This Week in the CDSA (October 14 – October 21)

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Good Morning Chicago DSA,

Folks, it’s been just a week since my last email to you all and, thanks to all of you, there’ve been some real good changes to our organization. If you missed it, last week we endorsed three candidates for alderman – Byron Sigcho Lopez in the 25th Ward, Rossana Roriguez in the 33rd Ward, and Carlos Ramirez-Rosa in the 35th Ward. And not only that, we also voted for Lift The Ban to become our first chapter priority campaign. All of that? It’s pretty cool, in my humble opinion. It feels like CDSA is firmer and more focused as an organization, more powerful but not quite there yet. If CDSA were a movie about a scrappy basketball team from a small division trying to win the championshiph despite overwhelming odds, I feel like we’re in the training montage scene right now, shootin 3s in the gym after hours and running sprints. We’re gonna start getting some wins soon and we know how we’re going to get wins, we just need to put the work in first.

We’ve got a lot of events on the calendar this week. Lots of good opportunities to get outside and canvass or to join a working group meeting or even drink a couple beers and raise money for Medicare for All. I’ll see you out there, comrades 🙂

Sunday, October 14
  • Lift the Ban – Rogers Park Canvass; 12 PM – 4 PM; Heartland Cafe; 7000 N. Glenwood Ave. 
    Join our Lift the Ban canvassing weekend in Rogers Park! We’ll be knocking on doors to talk to our neighbors about supporting the referendum to lift the state-wide ban on rent control, on the ballot in the 49th ward this November. We’ll also be talking about how rent control fits into a broader fight for housing for all.
    We will meet the Heartland Cafe at 12pm on Sunday and hold a short canvassing training before we hit the doors. If you’ve got ’em, wear your DSA shirts and buttons. Inexperienced and experienced canvassers welcome!
  • West Cook Branch Monthly Meeting; 1 PM – 3 PM; Oak Park Library – Maze Branch; 845 Gunderson Ave
    October monthly branch meeting, including branch business and follow up/planning branch activities.
    We’ll be meeting at Oak Park Library Maze Branch
  • Health Care Working Group Fundraiser; 2 PM – 6 PM; Metropolitan Brewing; 3057 N. Rockwell St.
    A nice get together for comrades in one of the most overlooked tap rooms in the city. One dollar for every drink between the hours of 2 to 6 will go to funding the health care working group, and that includes all patrons and non DSA members. We will have a couple of tables reserved for schmoozing (although there is a lot of open space and an outdoor area adjacent to the Chicago river) and possibly another table for us to spread awareness about the Chicago DSA and the National M4A Campaign to those who may be curious.
Tuesday, October 16
  • Lift the Ban – Logan Square Canvass; 6 PM – 8:30 PM; 3851 W. Fullerton Ave.
    Join CDSA Housing Working Group as we knock on doors to identify support for rent control among 35th ward residents, and petition signatures for Carlos Ramirez’s election.
    If you’ve got ’em, wear your DSA shirts and buttons. Inexperienced and experienced canvassers welcome!
  • Health Care Working Group Meeting; 7 PM – 8:30 PM; CDSA Office; 3411 W. Diversey Ave.
    Come check out Chicago DSA’s efforts to fight for health justice and make Medicare for All a reality! We will be discussing our ongoing canvassing efforts, community health efforts, coalition building, and more! All are welcome, non-DSA folks included.
Wednesday, October 17
  • Solidarity Economy Working Group at CCEC Convening; 6 PM – 8:30 PM; 237 S. Desplaines 
    Solidarity. Equity In All Dimensions. Participatory Democracy. Sustainability. Pluralism. These are the five principles used by the US Solidarity Economy Network to define the solidarity economy. At this month’s meeting, we will join the inaugural convening of the Chicagoland Cooperative Ecosystem Coalition (CCEC). This gathering was announced during the Cooperative Economy Summit and its organizers hope to begin developing an intentional space to build, strengthen, and connect Chicagoland’s worker cooperative ecosystem. Bring your questions, interest, and skills to this intersection of solidarity economy organizing. Please register your attendance with the Coordinating Committee so that they know how many people to anticipate.
  • Taking Back the Judiciary and Stopping Judge Coghlan; 7 PM – 8:30 PM; UE Hall; 37 S. Ashland Ave.
    Cook County judges have incredible power over criminal sentencing, housing cases, child custody disputes, and so much more. Yet despite rampant racism among the Cook County judiciary, in the past 40 years just *one* judge has lost a retention election. CDSA has recently endorsed the Coalition to Dump Matthew Coghlan, one of the county’s worst disparate sentencers and dirty cop protectors, who is up for a retention vote this year. This event will provide background information on the role of judges, judicial elections, and why Cook County voters need to #DumpCoghlan on November 6th.
Thursday, October 18
  • Rally to Put Socialists in City Hall; 7 PM – 10 PM; UE Hall 37 S. Ashland Ave. 
    *This event is not endorsed by CDSA but all 3 CDSA endorsed candidates will be speaking at this event*
    Socialist Alternative’s Kshama Sawant will be in Chicago to discuss the lessons of over 4 years of struggle as a fighting socialist on Seattle’s city council. Speakers at the event will include: Byron-Sigcho Lopez-DSA member and aldermanic candidate in
    25th ward; Rossana Rodriguez-DSA member and aldermanic candidate in
    the 33rd ward; Kshama Sawant- Socialist Alternative Seattle Councilmember
    since 2014; Carlos Daniel Ramirez-Rosa – Alderman of Chicago’s 35th Ward since 2015. The speakers will be followed with live music and drinks!
Saturday, October 20
  • Midwest Election Reform Summit; 9 AM – 3 PM; University Center; 525 S. State St.
    A summit consisting of talks and panel discussions between activists, politicians, journalists, and legal experts from Chicago and the broader Midwest with the aim of building a coalition of grassroots groups to achieve ranked choice voting and other important electoral reforms in Illinois. Open to the public, RSVP on the Facebook page if you want a free lunch.
  • CDSA Working Session; 12 PM – 8 PM; Pumping Station One; 3519 N. Elston
    Come to the CDSA working session to see what the tech group is up to! This event will provide a nice hackerspace where you can work on anything from your growing backlog to new and exciting CDSA projects. Please bring your own laptop.
  • In Conversation: Barry Eidlin and Micah Uetricht; 7 PM – 8:30 PM; Volumes Bookcafe; 1474 N. Milwaukee Ave.
    The CDSA Labor Working Group is excited to host a conversation with sociologist Barry Eidlin, and Managing Editor of Jacobin Magazine, Micah Uetricht. They will be discussing Barry’s new book, Labor and the Class Idea in the United States and Canada, which explores why unions are weaker in the U.S. than in Canada, despite the two countries’ socio-economic similarities.
    Barry Eidlin is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at McGill University, a longtime member of Solidarity, and a new member of DSA. Micah Uetricht is the managing editor of Jacobin. He is the author of Strike for America: Chicago Teachers Against Austerity.
  • The Health Care Working Group is out in force canvassing for Medicare for All! If anyone is interested in joining their fight for universal healthcare they canvas every Saturday from noon to 3pm at both the Division Blue line stop and the 18th street Pink line stop (except this Saturday, 9/18 when they will be having a data entry party from the signatures they’ve collected). The goal of this canvassing is to get folks to sign a petition in support of H.R.676 and S.1804 which they use to lobby local House Reps to support Medicare for All. If you’re interested, please fill out this form to the best of your current knowledge. You can always come back and fill the form out again with updated dates that do/don’t work for you so long as you use the same email. Thanks!

  • Please consider donating to CDSA! I know we’re socialists and most of us don’t have much in our bank accounts but we appreciate donations of any amount. Your one-time or monthly recurring donation will help CDSA continue building democratic socialism in Chicago!
  • Grievance Policy
    If you ever feel you are being harassed by another member of DSA, or made to feel uncomfortable by a member, or have a conflict with another member, please reach out to to get in touch with our chapter’s Harassment and Grievance Officers. Additionally, there is a National Grievance Officer you can reach out to as well. Her name is Paula Brantner, and her email is If you’re interested in learning more about DSA’s grievance policy, and good resource is Resolution 33 that was pass at the National DSA Convention in 2017
If I missed an event, please let me know ASAP at
If you have a CDSA organized or sponsored event that you would like added to the event calendar, please fill out this form. If you want this event included in this email make sure to submit your form before the preceding Friday, at the latest.
For a more complete list of events and DSA-adjacent events check out the events page on the Chicago DSA website. 
In solidarity,
Zach Shearer