Sept 30, 2022

September 30, 2022



  • Navigating Public Service Loan Forgiveness — Socialist Night School, This Monday, October 3 at 7pm

  • Tell the Montgomery County Council: Rent Stabilization Works! Phone Zap on Monday, October 3

Transgender kids in Virginia are under attack by the governor, and comrades in NOVA are looking for members across the region to help them by attending a rally on October 6 at a Fairfax County Public School Board meeting and making both written and verbal public comments. The details: on September 16, Gov. Glenn Youngkin released draft 2022 model policies for schools that intentionally target trans and non-binary kids in Virginia schools. Among many terrible things, it seeks to erase trans and non-binary youth’s existence from schools, requires staff to “out” students in hostile environments, and prohibits school staff from affirming students’ names and pronouns. There are three specific ways we are guiding Metro DC DSA members to support and stand with LGBTQ+ and especially trans, non-binary and gender-expansive youth in Virginia:

  1. Write to the State Board of Education (official site) stating that you OPPOSE the 2022 model policy. Personal (though non-identifying) stories that center transgender, non-binary and gender-expansive youth are best. Please see this page for assistance helping draft an effective public comment.
  2. Attend the Rally for Trans & Gender Expansive Students in Fairfax with Metro DC DSA members before the next Fairfax County Public School Board meeting at 6:15pm this Thursday, October 6th at Jackson Middle School! The rally will encourage the Board to bring a lawsuit against the model policies. Please sign up in advance and keep an eye out for updates.
  3. Sign up to speak at the Fairfax County School Board meeting (registration is open from September 30th to October 4th) at the next Fairfax County Public School Board meeting, Thursday, October 6th at 7pm, Luther Jackson Middle School! We need people who can give public comments in support of transgender, non-binary and gender-expansive youth, and in opposition to the draft 2022 model policy. Please reach out on the #northern-virginia Slack if you wish to comment and would like support.

Navigating Public Service Loan Forgiveness — Socialist Night School, This Monday, October 3 at 7pm

Interested in how recent changes to student loans affect you? Think you may be eligible for Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) before the opportunity closes at the end of October? Sign up here to join financial planner and fellow DSA member Ethan Miller for an online Metro DC DSA Socialist Night School and workshop on student loans this Monday, October 3rd, 7pm. At the event, you’ll learn more about why education debt abolition is so important, how the PSLF program works, how temporary changes are helping borrowers like you, the steps you should take ASAP to maximize your potential loan forgiveness, and how the recent $10,000 loan cancellation announcement should or should not change your repayment strategy. Make sure you sign up in advance for the link!

Tell the Montgomery County Council: Rent Stabilization Works! Phone Zap on Monday, October 3

For the past two years, rent stabilization in Montgomery County kept families in their homes. Yet, the Montgomery County Council failed to extend rent stabilization before leaving for their summer recess, allowing landlords to massively increase rents and forcing tenants to leave their homes and the county. Since then, tenants have received rent increases of 20% and more. Join us for a phone zap telling the County Council that they need to pass temporary rent stabilization before more people are forced out of Montgomery County.

We will provide a script, talking points and phone numbers to everyone who RSVPs to this event. RSVP here.

For this phone zap, we’re offering people the option to either call on their own time during the day or join us to make calls together with Everyday Canvassing on a comrade’s deck starting at 5pm. For the evening portion, we’ll also be calling tenants to talk to them about rent stabilization! We’ll provide the address to all that RSVP to attend in person. The location is walkable from the Bethesda and Medical Center Metros.

Send a letter to the Council asking them to extend rent stabilization and sign up to get involved in our rent stabilization campaign here.


Writers, Editors, and Designers Needed for Disaster Relief Toolkit

Do you have experience putting together disaster plans? Are you a top-notch researcher or project leader? Do you just like helping folks and have a little bit of time to spare?? If so, then the DSA Mutual Aid Working Group (DSAMAWG) needs YOU to help us complete our Disaster Relief Toolkit! This toolkit will serve as DSA chapters’ go-to guidebook when it comes to preparing for and helping during/after natural disasters. DSAMAWG is looking for folks with a variety of skills to help us bring this project to completion. Email to get involved!


Tell Starbucks to Bargain in Good Faith with Workers in Olney, MD

Starbucks workers in Olney, MD voted overwhelmingly to unionize with Starbucks Workers United back in May 2022, citing short staffing and unfair scheduling. Workers have a proposal ready to go but Starbucks management has refused to come to the table. Workers are asking DSA and the community to show their support on social media and ask management to bargain in good faith.


Legislation to Extend Local Voting Rights to Immigrants Advances in District Council

Local activists made their way through the District Council this week to advance legislation that would extend local voting privileges to all DC residents regardless of immigration status. The legislation was approved by DC’s Judiciary Committee, meaning it will now advance to full council hearing later this month. The “Local Resident Voting Rights Amendment Act of 2022” would put DC alongside other local jurisdictions that allow non-citizen legal residents to vote in local elections. A positive breakthrough: the legislation was recently amended to extend voting rights to undocumented residents as well. Read the full story in DCist.

NoVA Branch DSA is Launching a New Workgroup on Labor and Union Organizing — Join our first “open” meeting!

After supporting a labor action in Prince William County weeks ago, the NoVA DSA Branch wants to establish a workgroup to expand and coordinate our efforts to support workers in the Northern VA region. This Sunday, Oct 2nd, 7:30pm we are hosting an “open meeting” and invite participation by any interested activists. We’ll discuss and brainstorm around local labor activities and how we might assist. We can discuss county workers, teachers, hosting “Sip-ins” for local Starbucks locations, and more.

Enjoy Metro DC DSA Walking Tours? Sign Up for a November 16 Training on How to Organize a Walking Tour!

If you enjoyed or are interested in Metro DC DSA Walking Tours and want to get more involved, sign up now for a 90-minute online training on How to Organize a Walking Tour: Training on Outdoor Political Education! The training takes place on Wednesday, November 16 at 8pm and will cover all aspects related to safe outdoor political education, with a specific focus on walking tours. The training will cover what topics work for a walking tour, how to conduct sign ups, and how to route tour attendees to continuing education and organizing. It will also cover logistical details such as how to coordinate supplies, find volunteer roles, send attendee reminders, arrange content and do follow up. The Political Education Working Group plans to hold outdoor political education events and walking tours this coming spring and summer — sign up now to get trained on how to help (and suggest some topics)! This sign up form is being shared well in advance to better shape the presentation’s design based on attendee interest.

After Impasse, Prince George’s Finalizes Agreement with Teachers Union

[From Union City] The Prince George’s school system and its teachers union ratified a new three-year contract last week that will boost teacher pay and increase time for teachers to plan lessons, reports the WaPo. “A lot of [the contract] helps start to give more control of the profession back to the educators, and starts to set the stage for our educators to have more autonomy and voice in their own profession,” said PGCEA President Dr. Donna Christy. Under the contract, teachers will get a 6% cost-of-living increase during the first fiscal year, which began July 1. It will be followed by a 4% increase the following year, and an additional 3% increase during the third fiscal year, beginning July 1, 2024.


Metro DC DSA’s annual chapter Convention is coming up in December (10th and 11th) along with the election of the 2023 Steering Committee. Wondering what our chapter’s bylaws require us to do as socialists and comrades? Read the current bylaws here. MDC DSA comrades may introduce resolutions and bylaw amendments in advance of the convention to be voted on by the General Body. Watch for upcoming workshops on these processes.

Publications Schedule — October MDC DSA Updates are scheduled for Fridays, Oct. 7, 14, 21 and 28, and the November issue of the Washington Socialist is scheduled for Friday, November 4. Join our Pubs WG gaggle in #publications channel or send articles to What do we publish? Check out the topic index.


Sunday, October 2

7:30 – 8:30pm | NoVA DSA Labor Open Meeting

Monday, October 3

9am – 8pm | Rent Stabilization Phone Zap

7 – 9pm | Navigating Public Service Loan Forgiveness — Socialist Night School

Wednesday, October 5

6 – 7pm | NoVA Tenant Organizing Meeting

7 – 8:30pm | Eugene V. Debs Reading Group

Thursday, October 6

6:15pm | Rally for LGBTQIA2S+ Students in Fairfax Co Schools — School Board Meeting

Friday, October 7

6:30 – 8:30pm | NoVA DSA Game Nite

Saturday, October 8

3– 4:30pm | Monthly Meeting for the MDC DSA newsletter

Thursday, October 13

6:30 – 8pm | NoVA DSA Monthly Organizing Meeting (hybrid attendance)

Sunday, October 23

7 – 9pm | MDC DSA General Body Meeting

Saturday, October 29 

3 – 4:30pm | Monthly meeting for release of the Washington Socialist newsletter

Sunday, October 30

5 – 6:30pm | Internationalism Working Group Monthly Meeting

7 – 8pm | NoVA Electoral Working Group Monthly Meeting


Open Streets, Georgia Ave | Vision Zero, District Bridges, et al

Saturday, October 1 from 9am to 3pm: Open Streets DC returns to Georgia Ave, running from Ward 4 through Ward 1. The street will be closed to car traffic from Missouri Ave down to Barry Place so community members can walk, jog, run, bike, scoot, roll or skate on a car-free Georgia Avenue. Small businesses and activities will also be featured along the strip.

Soil Regeneration and Cover Crop Workshop | Share a Seed

Get your garden ready for fall and winter! Learn how by joining Share a Seed in their second annual Cover Crop and Fall Garden Planning workshop at Upshur Community Garden this Saturday from 10:30am to 12:30pm. This is a great opportunity to learn the art and science of cover cropping and soil regeneration from a USDA expert. There will be a live cover crop demo and short talk, garden tours, and Share a Seed will have fall seeds and a custom DC-centric cover crop mix for guests to take home. RSVP required.

The Green Fair | Friends of Oxon Run

The first annual Green Fair at Oxon Run plans to be a day of celebration for the Ward 8 community. The theme of Year 1 will be “Think Green, Eat Green, Grow Green.” The Friends of Oxon Run believe that it is vital that the community become aware of and find an appreciation for healthy, more sustainable ways of living, as well as become advocates for the green space around them. The fair will feature food, music, art, live entertainment, petting zoo, presentations and much more.

Grow at Home Kit Building | Washington Youth Garden

Help Washington Youth Garden build their fabulous Grow at Home Kits for DC youth and their families to enjoy this fall! These kits include an activity guide that allows students to practice the scientific method, run their own experiments and create nutritious meals from what they grow. Kit building days are as follows: Tuesday, October 4th: 10am to 1pm; Saturday, Oct. 15th: 10am to 1pm; Saturday, Nov. 5th: 10am to 1pm. Sign up to volunteer here.

Fall/Winter Clothing Drive | Ward 4 Mutual Aid Unhoused Advocacy

Every Saturday in October, Ward 4 Mutual Aid’s Unhoused Advocacy cohort will be collecting warm coats, shirts, pants and winter accessories (scarves, gloves, boots) at Mosaic Church (4401 16th Street NW) from 1-3pm. Men’s clothing is preferred, but women’s clothing is also being accepted. Please no summer items, soiled or torn garments, or “dress” clothing. Message @ward4mutualaid_ua on Instagram if you’d like to make a donation, but can’t come on the set Saturday time.


A Ukrainian comrade writes in Jacobin: “As a socialist and internationalist, I abhor war. But the basic premise of self-determination justifies the resistance of ordinary Ukrainians to Vladimir Putin’s brutal invasion of our country.” Via Portside

Jamelle Bouie in the NYT: “Most Americans tend to think of Jim Crow almost exclusively in terms of racist oppression of Black Americans, but the Jim Crow system was as much about the preservation of a particular economic order as it was about the racist subjugation of Black people.”

Columbia Journalism Review analyzes the WaPo’s “Bezos Problem.” “As soon as Bezos started a Twitter war with President Biden, long-neglected concerns about his influence on the newsroom became considerably less abstract.”

Thom Hartmann spreads the brand new old news that “New findings from psychologists at universities in California and Georgia and published in the journal Cognitive Research show that the more often a statement — regardless of its truthfulness — is repeated, the more emphatically it’s believed. ‘Repeated information is often perceived as more truthful than new information. This finding is known as the illusory truth effect.’”

And speaking of the confirmation of common knowledge: from the CBO: “In 2019, families in the top 10 percent of the distribution held 72 percent of total wealth, and families in the top 1 percent of the distribution held more than one-third; families in the bottom half of the distribution held only 2 percent of total wealth.” These stark numbers come from the CBO’s just-released Trends in the Distribution of Family Wealth, 1989 to 2019.

Labour has a windfall advantage — can they make it work?  “Labour does have a titanic polling lead over the Tories — but it’s been built by the Tories nuking themselves, not by the political genius of the opposition. [Keir] Starmer now has every reason to feel confident about entering No 10. He may find, however, that that was the easy bit.” From The Guardian

In Italy, a country that once boasted enormous electoral participation — consistently above 90% through the 1980s — under 64% of the population turned out to bring the country back to fascism earlier this week. More on technocracy’s failure to combat the far right from Jacobin.

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