October 6, 2023

OCTOBER 6, 2023



  • Exploring the corrupting influence of tech disruptors through the DSA’s Big Tech and Capitalism: DC Walking Tour — Saturday, October 7

  • DSA members new and old invited to series on chapter training and skills development at Metro DC DSA 101: How To Do Things in the Chapter Thursday, October 12

  • Next Socialist Night School: The Mount Pleasant Uprising Thursday, October 12

Exploring the corrupting influence of tech disruptors through the DSA’s Big Tech and Capitalism: DC Walking Tour — Saturday, October 7

This Saturday, socialists will be uncovering the corrupting influence large technological “disruptors” have had in subverting labor laws and reshaping public policy in Washington, DC. The Big Tech and Capitalism Walking Tour will begin at 1pm this Saturday, October 7 in Farragut Square sign up link here. 

The Walking Tour will explore three sites in downtown DC connected to how tech firms undermined racial justice, used illegal lobbying to displace existing companies and used DC as a model to remake urban spaces around the world in Uber’s image over the last decade. The Walking Tour will be led by three scholars on labor in the DC region: Katie Wells, Kafui Attoh and Declan Cullen, the authors of the new book Disrupting DC: The Rise of Uber and the Fall of the City, who will draw on material and research from the book. The tour will adjourn at 3pm, followed by a happy hour afterward at the outdoor tables at Penn Quarter Sports Tavern. Sign up here.

DSA members new and old invited to series on chapter training and skills development at Metro DC DSA 101: How To Do Things in the Chapter Thursday, October 12

Have you ever wondered how the chapter is structured, what kinds of work we are pushing forward and what steps you can take to get more involved? Sign up to attend Metro DC DSA 101: How to Get Things Done in the Chapter, the first session in our new Nuts and Bolts training series, to learn more about the everyday details of how the chapter functions — and how you can navigate it. At the training, you will learn how the chapter and its formations are structured, how debate happens and decisions get made and get familiar with some of the tools and procedures that we use on a regular basis. There will be plentiful opportunities for questions and we hope you will come away ready to get involved in one of the many exciting areas of work the chapter is pursuing. 

This is the first of six sessions in the Nuts and Bolts training series, which will meet on Thursdays in October and November, with all sessions providing practical training designed to empower people to organize better within the chapter. The future sessions are on “Social Media and Comms for Socialists” (10/19), “How to Talk About Socialism” (10/26), “Power Mapping” (11/2), “How to Host a Great Event for Socialists” (11/9) and “How to Hold Effective Meetings” (11/16). Feel free to sign up for just one of those sessions, or you can attend them all. Sign up here.

Next Socialist Night School: The Mount Pleasant Uprising Thursday, October 12

Everyone is invited to sign up in advance for the Mount Pleasant Uprising Socialist Night School this Thursday, October 12 at 6pm, either online or at the Mount Pleasant Library. In this session, we will discuss the historical context behind the violence that rocked the Mount Pleasant neighborhood in May of 1991, focusing on changing neighborhood demographics, gentrification, immigration and policing practices during the 1980s and early 1990s. It will also assess the aftermath of the protests and looting, including the effectiveness of reforms proposed by Latinx leaders in the wake of May 1991. This session will be led by Patrick Scallen, editor of Washington History magazine and a historian of the Salvadoran immigrant population in the metropolitan Washington, DC area. Sign up here for the event and to get the link to the online portion of the discussion.


NoVA Medicare 4 All’s collecting petition signatures in support of Medicare for All — Saturday, October 7

From 9:30 to 11am, volunteers with NoVA Branch DSA and Grassroots Alexandria will be gathering outside the Shirlington Library in Arlington to gather petition signatures for the Arlington Medicare For All Resolution. You are welcome to join us RSVP here.


Social Housing working group to table and canvass at Georgia Avenue Open Streets — Saturday, October 7

Metro DC DSA’s Social Housing working group will be collecting signatures in support of a Green New Deal for Housing this Saturday, October 7, starting at 10am. Organizers will be meeting at the statue by Petworth Metro station. Socialists or allies interested in boosting this decommodified form of housing policy are invited to attend — RSVP here. And of course, members and community neighbors are invited to say hi and to discuss housing policy in DC.

To save our planet and our rents, DC residents are encouraged to sign this petition urging your DC Councilmembers that a strong Green New Deal for Housing is necessary. Want to learn more? Visit the Social Housing working group’s campaign homepage for educational materials and all upcoming meetings and canvasses, or send an email to social.housing.wg@gmail.com to get in touch.

DC Free Brake Light scheduled for Saturday, October 14

Metro DC DSA’s Brake Light Clinic will take place next Saturday, October 14. At our brake light clinics, socialist mechanics fix people’s tail and brake lights for free to educate the public on removing police from traffic enforcement. Need a repair or know someone who does? Fill out this form so mechanics know what to plan for. The process for fixing brake lights is simple, but will help in reducing community interactions with police and help educate the community on legislation that activists are interested in passing in DC in the near future. DSA members, neighbors or anyone in need of a repair are invited to attend. If you would like to request a repair for the October 14 event or would like to volunteer to learn about the process, follow through to the appropriate link on this form.


Socialists mobilizing to support UAW strikers in Winchester, Virginia (and Martinsburg, West Virginia)

UAW workers are on strike against Stellantis in Winchester, Virginia. Comrades are working to mobilize Metro DC DSA members to support the workers on the picket line — fill out this carpool form to help organize caravans to Winchester. Picketing is taking place every day from 6am to midnight.


MDC DSA Publications Schedule: This is the first Update of October, and includes the October Washington Socialist. This month’s Weekly Updates will arrive on Fridays, October 13, 20, and 27. 

Would you like to participate in MDC DSA’s publications? We write, we edit, we design, we do the tech — there are so many ways your hand could lighten the load. Check us out on #publications and let us know what you would like to write, or write about, or …?. 

If you would like to see something included in the Update, suggestions can be submitted to the tip line.

Quick reference links for MDC DSA:

AND “live from our studio,” Why You Should Join DSA/New Member Orientation with live Q&A on Wednesday October 11, 8 to 9pm, followed on Thursday, October 12 with the first in our Nuts & Bolts series, 7 to 8:45pm | MDC DSA 101 — How to do things in the chapter


Friday, October 6

4pm | Commercial Cleaners Strike Vote Rally

6:30pm | NoVA Gamenite at The Board Room

Saturday, October 7

9:30 – 11am | NoVA Medicare 4 All Arlington Petition Outreach

10am – 3pm | Canvass for Social Housing

1 – 3pm | Big Tech and Capitalism: DC Walking Tour

9am – 8pm | VA-DSA Statewide Social Gathering of Comrades

Wednesday, October 11

7pm | Repro Justice Working Group Meeting

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

Thursday, October 12

6:15 – 7:30pm | NoVA Branch Monthly Organizing Meeting

7 – 8:45pm | MDC DSA 101 — How to do things in the chapter

Tuesday, October 17th

6 – 7pm | NoVA Medicare for All Working Group Meeting

Wednesday, October 18th

7 – 8pm | Defund NoVA Police Working Group Meeting


DC Emergency Rental Assistance Program (ERAP) Reopened | Councilmember Lewis George

ERAP helps low-income District residents who are facing housing emergencies by providing funding for overdue rent, including late fees and court costs if the qualified household is facing eviction. The program also supports security deposits and the first month’s rent for residents moving into new apartments. After the program abruptly ran out of money earlier this year, applications have now reopened. Residents can learn more and apply at erap.dhs.dc.gov, call 202-507-6666, or head to the Department of Human Services website to learn more.

Banned Books Week | DC Public Library (DCPL)

We’re almost at the end of Banned Books Week (October 1-7) — have you checked out all the great offerings from the library and local book sellers throughout DC? Throughout October, DCPL offers a variety of special programs and activities that celebrate the public library’s role as a space of intellectual and creative freedom — including the Banned Book Scavenger Hunt! Books in the scavenger hunt are free and are hidden at locations across DC; those who collect all six books will discover a special composite design on the spines. Clues for the scavenger hunt and more info about Banned Books Week happenings throughout October can be found here.

Fall Festival | Wangari Gardens

Wangari Community Gardens annual Fall Festival is back and welcomes all neighbors in Park View (and beyond) to gather for a day in the garden on October 28 from 12 to 4pm. There will be great live music, free local food, workshops, games and more — costumes encouraged!

Artist Call | American University Community Garden

The student-led garden at American University is looking for artists interested in selling or displaying their work in the space. Garden-themed art will be prioritized, but all artists and art-types will be considered. Reach out via Instagram DM by October 22 if interested, or for questions.


“Joe Biden’s newly unveiled American Climate Corps is set to provide green jobs training to just 20,000 people. It falls far short of the ambitious public jobs program the Left has long demanded.” From Jacobin.

The last couple years have been a time of left-wing optimism in South America, with (broadly) leftist leaders defeating right-wing challengers in Colombia, Brazil and Chile. But in Argentina, William Callison warns, the far right is on the rise. From Sidecar.

From the Washington Post: “More than 75,000 Kaiser Permanente workers walked off the job Wednesday, launching a three-day strike with direct implications for patients who saw delayed appointments and some closed facilities across the heavily unionized health-care organization.” More than a quarter million Americans are currently on strike.

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