Points of Unity

Agreement with our Points of Unity is a requirement of membership. These Points can be amended by 4/5 vote.

Refoundation begins the project of transforming DSA from a pressure group to a mass working-class, socialist party—borne of movements for justice, community mobilization, and rank-and-file labor power. As DSA members, we yearn for a future where all power is held by the working class with common ownership of the means of production throughout the world. Here are our points of unity:

  1. We are Marxists and revolutionary socialists. We believe that capitalism is an unjust, violent, irrational, and exploitative system which must be overturned and replaced by socialism. Though we support any reform that makes our lives more bearable and fulfilling, we believe that socialism can only be won by confronting and overthrowing capitalists. We want complete economic, social, and political power in the hands of the working class.
  2. We believe in the centrality of working-class struggle. Struggle and class consciousness conditions us for political and economic power. No other class in society, with its unique position literally at the point of production, has the power and ability to strike, stopping services and production and restarting these services under its own initiative. Additionally, we understand that organized working-class struggle is inextricably linked to all efforts toward struggles for liberation.
  3. We believe the immediate goal of the Democratic Socialists of America should be founding a mass working-class, socialist party. We understand that building a mass working-class party will not happen overnight, and will require much more than running open socialists or communists for office. Our vision of a mass working-class party has a foundation in movement-building, base-building, labor power, tenant organizations, and local struggles that are linked nationally.
  4. We believe the Democratic and Republican parties will never look out for the interests of working people; they only represent the interests of the capitalist ruling class. Though there may be short-term gain in running socialists on Democratic ballot lines, we believe that any attempts to reform the Democratic Party is ultimately harmful to our aims of building a mass working class party.
  5. We reject sectarianism and believe that a unified and fighting left is more necessary than ever. Today’s left is only just beginning to recognize the practical importance of unity. We aim to build on this unity and push it forward through promoting left-wing collaboration wherever possible. While we don’t believe that immediate “shotgun marriages” between socialist groups should be done tomorrow, in the long term we will pursue mutual collaboration leading to eventual merging.
  6. We fight for liberation and against all oppression, including racism, sexism, ableism, discrimination against queer and transgender people, and discrimination based on gender identity or expression, religion, caste, citizenship, or place of birth. Systemic and societal oppression against these groups are pernicious methods used to divide the working class and super-exploit those subject to them. The intersecting struggles against oppression are justified in their own right, and socialism is impossible without winning them.
  7. We are socialist feminists fighting for a world without cis-heteropatriarchy and all forms of gender based oppression that capitalism depends on to divide the working class, including: sexism, misogyny, misogynoir, transmisogyny, and anti-LGBTQIA+ sentiment. We see feminist struggles and struggles for queer liberation as intrinsically linked and recognize that gender oppression does not act in isolation but intersects with other systems of marginalization to super-exploit the affective, reproductive, and productive labor of working class people. Capitalism cannot exist without gender oppression; it relies on the unpaid labor that women have historically performed, and that women, queer people, and trans people continue to carry out. The material conditions for gender, queer, and sexual liberation will not exist unless a workers’ revolution dismantles capitalism and builds a radically democratic society based on the principles of socialism-from-below.
  8. We stand for a world without borders: free movement of all people, an open door for all refugees and immigrants, and the closing of all detention centers. Migration and the unfettered, free movement of people around the world is a human right.
  9. Capitalism was built on stolen people and stolen land. We see a particular necessity in standing for self-determination of indigenous peoples, and supporting land rights and governance for all. We understand that the oppression of Black people is the linchpin of the inner workings of a capitalist system that had an origin also founded on slavery. Movements against Black oppression are viciously attacked by the ruling class. A revolutionary breakthrough of Black people in this country would unleash all other anti-oppression movements and breathe new life and unparalleled confidence into them.
  10. We believe that the police are class enemies and can never be on the side of working people. As such, police unions have no place in the labor movement. The increase in and militarization of policing and the entire institution of the police are not designed to keep us safe; they are to enforce division and protect capital. We call for the institution of the police and prisons to be abolished and replaced with a restorative justice model.
  11. We believe in the public right to the city. We stand to fight landlordism, a system that exploits tenants as well neighbors and gentrifies cities. We believe decent housing should be free to everyone, and therefore stand in solidarity with the tenants fighting against oppressive rent-seekers and with the homeless fighting for a place to live. We demand a transformed and renewed access to urban life.
  12. From the catastrophic disruption of climate patterns to the degradation of arable land, from the threat of nuclear war to the toxification of our communities, it is clear that capitalism is making the planet unfit for human life. We fight for ecosocialism: an end to capital’s death drive, a decent and livable planet.
  13. We are anti-imperialists; we see the fight for socialism as an international one. Any war launched by the ruling class is bound to make the world more dangerous, dictatorial, and chaotic, pitting ordinary people against each other. Our duty is to oppose all US imperial interventions abroad. We believe that the phrase “workers of the world unite” is as relevant as it was when written 150 years ago, and is the only way toward a worthwhile future.
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