Vital Change Opportunity: Life at a Remarkable DSA Crossroads

The DSA needs a plan which needs to address the decision of whether they support democrats or reject the establishment.

A DSA crossroads is looming and that’s a good thing. In fact, a very good thing. Gladly, the DSA has grown a measure of substance and has options to go forward. Hopefully, there is appetite and energy for more.

In simplest terms, the crossroads represents a decision for democratic socialists. Does the DSA organization align with the Democratic party? Or does it take a more aggressive tact that is more radically away from establishment conventions?

As the crossroads image suggests, the decision is, in the end, an either-or proposition. The absence of a clear committed strategy and direction will retard results. Yes, it is a huge transformation and even little bits of relief are welcome. But there needs to be clear standards and expectations of supported elected officials, and a crisp endorsed vision. (There’s this old adage that says ‘if you don’t know where you are going, any map will get you there’).

Likewise, there must be a solid understanding of the strength and shape of the DSA commitment to reach its goals. This implies a reality-based assessment of the organization’s understanding of the commitment, and an associated ability to educate and improve upon it. This ties with the important ability to measure and recognize success. (So, the other adage is ‘if you don’t know where you are, no map is going to help’).

(This map flim-flam is just to advocate for a plan with associated operations to make it work. To get the results. For the DSA to grow in stature and means. All ASAP.)

DSA Crossroads, Detroit Style

I’m enamored with the hope manifested in the tenants of the DSA, especially because it is pursued with a proclivity for action that pulls in youth. That’s part of why I joined up in Detroit earlier this year.

I cannot say I fully understand or am much involved with the Detroit group, though they are welcoming and caring. Of course, Detroit and the DSA at large might well consider me as ‘not getting it’ or far behind.

When the local DSA chapter recently sent out suggested reading and set a follow-up for newcomers to discuss, I appreciated it. One of the readings, Fight the Constitution! Demand a New Republic! hit home. The ideas in the piece are in some fashion similar to my own and also more extended and thought provoking. I have no idea if the concepts have been advanced or committed since it was written a couple of critical years back. But I do know the devil is in the proverbial details, and that anyone like me has no viable chance to proceed alone.

I made my way to the Diwan Cafe in Dearborn, on Shaefer just north of Michigan Avenue, for the educational review meeting. Though I could find no meeting, it was educational, a good reminder for me. I was in the midst of what might be the largest concentration of Middle Easterners outside the Middle East. There was only peace there, which is quite a contrast with the news about the actual Mid East.

Threats and an Opportunity

Maybe the most prominent threat associated with the DSA’s pending crossroads decision is that the option will not be there long. A lack of socialist progress or an increase in capitalist-powered resistance can readily sweep it away. Yes, there has been a ‘Bernie bump’ for socialism, but its long-term stability is unknown.

Comfortable capitalists consistently characterize socialists as godless communists. This is one layer of the coat of armor that stymies humanitarian efforts and enables gross capitalist exploits. If there were (or is) a cohesive plan to implement socialism or at least progressive socialistic mechanisms, successful change management says these accusations need to be mitigated, if not flipped for advantage.

Opportunity (at least an idea) at the DSA Crossroads

The USA has always been in significant regard a Christian country. This will not change, even as the Christian faith is decimated by fascist capitalistic influences. Most Christians pose no threat to the socialist agenda.

Maybe the DSA has a governing philosophy. Could not the philosophy call out an openness or outright support for religious acceptance, including Christianity? While respecting the steadfast need for church-state separation, I think Christianity is a power for thinking caring people. Not that Christianity is there to be used, rather, that in its proper form it is a force of good. There is an awareness and a growing hunger among Christians to come out from under blatant abuse and misrepresentation promulgated by capitalist authoritarianism.

A couple of years back, Sojourners put out a good article “Why Democratic Socialism Is Not Anti-Christian”, a piece that helped me make the decision to join the DSA. My contention is that the situation is ripe to take this further, to enlist Christians to the socialist cause. This is substantiated by psychologic analysis set forth in this APA research, indicating that strict adherence to purity over care (think racism and bias as manifested and manipulated via capitalism) leads to discrimination, which is anti-Christian.

DSA Crossroads for Change with Walt Disney quote: Change is Inevitable, Growth is Optional