Statement in Support of the Hong Kong Democracy Movement

The Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) supports the goals of the Hong Kong movement for democracy (the “Umbrella Movement”).

When the British handed Hong Kong over to China in 1997, the Chinese government promised both in the Sino-British Joint Declaration and the mini constitution of Hong Kong (the Basic Law) that a democratic system eventually would be implemented in Hong Kong.

However the current resolution passed by the Chinese National People’s Congress for implementing that promise by 2017 would sharply restrict candidates for political office to those preselected by an unrepresentative body representing mainly business interests.

The struggle to create a political system with more democratic self-determination is an essential step towards rectifying the growing economic inequality in Hong Kong.

As democrats and as socialists we support our sisters and brothers in Hong Kong who are fighting for the same goals we have in the USA.

High school students organized in Scholarism and university students organized in the Hong Kong Federation of Students have taken the lead in organizing massive peaceful occupations and assemblies to pursue these legitimate political ends.  They have been widely supported by the independent unions of the Hong Kong Confederation of Labor and by numerous civic and neighborhood associations, and by Occupy Central.

After many days of protests marked by an excessive police response, the Hong Kong government agreed to have a representative meet with the students.  However this promise for negotiations was obviated by a wave of violent attacks on peaceful protesters by thugs, often with police looking the other way or sometimes abetting the efforts of the vigilantes. The fighters for democracy have courageously resisted with nonviolent tactics.

We support the demands that repressive violence against the protesters cease, whether it comes from official government sources or from thugs acting in concert with the government.  The Hong Kong government should immediately negotiate with students and other representatives of the democracy movement to resolve the underlying issues, including the establishment of genuine universal suffrage and initial measures to restrict the growth of extreme economic and social inequality.

We applaud the initiative and courage of those participating in the Hong Kong Movement for Democracy.  We will support the struggle by making use of our own democratic rights in appropriate ways to publicize, petition and protest in solidarity with this crucial democratic movement.

Passed by the DSA National Political Committee October 5, 2014.

Click here for a list of actions you can take in solidarity with the Umbrella Movement.

DSA Queer Socialists Conference Call

May 25, 2017
· 33 rsvps

Join DSA's Queer Socialists Working Group to discuss possible activities for the group and its proposed structure. 9 pm ET/8 pm CT/7 pm MT/6 pm PT.

 

What Is DSA? Training Call

May 30, 2017
· 40 rsvps

If you're a new DSAer, have been on a new member call, but still have questions about DSA's core values/strategy/core work and how to express these ideas in an accessible way to the media, as well as to friends, family and others who might be interested in joining DSA, this call is for you. 

We will talk through the basics of DSA's political orientation and strategy for moving toward democratic socialism, and also have call participants practice discussing these issues with each other. By the end of the call you should feel much more comfortable thinking about and expressing what DSA does and what makes our organization/strategy unique. 8 pm ET; 7 pm CT; 6 pm MT; 5 pm PT. 70 minutes.

Film Discussion: Rosa [Luxemburg]

May 31, 2017
· 92 rsvps

Join DSA member Jason Schulman to discuss the film Rosa, directed by feminist filmmaker Margarethe von Trotta. View it here at no cost before the discussion. Marxist theorist and economist Rosa Luxemburg (1871-1919) played a key role in German socialist politics. Jason edited Rosa Luxemburg: Her Life and Legacy and has a chapter in Rosa Remix. 9 ET/8 CT/7 MT/6 PT.

Film Discussion: The Free State of Jones

June 11, 2017
· 26 rsvps

Join Victoria Bynum, Distinguished Professor Emeritus of History, Texas State University, San Marcos, to discuss The Free State of Jones. STX Entertainment bought the film rights to Bynum's book of the same title. She also served as a consultant and appears in a cameo scene. What was the Free State of Jones? During the Civil War, an armed band of deserters led by Newt Knight, a non-slaveholding white farmer, took to the swamps of southeastern Mississippi and battled against the Confederacy in an uprising popularly known as “The Free State of Jones.” Joining Newt in this rebellion was Rachel, a slave. From their relationship, there developed a controversial mixed-race community that endured long after the Civil War had ended. View the film here for $6 before the discussion. 8 ET/7 CT/6 MT/5 PT.

Introduction to Democratic Socialism

June 13, 2017
· 5 rsvps

Join Bill Barclay, Chicago DSA co-chair, and Peg Strobel, National Political Committee and Feminist Working Group co-chair, on this webinar for an overview of what we in Democratic Socialists of America mean when we talk about "socialism," "capitalism" and the goals of the socialist movement. 9:30 PM ET; 8:30 PM CT; 7:30 PM MT; 6:30 PM PT.

  1. This webinar is free for any DSA member in good standing.
  2. You need a computer with good internet access.
  3. Your computer must have headphones (preferred) or speakers; you can speak thru a mic or use chat to "speak".
  4. If you have questions, contact Bill Barclay, chocolatehouse@sbcglobal.net.
  5. If you have technical questions, contact Tony Schmitt, schmittaj@gmail.com, 608-355-6568.

Film Discussion: Pride

September 10, 2017
· 7 rsvps

Join DSA members Eric Brasure and Brendan Hamill to discuss the British film Pride (2014). It’s 1984, British coal miners are on strike, and a group of gays and lesbians in London bring the queer community together to support the miners in their fight. Based on the true story of Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners. The film is available for rent on YouTube, Amazon, and iTunes. 8 ET/7 CT/6 MT/5 PT.

Film Discussion: Union Maids

September 24, 2017
· 5 rsvps

 

Join DSA member and labor historian Susan Hirsch in discussing Union Maids (1976). Nominated for an Academy Award, this documentary follows three Chicago labor organizers (Kate Hyndman, Stella Nowicki, and Sylvia Woods) active beginning in the 1930s. The filmmakers were members of the New American Movement (a precursor of DSA), and the late Vicki Starr (aka Stella Nowicki) was a longtime member of Chicago DSA and the Chicago Women's Liberation Union. It’s available free on YouTube, though sound quality is poor. 8ET/7CT/6MT/5PT.