For April 21-28 (and beyond)
The Washington Socialist Weekly Update aims to keep you and your fellow activists informed and your calendars as well-managed as possible (some of that is up to you) and fill in the gaps between the monthly appearances of Metro DC DSA’s newsletter, The Washington Socialist
We’re embarking on a very full ten days, with protests, actions and parades combining in the unmistakable form of resistance and demands for the alternatives we know will bring everyone a better life. Here’s the essential road map, below. But first, some members outline what has been happening.
>>DC Reinvest Coalition Aims to Redirect the City’s Investments to Its Own Communities
The Washington Socialist Weekly Update (4/21/2017)
By Alex Banks
The city of Washington, DC invests $2 billion in Wells Fargo, which supports dirty pipelines (like Dakota Access), private prisons, and racist, predatory lending practices. The solution: push the city toward full divestment. Tuesday evening at the Southwest Library, the newly formed coalition known as DC ReInvest gathered for a public mass meeting. DC DSA was well accounted for with seven of our comrades present along with representatives from most of the other six founding organizations: 350 DC, Rising Hearts, SURJ DC, Socialist Alternative and DC Fights Back. Led by SA's Sarko Sarkodie, the meeting welcomed newcomers to the campaign, which in the short term aims to have DC (as well as individuals) cut ties with Wells Fargo while seeing the District reinvest back into its communities over the long haul.
So far the campaign has had some typical highs: getting 6 out of 13 of the DC Council to endorse our proposal of divestment; and lows: being stonewalled by Council Financial Committee chair Jack Evans (Ward 2) thus putting a hold on the proposal moving forward. The meeting ran for about an hour and a half with plenty of audience participation. I invite members to join this effort and am happy to try to answer any further questions.
Overall, it was a very inviting and informative affair with plenty of valuable knowledge offered. If anybody is interested in any upcoming events, check out the DCReInvest Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/DCReInvest/?ref=br_rs as well as their Twitter page: https://twitter.com/DCReInvest
>>People’s Budget Aims for Spending Alternatives -- Austin Kendall of the Economic Justice Committee attended this week’s meeting of the People’s Budget Forum, a coalition project that is developing an emerging alternative budget for the District, unlike the one proposed by Mayor Bowser that is distinguished by its tax giveaways to the wealthy and poor public provision for issues like housing and jobs – dire needs of communities like the slumlord-run Barry Farms, where the meeting took place. Read Kendall’s complete report.
>> Airport workers win living wage after 2-year campaign Sam Nelson reported Wednesday afternoon to the Economic Justice Committee (and our readers) in an “Update on the Fight for 15 front: Dulles and National airport workers will see a pay bump of $4 in January, with wages eventually getting to $12.75. This is a huge first step on the road to 15, thanks to all who came out to the various rallies and such…” Here is the account from Union City Thursday morning:
“Local airport workers won a huge victory yesterday when their two-year campaign for a living wage finally paid off. The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority approved a new policy ensuring that airport contractors pay their employees a living wage. The airport workers -- including wheelchair and checkpoint agents, terminal cleaners, cabin cleaners, sky caps and baggage handlers, many of whom now earn as little as minimum wage -- could see hourly wages increase to $12.75. "I never thought I'd live to see the day," said DCA airport worker David Tucker, who's worked at the airport for fifty years. "This raise will be great," said UNITE HERE Local 23 member Divina Stinchcomb, an airline catering employee of LSG Sky Chefs at Reagan National Airport. "For me, and I know for my coworkers, this will change my life." While SEIU 32BJ Vice President Jaime Contreras called the move “a step in the right direction," he said that workers still need $15 an hour and a union "to reach the light at the end of a long tunnel of poverty. These men and women," Contreras added, "continue to face intimidation and retaliation by employers and need the protection that only a union can provide."
ACTIVIST CALENDAR FOR APRIL 21-MAY 2
Saturday April 22
►Buzzard Point Community Cleanup with Empower DC 9 a.m. – noon. 100-106 N St. NW, DC 20024 Work with community organization members to clean, plant, paint etc. Info MDCDSA Climate Change and Environmental Justice committee.
►MDCDSA Economic Justice Committee meets Saturday 12:30 p.m. to 2 at Petworth Library.
The living wage for airline contractor employees at National and Dulles Airports was raised yesterday, we'll hear from a UNITE HERE local 23 rank and file organizer involved in the struggle on what's next. Aaron will talk about a healthcare town hall and project for universal coverage. We'll also be talking People’s Climate March and May Day and how we can build momentum from what promises to be a part of the revolutionary event.
►Climate Change and Environmental Justice committee flyering for our April 28 panel “Building the Green Economy” before the March for Science Sat, April 22 -- meet 2 p.m. at 89 Constitution Ave. NW
Sunday, April 23
►Picnic to Fund #PaidLeave4DC hosted by Jews United for Justice, Sunday 2-4 p.m. at Malcolm X Park, 2400 15th St NW. Universal Paid Leave Act was passed in December but startup funding was not allocated in Mayor Bowser's recent budget. Join Economic Justice Committee members as they speak with community organizations to coordinate next steps.
►Socialist Feminism Reading Group Sun Apr 23 4 p.m. RSVP held at the Kogod Courtyard at the National Portrait Gallery in Chinatown, 8th and F Streets, NW (map) Join us as we explore and discuss topics within Socialist Feminism! Current selections are from Women: Class and the Feminist Imagination Learn more
►Progressive Maryland will be joining more than 30 other grassroots organizations from around the country in Washington, DC starting Sunday, April 23 (through Tuesday 4/25) for the founding convention of our new national organization, People's Action. At the convention we will: Build a Long-Term Agenda that points the way to transformative change and guides our campaigns now; Commit to stopping the attacks on people of color, immigrants, women, Muslims and LGBTQ people; Gather with friends and allies to celebrate what we have won and the movement we are building together. Information here.
►Our Revolution Maryland's first statewide meeting. Sunday, April 23 3:30 p.m. Tommy Douglas Conference Center 10000 New Hampshire Ave
Silver Spring, MD 20903. A livestream with Nina Turner, Larry Cohen, Ben Jealous and DSA member Mike Connolly follows the meeting. Info and RSVP
►6 p.m. mass volunteer meeting for building the People’s Climate March, Friends’ Meeting House. Info
►Sunday evening (April 23) is article deadline for the May issue of the Washington Socialist monthly DCDSA newsletter. Send article submissions to Woody at firstname.lastname@example.org
Monday, April 24
►Affordable Housing Crisis Meeting hosted by our allies at ONE DC, rally at 5 p.m. before the upcoming Zoning Commission decision for Brookland Manor. 441 4th St. NW (Judiciary Square metro) Info here.
►Direct Action Training and Opportunities IWW (Industrial Workers of the World) has extended an invitation to Metro DC DSA to participate in their semi-regular direct action training this coming Monday, April 24 from 6-10 p.m. This training will cover various topics such as marshaling/security, de-escalation tactics, picketing, and how to speak to the media. After the training you will have an opportunity to sign up for a couple upcoming actions/events that IWW will be leading over May Day weekend, including helping to marshal at the May Day march that DSA's march will join up with at Malcolm X park. If you might be interested in more information on this training session and signing up, please contact Brian Dickey at email@example.com.
Tuesday, April 25
►From CC&EJ committee: 100% Clean Energy Bill Launch w/ Jeff Merkley & Bernie Sanders Tue, April 25, 11:45 a.m – 12:30 p.m. at Russell Senate Office Building … info
►Panel: Community Lens: Public Transportation in the DMV 7-8:30 pm
A look at one of our region's most crucial resources; public transportation. This panel will explore how equity, worker rights, and our changing climate are connected. Panelists will offer community solutions for how we can have a robust public transportation system that is safe, reliable, affordable, and reduces the impact of climate change. Moderator: Sigute Meilus , Executive Director, Americans for Transit; Panelists: Zuri Tesheira: ATU Local 689; Ben Ross: Action Committee for Transit; Claudia Barragan: Environmental Justice Committee, DC Sierra Club; David Schwartzman: DC Statehood Green Party <> MDCDSA is a co-sponsor.
St Stephen and the Incarnation Church, 1525 Newton St NW -- Columbia Heights Station, Green Line Metro, also S2, S4, 42, and 43 bus lines
Wednesday, April 26
►Socialism vs Capitalism: A Debate Wed Apr 26 6:30 p.m. RSVP ICC Auditorium-Georgetown University 37TH AND O ST., N.W., (map) Ryan Mosgrove, National Organizer for Young Democratic Socialists, and Charlie Kirk, Founder and Executive Director of Turning Point USA, will engage in a friendly debate on whether millennials should fight for socialism or capitalism. Both are college-based groups. This event will be livestreamed via Facebook Live! Stay tuned for the link! Further information
Thursday, April 27
►DSA Happy Hour Thu Apr 27 6:30 p.m. RSVP held at Sudhouse 1340 U Street NW, Washington, DC (map)
Join us as we relax and enjoy some brews with our brothers and sisters of DC DSA. No agenda, no schedule, no topic, just some good conversation and beer. Learn more
Friday, April 28
It Takes Roots Action: Mother Earth's RED LINE -- Friday, Apr 28 “Direct action against the corporations and politicians driving the extractive economy” 2-4 p.m. submitted by our CC&EJ committee. Information and directions
►BUILDING THE GREEN ECONOMY Friday April 28th 6:30pm: Doors open at Friends Meeting of Washington (2111 Florida Ave NW, Washington, DC 20008). Metro DC DSA is proud to host Building the Green Economy, a panel discussion on the intersections of economic and environmental justice. Is a meaningful reduction in carbon emissions possible under capitalism? What are the political obstacles to a fair, ecologically-sustainable society? Join us for an evening of invigorating discussion with environmentalists, activists, and academics. Panelists— Author Gar Alperovitz; UMD Anthropologist Shirley Fiske: NAACP’s Jacqui Patterson, PSL activist Eugene Puryear: psychologist Margaret Klein Salamon. Moderated by Metro DC DSA member and journalist Sam Knight. Panel at 7 at Friends Meeting and open house later at 1301 Conn. Ave NW, 6th Fl. (DSA office) at 9:15. $5 donation requested. RSVP
Saturday, April 29
►People’s Climate Movement — March for Jobs, Justice, & the Climate Saturday, April 29 Information on DCDSA's participation is at the link. National DSA and DCDSA are both co-sponsors.
Sunday, April 30
►Sunday April 30 the MoCo Our Revolution group meets at the Gaithersburg Library 2-4 p.m., regular monthly meeting, info here.
►Socialist Book Group meets Sunday, April 30 to discuss Matthew Desmond’s Evicted: Poverty and Property in the American City 3-5 p.m., Kogod Courtyard at National Portrait Gallery.
Monday, May 1
►DC DSA MARCH ON MAY DAY Monday, May 1st In observance of International Workers’ Day, Metro DC DSA is organizing a massive rally and march to show support and solidarity for workers around the world. Metro DC DSA is extremely proud to be working with Many Languages One Voice DC (MLOV), CASA, and the DC May Day Steering Committee to promote labor rights and other issues that directly affect the working class here in DC as well as around the world. The schedule:
12:00 p.m. -- Convene at Lamont Park (3258 Mt Pleasant St NW, Washington, DC) in the Mt. Pleasant neighborhood for a joint rally with MLOV and other local organizers.
1:00 p.m. -- March to Malcolm X Park (officially called Meridian Hill Park, 2400 15th St NW, Washington, DC) to unite with the DC May Day rally.
1:30 p.m. -- March to the White House (Lafayette Square, Pennsylvania Ave NW & 16th Street Northwest, Washington, DC) for a massive demonstration led by CASA.
Closest Metro Station at Start: Columbia Heights (3030 14th Street NW Washington, DC 20009)
Closest Metro Station at Finish: McPherson Square (1400 I St NW, Washington, DC 20005)
To RSVP for DSA’s rally and march, visit http://bit.ly/2owpUiY
To RSVP for DC May Day rally and march, visit http://bit.ly/2p2tkdW
Help show that there is widespread support for radical change towards a sustainable economy run for and by workers! Here's an article from Cosecha via Portside on planning for some of May Day's actions
GOOD READS AND DIVERSIONS
►Among the week’s Good Reads – US readers might have had to turn to the Guardian for actual US peace community response to the “Mother of all Bombs” deployment.
►“How to Jam the Trump Brand” – members are sharing and touting this Naomi Klein video.
►With the end of the Maryland legislative session, attention is turning to the 2018 gubernatorial race. Progressive Maryland member Hal Ginsberg made a case for Ben Jealous in this op-ed in the Baltimore Sun.
About The Washington Socialist
.The Washington Socialist is Metro DC DSA's monthly e-newsletter. Focusing on our local's events, socialist analyses of current events and book reviews, among other topics, The Washington Socialist is a great way to stay on top of the progressive goings-on in DC, Maryland and northern Virginia. We also encourage our readers to submit their own articles! Contact Editor Woody Woodruff for more info at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get the Washington Socialist delivered directly to your inbox every month!
Past issues of The Washington Socialist from 2012-June 2016 are available for viewing on our archive page.