On the first weekend of February, Twin Cities DSA chapter members got together at UNITE HERE! Local 17 to watch a documentary about the Minneapolis Teamsters strikes in the 1930s. Protesting low wages, Minneapolis Teamsters went on strike in 1934 in what would become a turning point in the labor movement nationally.
During this strike the Teamsters, aided by other unions and working class people of the city, confronted a violent police force which, using live ammunition, killed two workers and wounded dozens more. The workers overcame this, the national guard, and red scare tactics by the bosses and media to achieve a momentous victory, which gave dramatic raises to the workers and inspired a wave of labor activity across the country.
After the documentary, DSA members hung around to discuss what lessons could be learned from the Teamsters’ victory on the picket line, as well as how DSA can help build the conditions for similar successes in the increasingly active labor movement today. In a time when workers are rising in the Twin Cities and across the country, it was inspiring to see the determination with which the Teamsters fought and won decades ago. With the exciting prospect of more labor actions on the horizon, conditions are ripe for Minnesota to again be a focal point in the labor movement, and TCDSA is looking to play an important role in building that movement!
If you couldn’t make the movie night, or want to discuss how you can get involved in building the labor movement in the Twin Cities, join us on February 22, 2023 to discuss the book “Teamster Rebellion” by Farrell Dobbs on the same topic!
By Dan B.