The DSA-LA Anti-Oppression Committee is primarily an internal resource committee working to make our chapter and all work carried forth by DSA-LA just, representative, and liberatory.
At our heart, we are a socialist organization. To that end, the Anti-Oppression Committee should serve as a place to generate and disseminate a class politics informed by anti-racist, queer, and feminist analyses. We recognize that capitalism exploits and alienates all workers from their labor. We further recognize the historical role capitalism has played in dividing the working class through the maintenance of racial, gender, and sexual categories of difference. It is our job as a committee to address the myriad ways workers are pitted against one another through ideologies of racism, sexism, transphobia, heterosexism, and xenophobia by the bourgeoisie.
Our political and historical moment demands that we recognize the role capitalism continues to play in dividing the working class. Doing so is not intended to occlude serious debate about the origins of the ideologies of racism, sexism, or heterosexism. Neither is it intended to argue that the end of capitalism will usher in a utopian, egalitarian society. Recognizing that capitalism weaponizes categories of difference is instead meant to inform the actions we undertake as a committee to unite the working class. Historically, the ruling class has divided the working class by fomenting racial hatred. Today, however, championing “diversity” is curiously comfortable in corporate boardrooms and around the brunch tables of white-collar professionals alike. While admirable, efforts to include a small number of diverse identities in the upper echelons of power paper over the stark reality that structural racism, sexism, and heterosexism grease the wheels of capitalism.
The Anti-Oppression Committee believes we should build bonds of solidarity through collective struggle. Through this collective struggle, we can begin to create a world which prioritizes the needs of the many and, in so doing, actively challenge the ideologies of bigotry which stand to divide us.
Our mission is to ensure all organizers and participants in DSA-LA campaigns, events, committees, working groups, and communications are safe, visible, and heard. Capitalism, white supremacy, and patriarchy privilege the lives of a few. Our work must strive to achieve the equity of others including: women, people of color, indigenous people, LGBTQIA people, disabled people, seniors, and the working class. As a committee, we aim to:
Liaise between all formal DSA-LA committees and working groups to ensure these perspectives are being heard, prioritized, and integrated into work being done across the chapter
Curate, develop and facilitate workshops for all members around the specifics of capitalist, white supremacist and patriarchal oppressions and how we dismantle them both internally and externally (including informational workshops, facilitator trainings, and organizer trainings to name a few)
Formalize a program of mentorship (1-1, facilitator trainings, community-building events) for new and existing members to combat structural marginalization, thereby incorporating and encouraging leadership from oppressed groups that may not have major leadership or committee representation in DSA-LA
Support and coordinate actions and campaigns put forth by these groups and individuals
Practice sustainable and horizontal models of leadership by rotating responsibilities at meetings
Provide a safe space for dialogue and decompression, alleviate emotional labor often experienced by intersectional organizers
Cultivate relationships and solidarity with representative groups and organizations outside of DSA-LA