The Big Scary “S” Word and Economic Democracy

Karen Narefsky | Rep. Zohran Mamdani | Rep. Darrin Madison Jr. 

Anna Dvorak | Rep. Ryan Clancy

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, In These Times, Jacobin, DSA National Electoral Committee

One hundred years ago, Milwaukee and the Big Apple were centers of power for the Socialist Party of America. A century after socialist and labor organizers used mass politics to secure wins for working class people, both cities have sent socialist caucuses to their respective state capitols. 

The stories of democratic socialist organizing in Milwaukee and New York City offer complementary perspectives of how organizers and public officials can leverage our collective power. Like other organizing campaigns the How We Win series has highlighted, these regions’ chapters and organizers are working with democratic socialist officeholders and their staff to advance policy and shift the dynamics in State Houses in favor of working people. 

This webinar covers a range of topics, including how grassroots organizers navigate working with public officials in friendly and not-so-friendly environments. With political power behind push for reforms, organizers can have a stronger platform to achieve policy wins.

Winning Policy Change Together: How We Win With Socialists in Office

Councilmember Robin Wonsley | Councilmember Jason Chavez | Mike D. | Alderperson Jorge DeFendini | Genevieve Rand

Co-Sponsor: DSA National Electoral Committee | Dissent | In These Times

A growing number of local and state governments have socialist officials joining their ranks, so how can local organizers and DSA chapters work with them to achieve policy wins and advance socialist goals? 

The How We Win series shares lessons and how-to experience from policy campaigns and organizing around the country, showing how democratic-socialist organizers and coalitions can advance and achieve tangible wins that support our economic and social goals. Learn what strategies have worked as well as obstacles organizers face along the way, and the path forward to build strong governing coalitions between local organizers and public officials.

“40 Years of DSA: Founding & Future” at Socialism 2022

DSA was founded in 1982—a low tide in the US left. Since 2016, it’s become home to tens of thousands of new organizers. In our panel at Socialism Conference 2022, hear from DSA Fund Chair David Duhalde and other longtime members on DSA’s early days and the many changes since.

How We Win: Local Worker Rights Campaigns

Ana Gonzalez | Jaslin Kaur | Michael Lighty | Kate Sykes 

Co-Sponsor: DSA Labor, NYC DSA’s Debt and Finance Working Group and Labor Branch, LPE Project, Convergence, Dissent, In These Times

Watch the second event in the DSA Fund’s series on How We Win, where you’ll get an inside look at worker rights campaigns in Portland, Maine; New York City; and Austin, Texas. In a time of growing labor solidarity and union recognition campaigns, what else can democratic socialists do to achieve worker justice victories?

Panelists will respond to audience questions and discuss the longer view of what coalitions and governments can do—nationally and locally—to strengthen worker rights and labor justice, and to organize toward an economy that meets the needs of all, not profits for the few.

How We Win: Local Housing Campaigns

Jabari Brisport | Robin Wonsley Worlobah | Elizabeth Stark | Brigitte Temple 

Co-Sponsor: DSA Housing Justice Commission, Dissent Magazine, Housing Justice Center (MN), In These Times, Housing Equity Now St. Paul, Charlottesville DSA

Watch the first event in the How We Win series where we’ll get an inside look at successful housing justice campaigns in Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN; Charlottesville, VA; and New York—what democratic socialist organizers and coalitions did to achieve these victories, and what it takes to implement those wins as effective policy.

Panelists discuss their respective housing campaigns, strategies that worked (and didn’t), what they won (so far), and what happens next. They’ll respond to your questions and discuss the longer view of where they see we need to go now to win on good housing as a right and ways we can work to get there.

Not Dead Yet: Ending Ageism

Margaret Morganroth Gullette | Susan Chacin | Paul Garver 

Co-Sponsor: Democratic Left

The past two years of the pandemic have revealed in stark terms how ageism affects access to services including health care. This virtual event explores the intersection of ageism and capitalism and activists’ efforts to address discrimination based on age.

The Big Scary “S” Word and Economic Democracy

Yael Bridge | Ricardo Nuñez | Cea Weaver | Jabari Brisport

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, NYC-DSA’s Housing Working Group, Housing Justice for All, In These Times, Dollars & Sense, Sustainable Economies Law Center

The third installment in a series of virtual events inspired by the film The Big Scary “S” Word focused on worker cooperatives and the fight for economic justice.

From the Embers of the Old: Why DSA Surged and How It Can Grow

Maria Svart | Beth Huang | Bhaskar Sunkara | Bill Fletcher Jr | David Duhalde

Each of the panelists played a unique role in building DSA in the 2010s, just before the explosive growth of DSA’s membership, and will speak from experience in student, labor, racial justice, feminist, and socialist organizing, with DSA as a nexus. The conversation was moderated by Bhaskar Sunkara, editor & publisher of Jacobin magazine and a former YDSA Activist editor in the late 2000s.


The Big Scary “S” Word: Climate Change

Yael Bridge | Marquita Bradshaw | Rep. Ruth Buffalo | Rep. Jeanne Kapela | Javier Miranda | Thea Riofrancos | Ashik Siddique

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, DSA’s Ecosocialist Working Group and Green New Deal Campaign Committee, Sunrise Movement, Verso, Haymarket, Lux magazine, In These Times

The second installment in a series of virtual events inspired by the film The Big Scary “S” Word focused on climate change and the fight for a Green New Deal.

The Big Scary “S” Word: Socialists Fighting for Universal Healthcare during COVID and Beyond

Yael Bridge | Susan Rogers | Michael Lighty | Dennis Kosuth | Elizabeth LaLasz | Rebecca Wood

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, DSA’s Medicare for All Committee, Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP), DSA’s Healthcare Workers Collective, In These Times

The first installment in a series of virtual events inspired by The Big Scary “S” Word focused on the fight for universal healthcare during COVID and beyond.

Rediscovering Earth, Reclaiming our Lives: A Conversation with Kim Stanley Robinson

Kim Stanley Robinson | Anders Dunker

Co-Sponsor: Democratic Left

Prominent science-fiction author Kim Stanley Robinson speaks with philosopher Anders Dunker about what it will take to re-imagine and achieve a new relationship to the Earth and to each other.


Ballad of an American: What Does Paul Robeson’s Life Teach Us?

Lawrence Ware | Charles Howard

Co-Sponsors: Religion and Socialism Working Group of DSA, International Committee of DSA

Panelists discuss the modern relevance of Paul Robeson, a concert singer, film actor, and public personality stuck down by McCarthyism.


What Should Reparations Look Like? A Discussion of Sixteen Thousand Dollars

Symone Baptiste | Brodie Reed | Ellington Wells | Bianca Cunningham

Co-Sponsors: DSA Afrosocialists, Socialists of Color Caucus

A discussion of Sixteen Thousand Dollars, a narrative comedy short film that imagines a world in which a struggling black college grad wakes up to find that reparations have finally been paid to descendants of slaves in America. This discussion on reparations and Q&A followed a screening of the film in conjunction with the DSA Afrosocialists & Socialists of Color Caucus and the DSA Fund.


The Fight for Racial and Economic Justice

Darrick Hamilton | Bianca Cunningham | Olúfẹ́mi Táíwò | Symone Baptiste | Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, The New Press, DSA’s Afrosocialists and Socialists of Color Caucus, Haymarket Books, and DSA’s Democratic Socialist Labor Commission

A discussion surrounding Darrick Hamilton’s chapter on “A Three-Legged Stool for Racial and Economic Justice.” Panelists explore questions such as What is the democratic socialist case for reparations? and How do we fight for it and other economic components of racial justice?

Universal Healthcare and Racial Justice

Dorothy Roberts | Amirah Sequeira | Tre Kwon | Natasha Lewis 

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, The New Press, Physicians for a National Health Program (PNHP), Left Voice, University of Pennsylvania Press

A discussion centered on Dorothy Robert’s chapter on universal healthcare in which panelists explore questions such as What is the case for universal healthcare? and How do we fight for it and ensure that racial justice is part of that fight?

Family, Reproductive Justice, and Socialism

Sarah Leonard | LaKia Williams | Jenny Brown | Sunshine Royanian Ludder 

Co-Sponsors: The New Press, Dissent magazine, Lux Magazine, NYC for Abortion Rights 

A conversation focused on Sarah Leonard’s chapter titled “The Family of the Future.” Panelists explore the historical practices and policies around “family” in the U.S. as well as socialist reproductive justice as it pertains to childcare, housing, abortion access, and policing.

Voter Supression and Electoral Reform

J Mijin Cha | Miles Rapoport | Renitta Shannon 

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, The New Press

A discussion focused on J. Mijin Cha’s chapter titled “We the People: Voting Rights, Campaign Finance, and Election Reform.” Panelists discuss the need for democratic socialists to work for actual democracy by fighting against voter suppression and for electoral reform.

Building the People’s Banks

David Dayen | Flynn Murray | Melissa Rakestraw | CJ Jenkins

Co-Sponsors: The New Press, Dissent magazine, DSA’s Democratic Socialist Labor Commission

A conversation surrounding David Dayen’s chapter in the book titled “Building the People’s Banks” and the need for democratic socialists to fight to democratize the financial system through campaigns for public financial institutions, especially postal banking.

The Future of Workers

Bianca Cunningham | Sarita Gupta | Stephen Lerner | Joseph McCartin

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, The New Press

A discussion focused on Sarita Gupta, Stephen Lerner, and Joseph McCartin’s chapter in the book titled “Democracy, Equality, and the Future of Workers,” exploring the need to confront issues of democracy and persistent inequalities through organizing a powerful rank and file labor movement.

The Fight for Public Education

Pedro Noguera | Nicole McCormick | Michael Bennett

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, The New Press

An exploration of Pedro Noguera’s chapter titled “Defending and Improving Public Education.”

We Own the Future: Democratic Socialism—American Style

Kate Aronoff | Sarah Leonard | Bill Fletcher Jr

Co-Sponsors: Dissent magazine, The New Press

Kate Aronoff, a co-editor of We Own the Future, discusses the book with contributors Sarah Leonard and Bill Fletcher Jr.