NPC Statement On Orlando Mass Shooting

DSA Condemns Mass Murder in Orlando and the Intolerant Ideologies That Promote Such Acts

Issued by the National Political Committee of DSA, June 13, 2016

Democratic Socialists of America condemns the perpetrator of the mass killing and wounding of innocents at the LGBTQ night club Pulse in Orlando Florida this past weekend on Latin night. We stand in solidarity with the victims and their families and the LGBTQ and Latinx community of Orlando and beyond.

This was not a random shooting, but one motivated by the homophobia and hypermasculinity that characterizes all fanatical ideologies, be they Islamist or Christian extremism or far-right anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim political movements. Rather than attacking the actual sources of injustice, violent extremists target those who do not conform to conservative and patriarchal conceptions of social life.

 

DSA condemns all authoritarian movements and extremist religions that favor imposing their ideologies through the armed violence of the state or of vigilantes. We find it particularly hypocritical of the religious right to condemn this attack as one upon “American values,” when the far right espouses a worldview that demonizes the LGBTQ community, immigrants and people of color. DSA stands for the building of a democratic civil society that affirms the humanity of all; the Right’s current hate campaign in favor of transphobic bathroom bills stands in stark opposition to that commitment.

In the United States, extremist individuals can act out their violent hatred through ready access to military-style weapons whose only purpose is to inflict massive, instantaneous casualties. The majority of the U.S. public favors banning assault rifles and stricter regulation of access to fire arms. Until we defeat the power of the undemocratic NRA, the United States will continue to lead the world in random mass killings – a much greater threat to our collective well-being than is organized terrorism.

Ideologically motivated mass shootings in the U.S. in recent decades have been carried out by individuals acting in isolation. When the actor is an individual white racist, as in the Charleston, South Carolina shootings, we do not condemn all whites in the U.S as adherents of the shooter’s racist ideology. The same refusal to hold an entire community to blame for the act of an individual fanatic must also apply to the Muslim community in the United States. These acts of fanatical harm of innocents can only be curtailed through a continuous struggle for a society that embraces freedom of sexual expression and the right to freely choose whom one loves, as well as full rights for all immigrants, regardless of their nominal legal status.

 

Introduction to Socialist Feminism Call

July 20, 2017
· 73 rsvps

Join Philadelphia DSA veteran activist Michele Rossi to explore “socialist feminism.” How does it differ from other forms of feminism? How and when did it develop? What does it mean for our activism? One hour. 8pm ET, 7pm CT, 6pm MT, 5pm PT.

DSA Queer Socialists Conference Call

July 27, 2017
· 38 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.

 

Film Discussion: Pride

September 10, 2017
· 19 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
· 19 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.