slack@mdcdsa.org. Use the email address by which national DSA knows you. The requester must be an MDC DSA member in good standing. Here’s the link to find out your paid-up status with national DSA: http://proof.dsausa.org/ 

Standing resources: Metro DC DSA has substantial local-chapter online resources for understanding our past, present and future. Find out about our present structure and configuration here, including current campaigns; check our bylaws and the accompanying explainer on our governance. See our archive of recent statements from the chapter. MDC DSA has branches in NoVA and Maryland.

Find more at our chapter website — including backfiles of the Washington Socialist article hub sorted by issue areas. 

Looking to get involved in the chapter?

Are you a member who’s been looking for ways to get involved in our chapter’s organizing? Are you interested in joining the DSA but would like to talk to someone about it first? No matter where you’re coming from, we’d love to talk to you! Follow this link to schedule a conversation with one of our comrades!

Here is the April issue of the Washington Socialist: Left history to learn from; DC police oversight action; and a bid at untangling DSA’s stance on the Ukraine war – plus that special report on the debt cancellation rally, just added.


Friday, April 22

5:30pm | NoVA Earth Day Cookout/Potluck

6 – 8pm | We Power Social Hour(s)

Saturday, April 23

11am – noon | Virtual Field Trip: Maryland Center for History and Culture (Indigenous Peoples of the Chesapeake)  

noon – 3pm | Canvass for Gabriel Acevero in D39

Sunday, April 24

noon – 3pm | Max Socol Canvass at Viers Mill Elementary

1 – 3pm | PG County Branch Monthly General Meeting discussing Greenbelt Reparations Panel campaign

Monday, April 25

6:30 – 7:30pm | Medicare for All Working Group biweekly meeting

7 – 8:30pm | April Campaign Council Meeting

8 – 9pm | NoVA Branch Member Mobilizers

Tuesday, April 26

7pm | Religion & The Left Series: The Individual, the Collective & the Common Good (DSA national event)

Wednesday, April 27 

7 – 9pm | The Dawn of Everything Reading Group mtg 8

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

Thursday, April 28 

6:30 – 7:30pm | Cuba Campaign Planning Meeting

8 – 9pm | Defund MPD Organizational Outreach Meeting

Saturday, April 30

4 – 5pm | Green Alert: What the latest science means for climate action

Sunday, May 1

1 – 2:30pm | Vets for Socialism Study Group

Monday, May 2

7 – 8:30pm | Labor Reading Group week 5 

Tuesday, May 3

8pm | Political Engagement Committee Biweekly Meeting

Wednesday, May 4

7 – 9pm | The Dawn of Everything Reading Group mtg 9

Thursday, May 5

6:30 – 7:30pm | Cuba Campaign Planning Meeting

Saturday, May 7

1 – 4pm | Internationalism Potluck & Book Exchange at Malcolm X Park

1:30 – 4:30pm | SOS Anti-eviction Canvas

Monday, May 9

6:30 – 7:30pm | Medicare 4 All Working Group Biweekly Meeting | #M4A

Wednesday, May 11

7 – 9pm | The Dawn of Everything Reading Group mtg 10

Thursday, May 12

6:30 – 7:30pm | Cuba Campaign Planning Meeting

7 – 8:30pm | Internationalism Working Group Monthly Meeting 

7 – 8:30pm | NoVA Branch monthly organizing meeting

Sunday, May 15

3 – 5pm | MDC DSA General Body Meeting (link to come)

Monday, May 16

7 – 8:30pm | Labor Reading Group week 6

Tuesday, May 17

8 – 9pm | Political Engagement Committee Biweekly Meeting

Tuesday, May 24

8 – 9:30pm | Political Education Working Group meeting

Wednesday, May 25

5 – 6 pm | Public Power Action at Pepco HQ


Support Migrants Being Forcibly Bused from Texas | Sanctuary DMV et al

Texas Governor Greg Abbott continues to traffic at-risk persons cross country in his cruel attempt to remove migrants. Several community groups in DC, including Sanctuary DMV, are trying to help by providing food, shelter and funds for continued transit. If you can volunteer to help coordinate or provide supplies, please sign up here.

Celebrate the Earth! Earth Day 2022 Ideas | Surfrider DC

Today, Friday, April 22 is Earth Day — a great day to go above and beyond to support our natural resources and planet, even if you celebrate the earth every day! Whether you clean up your local park, sort recycling, garden or share your favorite natural spots on social media, Surfrider DC has some great background to help you root yourself in the origins of the day. Check out their blog on the origins of Earth Day (including their suggestions for ways to celebrate!) here.

Earth Day Cleanup | The Anacostia Watershed Society (AWS)

Tomorrow, Saturday, April 23, the day after Earth Day is AWS’ largest volunteer event of the year. Thousands of volunteers come out to dozens of different sites around the watershed to pick up trash, serve their communities and enjoy the Anacostia River. See AWS’ website for sign-up and additional details.

Planting Natives | Bertie Backus Urban Food Hub

Tomorrow, on Saturday, April 23 from 9am to 1pm, the Bertie Backus Urban Food Hub will be celebrating Earth Day by planting environmentally friendly, native plants. More details and sign up info here.

Plant Happy Hour | Very Sad Lab

Join local organization Very Sad Lab for a plant-based happy hour at Oyster Oyster on Friday, April 29 from 4 to 7pm. There will be free pinball, plant repotting and plant clinic, pollinator seed-ball making and a Topo Chico give away!


Bill Fletcher Jr. revisits a groundbreaking book, Walter Rodney’s How Europe Underdeveloped Africa, that showed — 50 years ago — “the relationship of racism and national oppression to the construction of capitalism. … Racism and national oppression were not the result of a genetic deformity or a predisposition on the part of Europeans, argued Rodney, but rather racial oppression enabled capitalism’s development and continued operation as an economic system.” From New Labor Forum via Portside. 

Analysis from Jewish Currents on Eric Adams’ reign over New York, which may serve as a warning to DC on adopting his brand of public safety politics. Critical topic of the piece: the threat that moral panic of crime poses to a politics of solidarity, and why the abolitionist and electoralist left need each other to rally a response.

Student debt news: capitalism offers lollipop (small one) “The [Department of Education] estimates that the changes will result in immediate debt cancellation for at least 40,000 borrowers who will now qualify for Public Service Loan Forgiveness. In addition, several thousand borrowers will now qualify for debt cancellation under IDR.” From NPR

Richmond joins the Starbucks unionization wave, with five stores voting to unionize! “The votes cast among employees at the five stores showed a vote that was 82 employees in favor of union representation and 14 votes against union representation, according to a tally by the Northern Virginia Labor Federation.” 

“Jennifer Abruzzo, general counsel of the National Labor Relations Board, has outlined an agenda that would transform the American workplace,” Harold Meyerson writes in The American Prospect. Abruzzo has spotlighted and critiqued the abusive practice of “captive audience” mandatory workplace meetings dedicated to anti-union propaganda.

From WaPo: “Sanders ‘has not ruled out another run for president’ if Biden doesn’t — ‘In the event of an open 2024 Democratic presidential primary, Sen. Sanders has not ruled out another run for president,’ writes a top adviser. … ‘the central fact remains true, which is that Senator Sanders is the most popular officeholder in the country.’”

Today is Earth Day — no better reason to browse the Washington Socialist’s archive of ecosocialist and GND-focused writings.

Sometimes it is hard to believe we can make and sustain meaningful progress building a rooted, working-class movement. The Landless Movement in Brazil proves otherwise. Portside posted an article from Waging Non-Violence in which Mark and Paul Engler interview Rebecca Tarlau about her book on MST’s history, activities and relevance to our “Long March through the Institutions.”

A socialist world where all businesses must be assessed on community impact? Writer Shauna Gordon-McKeon explores a radical future in her piece “Sunlight” in the futurist magazine After The Storm.

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