At our December general meeting, veteran public interest lobbyist Larry Pellegrini shared his deep knowledge of what goes on inside the Gold Dome and what the 2019 Georgia legislative session has in store for us. Pellegrini is considered the leader of the progressive organizations that gather at the Capitol every day during the session to oppose the many bad bills that would make life more difficult for all Georgians and especially marginalized communities, and to support the good bills that if passed could make life easier. To receive his weekly calendar of progressive community events, including lobby days for various good causes, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Volunteers formed a committee to work with partner organizations on a rally to take place on Jan. 13, the day before Kemp’s inauguration Jan. 14 (which is also the first day of the legislative session). Stay tuned.
Alexander Hernandez announced that the ten slots for our Dec. 29 visit to incarcerated immigrants at the Stewart Detention Center have been filled, and we passed the hat to cover gas money. The Immigrant Justice Working Group is also writing letters to our representatives urging the abolition of ICE.
The MADSA members present voted to sign on to Southerners on New Ground’s petition urging the City of Atlanta to stop participating in the Georgia International Law Enforcement Exchange (GILEE), a program that sends city police to Israel to receive training in repressive and racist policing tactics.
We also adopted a plan for members to form working groups more systematically, starting as less formal interest groups before meeting certain criteria to ensure they have structure and accountability. To start an interest group, establish a channel for it on MADSA Slack. For more info, contact email@example.com
On a lighter note, we formed a committee to hold a holiday party, again in January, launching the new year with good cheer and comradeship; date and place TBA.
During the final half hour, we engaged in our lively “socialist speed-dating” exercise, forming pairs to exchange ideas about Medicare for All. Promoting M4A is a national DSA priority, and MADSA is planning a canvassing effort.
Photos: Reid Freeman Jenkins