January Reading Group

dsa-reading group prop

This month, after much anticipation, we will be discussing State and Revolution by the absolute lad V. I. Lenin on Wednesday, January 28th at 7pm at S&S Artisan Pub and Coffeehouse. (Please note the place change!)

State and Rev is one of Lenin’s most enduring and important works on the role and nature of the bourgeois state on both sides of the proletarian revolution. Courtesy of the Steering Committee, there will be a few free paperback copies available at the next general meeting. You can also find it online for free at the Marxist Archive. Any edition is fine however—the text and its ideas continue to be relevant regardless of the publication date.

Come with your observations, questions, and connections! All are welcome.

So to repeat: the next Reading Group meeting will be January 28th @ 7pm and we’ll be talking State and Revolution. I, for one, can’t wait.

January 2019 General Meeting Agenda

The January 2019 General Meeting will be on Monday, January 7th at 7PM in the Lawrence Public Library (Meeting Room C).

The Agenda for the meeting is as follows. Time estimates in parentheses.

  • (5:00) Introductions and Ice-Breaker
  • (2:00) Open floor for adding items to the agenda
  • (2:00) Vote on agenda
  • (5:00) Overview of Robert’s Rules / Community Agreement
  • (13:00) Reportbacks / Intro to Working Groups (1 minute each)
      • Housing
      • Electoral
      • Healthcare
      • Socialist Feminism (Additional 3 minutes)
      • Socialist Education
      • Reading Group
      • Newsletter
      • Labor
      • KU
      • Homelessness / Mutual Aid
  • (15:00) Overview of Bylaw Changes
      • Why are the Bylaws changing?
      • What changes are being made to the LKDSA Bylaws?
      • Suggested future changes
      • Chapter Vote on bylaw changes from Review Committee
  • (12:00) Vote on ratifying Working Groups (3 minutes each)
      • Transport Working Group
      • Socialist Feminist Working Group
      • Newsletter Working Group
      • Healthcare Working Group
  • (10:00) Open Floor
  • (5:00) Plan for next General Meeting
  • (5:00) Close Out


Bylaw Amendment Committee #1

Bylaw Amendment Committee #1 was ratified by a majority vote in the November General Meeting. The committee put forward the following proposed amendments. Each amendment will be brought to a quorum vote at the December General Meeting on December 3rd.

If passed, these amendments will be added to the existing bylaws, available here.

If you are interested in these bylaw amendments or interested in working on the committee please contact the committee via email at bac1@lawrencedsa.com.


Amendment 1: Proxy Voting

All votes to be held by quorum must allow members to vote by phone call, text message, instant message, or signed pre-written statement presented to a Steering Committee member.


Amendment 2: Law Enforcement, addendum to Article III

Law enforcement officers are not permitted to be chapter members, hold committee positions, be members of working groups, vote on any issue in the chapter.  Members or attendees who fail to disclose membership in, or relationship with, law enforcement organizations to the chapter and all members of the steering committee in a clear and open manner are subject to immediate removal from the chapter by simple majority vote of the chapter membership in a general meeting or emergency meeting with the required quorum outlined in Article VII Section 4.


Amendment 3: Security and Infiltration, addendum to Article III

Individuals affiliated with groups that are anti-socialist, reactionary, anti-labor, or otherwise hostile to the chapter or its members, deemed so by 2/3 of a quorum of the chapter membership, are not permitted to be members and are subject to individual removal from the chapter by simple majority vote of the chapter membership in a general meeting or emergency meeting with the required quorum outlined in Article VII Section 4.


Addendum to Amendments 2 & 3:

In order for findings (such as those outlined in Amendments 2 & 3) to be made, another DSA member must present written charges against the member in question to the Steering Committee. The Steering Committee will set the date of a chapter meeting for deliberations on the issue. The member in question must receive a copy of the written charges and notice of the meeting a minimum of two weeks before that meeting takes place. An expelled member may appeal to the National Political Committee of DSA.


Amendment 4: Political party work, addendum to Article X

Material support, implicit endorsements, and work for political candidates or parties are subject to the same democratic process as explicit endorsements

Surveillance Cameras

Statement on the City Proposal for Surveillance Cameras Downtown

Tonight, City Council will hear a proposal to create and install a police surveillance camera network in downtown Lawrence. You can read the full proposal here.

The proposed surveillance system is another example of how the profit motive is driving our criminal justice policy.

This policy would not serve the interests of the people of Lawrence, but would put $108,000 into the pockets of a private company who’s selling us the cameras.

We saw this same process last year, when private jail-construction companies wanted our city and state to build a jail we don’t want and don’t need. Private companies will always want to expand the incarceration system to line their pockets & this vicious cycle has propelled a brutal and racist system of mass-incarceration. We have seen this before: cops will purchase more tools to catch more people for minor offenses, and then they use the rise in minor convictions to justify buying more tools and building more prisons.

We said no to the jail expansion, and we say no to this expansion of the mass-incarceration apparatus.  As Socialists and residents of Lawrence, we reject this proposal and urge everyone to do the same.

August Reading Group

Hi hi hi everyone! Happy last week of August!

Tonight at 7:30pm in Room B of the LPL is Reading Group! There is no assigned reading tonight. Instead, we’re doing our 2nd ever Lefty Show and Tell! Have you read, watched, or heard something that speaks to your socialist heart and want to talk about it? Perfect! Read, watched, or heard something that is so ridiculous you need to vent about it? Also perfect! Have a question or observation you want to talk about in a room full of your socialist comrades? Can’t express how perfect that is too.

See you there tonight!

dsa-reading group prop

July Reading Group

dsa-reading group prop

Get ready for our next installment of the LKS DSA Reading Group! It’s coming up in 2 weeks, on July 30th at 7pm in the Lawrence Public Library, room C.

This time we’ll be talking about the excellent, award-winning essay “Community, Democracy, and Mutual Aid: Toward Dual Power and Beyond” by the Symbiosis Research Collective. (That link goes directly to the pdf.)

You want a hook? Here’s a doozy of one:

The next system is more likely to succeed and endure if we steadily transform
existing institutions, modes of production, and ways of relating to one another
rather than try to conjure up a whole new system out of thin air. The heart
of our argument is that building networks of radically democratic, cooperative
institutions can sustain our communities and our collective struggle in
the near term, organize our base to win fights with the state and private sector,
begin eroding public support for the current dysfunctional system, and, in
time, become the dominant institutions of tomorrow’s world. Our proposal
integrates process and objective, with democracy and community as both the
means and the ends of social transformation. Filling in the gaps between “scientific”
socialist analysis and utopian imagination, we have attempted something
the Left has always struggled to create: a realistic transition model to a
post-capitalist world.

Bring a friend! Eat some snacks! See you there!

July General Meeting

Whoa June came and went real quick.

It’s that time again friends, the first Monday of the month (July this time) is right around the corner, so you know what that means–it’s General Meeting time! 7/2 @ 7pm, LPL.

Fresh off the electrifying election of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in NY14 (so pumped about that) we’re coming into the back half of the year all revved up. We’ve got a few things on the docket and word on the street is there’s gonna be food. Come get it!

We even made a facebook event post for the General Meeting that is in fact the very first event posted on our brand new facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/lawrenceksdsa/. Don’t forget to hit like and subscribe.



Join us for a nice picnic evening, Monday June 11th at 7pm in South Park near the gazebo. Bring food and drinks to share!

It’s summer time and everybody could use a little chill time with their DSA homies, so come join us, get some socializing in, get some food in ya, get some good times.

June Reading Group

dsa-reading group propFollowing up on the great training at this month’s General Meeting (thanks KP for leading it, Rose for walking us through organizing conversations, and Hannah for developing it!), this month we’re going to read up on the science of organizing!

So, we’ve got 2 articles published by the Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung and written by Steve Williams. Both are about the transformative organizing model, the first about how to do it right and the second is the lessons learned from it. The links to the pdfs are below.

This month’s Reading Group will be on Monday, June 25 at 7pm in Room C of the Lawrence Public Library.

Transformative Organizing

Demand Everything