DSA National Convention
Delegates met November 13 through 15 in rural Pennsylvania. Of particular interest to Chicago DSA, Peg Strobel was re-elected to the National Political Committee, DSA’s functional equivalent to a board of directors. For more details, see Barbara Joye’s account at Democratic Left. An album of photos from the convention is HERE.
The Young Democratic Socialists will be meeting February 12 through 14 in New York City.
City of Chicago DSA
Chicago DSA covers the Chicago metropolitan area in Chicago, zip codes 600 through 609. It’s a big expanse. While we have had members from DeKalb and Kankakee come to meetings, even serve on the Executive Committee, it’s a long way to come. So we encourage folks to form branches and YDS chapters. The latest branch, in formation, is a branch for the city itself. The first meeting will be on Wednesday, December 16, at the Harold Washington Library. You can get more information and RSVP HERE.
DSA in the News
Elizabeth Whitman at the International Business Times mentioned New York DSA’s debate watching party first in a round-up of such events in New York City.
As a preview to Bernie Sanders’ speech on democratic socialism, WNPR’s Colin McEnroe Show included DSA’s Maria Svart as part of a discussion about the past, present and future of American socialism. In response to the speech, John Nichols mentioned DSA at The Nation: “Can Democratic Socialism Pass the Electability Test?” Harold Meyerson (who “hasn’t been to a DSA meeting in years”) pretty much agrees with Sanders’ definition of socialism at The American Prospect. Georgetown University’s The Hoya carried an account of Sanders’ speech by Toby Hung that included quotes from DSA staff David Duhalde and member Jules Bernstein.
Boulder Weekly posted an account of the DSA National Convention by David Anderson.
Samuel Hux found his former affiliation with DSA and socialism a useful ornamentation for an ornamental essay at New English Review.
Central New Jersey DSA protested Governor Chris Christie’s bigoted stance toward Syrian refugees with a picket line outside his home and were written up by Lindsay Rittenhouse for nj.com, a web site for several New Jersey newspapers. An account by Charles Kim is posted at Democratic Left.
CBS News New York’s coverage of the Million Student March didn’t actually mention DSA, but it did focus on William Paterson University’s event with quotes from YDS activist Tyler Brenes, who helped organize the protest, and extended shots of the WPU YDS banner.
Democratic Socialism and the Rise of Student Protests in 2015
A statement by the YDS Coordinating Committee begins:
Over the last few weeks, student activism across the country has generated a successful wave of protests over the continuation of micro-aggressions, global White Supremacy, and student debt. The first protests at the University of Missouri ignited when University President Timothy Wolfe presented no action against the racial incidents occurring on their campus, including a swastika drawn on the wall with human feces. Following this, protests at Yale sparked as a result of email threads debating the effects and outcomes of cultural appropriation. At Harvard Law School, students woke up to hate crimes and defacing the portraits of tenured black professors. In addition students, including members of Young Democratic Socialists (YDS), across the country at Ithaca College, the City College of New York, Hamilton College, William Paterson University, UC Riverside and UC Davis among others held demonstrations in solidarity with the racial justice protests occurring, but also to demand an end to student debt. Alongside the student protests, political violence has emerged all over the country in an attempt to impose fear. In Minneapolis, five BLM organizers were targeted and shot by white supremacists. We live in a time of great crisis.
Socialist International Council
DSA’s affiliation with the Socialist International was a subject for debate at the recent DSA National Convention. For the time being, DSA is still a member. The Socialist International Council met in Luanda, Angola, November 27 and 28. An account of the meeting is (or will be) HERE.
Norvelt: Hope Only in Hard Times?
Episode 58 of Talkin’ Socialism: Chicago DSA’s Peg Strobel in conversation with Margaret Power, co-author with Timothy Kelly and Michael Cary, of Hope in Hard Times: Norvelt and the Struggle for Community During the Great Depression, a discussion the New Deal planned community of Norvelt, Pennsylvania. Margaret Power explains how her personal history intersects with Norvelt and provides some insights as to how and why the politics of this region has changed since the Great Depression of the 1930s.
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