October 20, 2023
Solidarity march calling for an end to genocide — Saturday, October 21
Montgomery County Decriminalization Coalition relaunches — Sunday, October 22
- Nuts and Bolts: How to Talk About Socialism — Thursday, October 26
Democratic Socialists call for ceasefire in battles between Israel, Hamas — Solidarity march on Saturday, October 21st calling for an end to genocide
Over the past week, massive protests sparked in cities across the US and the world in opposition to Israel’s destruction of Gaza. In response to an attack led by Hamas — a political and paramilitary organization operating out of Gaza — Israel initiated a siege on Gaza and began an indiscriminate shelling of the territory. As Israel’s leaders describe Palestinians as “human animals” to justify its war crimes and collective punishment against an entire population, bipartisan bloodlust and Islamophobia in the US have already led to the murder of a 6-year-old Palestinian American child. More than 3,000 Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank, including 1,000 children, have been incinerated in explosions or crushed under rubble.
In Washington, a shocked and enraged working-class has been standing up in defiance to Israel’s outrageous injustice. Last Saturday, thousands took to the streets in protests led by American Muslims for Palestine. Throughout the week, protesters led by Jewish Voice for Peace and If Not Now — two anti-Zionist Jewish organizations advocating for an end to Palestinian apartheid — heroically blockaded the White House and led peaceful protests on the Capitol Building, urging a change in American acquiescence to the atrocities committed by its client state in Israel.
Protests will continue throughout the next few weeks in defiance of the government’s cruel and inhumane posture: Join Metro DC DSA, American Muslims for Palestine and other partner organizations to call for a ceasefire now, accountability for Israel’s crimes in Gaza and freedom for Palestine. Metro DC DSA is coordinating with AMP and other groups from across the country to put together a massive march from the Lincoln Memorial to Congress, starting at 1pm on Saturday, October 21. Sign up here so we can all keep in touch, march together and be a visible presence in solidarity with our allies and those under attack now in Palestine.
Additionally, on November 4 at 12pm, there will be a National March on Washington for a Free Palestine. You can also find more upcoming protests here. If you would like to help the people of Gaza directly, but are unable to attend a rally in person, consider donating to one of the many organizations who are providing direct relief to the people of Palestine, such as the Hebron International Resource Network, Medical Aid for Palestinians, the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, Al-Awda, or KinderUSA. National DSA is also coordinating Congressional emails and phonebanking that you can get involved with here. Do not sit on the sidelines of genocide.
Montgomery County Decriminalization Coalition relaunches — Sunday, October 22
Since 2020, Montgomery County DSA has organized in coalition with other social and racial justice organizations to get police out of Montgomery County Public Schools and to end the practice of treating students — especially Black and Brown students — as criminals. That coalition is relaunching as the Montgomery County Decriminalization Coalition and you are invited to the launch party. Come out on Sunday, October 22 at 3pm to Gene Lynch Urban Park in Silver Spring (8410 Colesville Rd) to learn about what we can do together to forge a path towards safer traffic enforcement, a fairer education system and a community where all residents can live and thrive without the threat of state violence. If you are unable to make this event but interested in policing and abolition work in Montgomery County, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nuts and Bolts: How to Talk About Socialism — Thursday, October 26
Sign up now to attend the in-person “How to Talk About Socialism” training this coming Thursday, October 26 at 6pm at Shaw Library (1630 7th Street NW). This training will give participants an opportunity to practice talking through what socialism is with trainers. We think every DSA member should feel confident having these sorts of conversations, but that confidence requires learning and practice. The training will be followed by a happy hour. RSVP here for this or the other great upcoming trainings in the fall Nuts and Bolts series.
DSA launches “No Money for Massacres” Campaign to stop US support for Gazan genocide
The American government is failing to stand up for Palestinians and is turning a blind eye to genocide. The capitalist war machine has worked overtime manufacturing consent for ethnic cleansing. But the truth is, more Americans stand with Palestine than ever. The Democratic Socialists are doing their part to make this undeniable, from the streets, all the way up through Congress.
Last week, the DSA launched “No Money for Massacres!” — a phonebanking campaign aiming to put acute political pressure on elected government officials to support a ceasefire resolution and end US military support to Israel. Since DSA launched the No Money for Massacres phonebanks, three targeted US Reps (Barbara Lee, Greg Casar and Pramila Jayapal) have signed on to a ceasefire resolution introduced by elected DSA members Cori Bush and Rashida Tlaib. CLICK HERE to visit the campaign website and join the line.
National DSA also released a national toolkit to accompany the campaign which you can find here.
Kaiser Permanente’s Union Coalition reaches tentative agreement
In another victory for organized labor, the Coalition of Kaiser Permanente Unions reached a tentative agreement with management after a string of strikes across the country involving over 75,000 medical administrative and support staff. The tentative agreement increases wages 6% every year for the duration of the agreement, adds additional protections against outsourcing, recommits management to increased hiring to end their egregious staffing shortages, and ends a loophole that previously allowed Kaiser Permanente to deny granting a yearly performance bonus to workers if management failed to meet their own arbitrary financial goals. The agreement still needs to be ratified by the workers.
Socialist Feminist Section Happy Hour — Thursday, October 26
Join the Socialist Feminist Section at Continental Pool Lounge (right next to the Rosslyn Metro) from 6 to 8:30pm for a fun night of drinks, socializing and smashing the patriarchy. Look for the table with the DSA sign and people wearing DSA merch.
Repro Justice Monthly Open Meeting — Wednesday, November 8
The Repro Justice Working Group is holding their monthly open meeting at Midlands Beer Garden, starting at 6:30pm. Join them as they discuss an article on reproductive justice (article to be determined) over drinks. Come early, come late, come all.
Get your socialist wardrobe staples for fall
With the leaves turning and the air becoming crisp, it’s time to don some layers of chapter merch! Metro DC DSA’s Merch Store has hats, tees and hoodies that will keep you warm this fall. Each item is proudly union-made.
MDC DSA Publications Schedule: This month’s final Weekly Update is Friday, October 27. Next issue of the Washington Socialist is scheduled for Friday, November 3, with an article deadline of October 28. Submit to email@example.com.
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:
- Metro DC DSA chapter’s website
- Our local structure — campaigns, working groups, etc.
- Capsule introduction to the chapter including our branches covering the DMV
- A home-grown history of our local chapter
- Archive of the Washington Socialist
- Archive of our MDC DSA Socialist Night School (recordings and some transcriptions)
- National DSA’s website
- DSA Feed, an RSS feed that aggregates multiple DSA publications — including our own Washington Socialist — in one convenient place. More from the National Tech Committee here.
And, “live from our studio,” Wednesday, October 25th, 8 – 9pm | Why You Should Join DSA/New Member Orientation with Q&A avails.
DSA CALENDAR OF EVENTS
Wednesday, October 25
Thursday, October 26
6 – 7:30pm | How to Talk About Socialism: Training for Members
Sunday, October 29
Tuesday, October 31
Wednesday, November 1
7 – 8pm | Defund NoVA Police Working Group Meeting
Thursday, November 2
6 – 7pm | Social Housing Organizing Meeting
6 – 7:30pm | Nuts and Bolts: Power Mapping
Friday, November 3
6:30pm | NoVA DSA Gamenite November
Sunday, November 5
6 – 7pm | NoVA Electoral Working Group Meeting
Tuesday, November 7
Wednesday, November 8
6:30 – 8pm | Repro Justice Working Group’s Monthly Open Meeting
Thursday, November 9
6:30 – 7:45pm | NoVA Branch Monthly Organizing Meeting
Southwest DC Food Drive | Serve Your City / Ward 6 Mutual Aid
Now through November 18, Serve Your City will be accepting non-perishable foods and toiletry donations at Christ Methodist Church (900 4th Street SW). Donations can be dropped off on Wednesdays from 3 to 5pm and on Saturdays from 12 to 2pm. Donations can also be made online here.
Outdoor Opportunities for DMV POC | Soul Trak
Soul Trak, a community-based organization dedicated to facilitating community, recreation, service and leadership for racial minorities in nature, has two great events coming up this month for those looking to get outdoors and in the community. On October 21, Soul Trak will host a Social Hike at Seneca Creek State Park in Gaithersburg, MD, from 9am to 12pm and on October 29, they will collaborate with the Washington Area Bicyclists Association for a Confident City Cycling class from 10am to 1pm that kicks off from the Anacostia Boat House. See details for these events and other upcoming activities 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 are encouraged!
The Green Scream at The Well | The Green Scheme
The Green Scheme is back on October 28 from 1 to 4pm for a second year in a row of family-friendly Halloween fun at DC Greens’ urban farm, The Well at Oxon Run (300 Valley Ave SE). The Green Scream is open to community members of all ages. Free costumes for kids, face painting, games and snacks will be provided.
Ward 1 Mutual Aid Fundraiser | Lyman’s Tavern
Lyman’s Tavern is partnering with DC Brau to host a fundraiser for DC Ward 1 Mutual Aid on October 31 at 6pm. All proceeds from the sales of DC Brau’s Public, Corruption and Seltzer cans will be donated to Ward 1 Mutual Aid and their efforts to directly aid Ward 1 residents in need. Come out and be festive this Halloween while donating to a good cause.
GOOD READS / ESSENTIAL TRAFFIC
A cautionary tale: What DSA Can Learn From Organizational Death in the Student Movement. A decades-long rightist assault on membership organizations led to the collapse of the US Student Association in 2017. What can organizers take away from the last decade of organizational death in the student movement? From The Forge via Portside
Climate Opportunism — the usual private-equity suspects are scooping up a crucial labor force in the low-carbon residential sector. How expensive can heat pumps get? They expect to show us. From the American Prospect
After 112 Years, Triangle Shirtwaist Fire Victims Get a Memorial. The 1911 fire at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory in New York killed 146 workers, mostly young immigrant women, and galvanized the US labor movement. After 112 years, there is finally a striking and permanent memorial on the site. NYT via Portside
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.