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  • « To my bah humbug friends… | Main | Back to the future on gay rights? »

    November 20, 2008

    Dancing while gay America burns

    Posted by: Chris

    Solmoneselauper It wasn't enough for "the nation's largest gay political group" to pat itself on the back as one of "the top five winning member interest groups" in this year's election, despite the passage of four more anti-gay ballot measures, including Proposition 8 eliminating gay marriage in California.

    Now word has it that out-of-touch "leadership" at the Human Rights Campaign is also planning a GLBT "inauguration ball" for next month. It was bad enough that HRC refuses any responsibility for the abysmal "hide-the-gays" strategy they trotted out once again in California, or its 0-30 record fighting anti-gay ballot measures. They can do their denial in their dancing shoes.

    As boneheadedness goes, this rivals even the Big Three automaker CEOs flying corporate jets to Washington with their hat-in-hand to taxpayers.

    If HRC follows through on rumored plans for their ironically named "Equality Ball," they will have fully mastered the art of self-parody. Even "hockey mom" Sarah Palin's small fortune on clothing can't compare to Joe Solmonese and company donning tuxedos and ball gowns while the rest of us are taking to the streets -- no thanks to HRC, of course, which offered no resources or assistance for the National Day of Protest.

    Seeing as how every good party craves a theme, let me suggest one for HRC's Equality Ball, should it come to pass: Irrelevance.

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    Comments

    1. Lucrece on Nov 20, 2008 2:51:51 PM:

      OK, everybody pretty much dislikes HRC.

      What worries me is your ever more apparent unhealthy obsession with them.

    1. Andoni on Nov 20, 2008 3:55:16 PM:

      The problem with HRC is that they will not present themselves to the Obama administration and Congress as the voice of the LGBT community.

      We have to make sure that they do not get away with this.

    1. Andoni on Nov 20, 2008 3:59:17 PM:

      Opps. Typo. Above comment should say "now" not "not"

    1. Charlie on Nov 20, 2008 9:22:27 PM:

      I think Chris' "obsession" stems from the fact that many, many gay people do not yet realize that HRC is actually part of the problem, not part of the solution. As long as there are people on here defending HRC (and I got into quite a heated argument over HRC's validity in a separate thread, just a few days ago), then I fully support Chris' choice to continue to hammer at them. It may be an obsession but I don't think it unhealthy at all. Just my two cents.

    1. Chuck on Nov 21, 2008 2:24:00 AM:

      @Charlie: I'm with you. I too support Chris' choice to continue to hammer at them. The question is, is there anyone home to hear us hammering away?

      As an ex-member of HRC, I can tell you that I have had my fill of hearing about flashy, expensive, tuxedo and ball-gown dinner parties and fund-raisers that cost more to put on than they collect, only to have my email box filled with copious email pleas begging for more money for this that or the other "crisis" facing the gay community.

      HRC is, indeed, part of the problem facing gays, and not the solution as they present themselves to be. There is an old expression. "A bureaucracy, once created, continues to exist long after the need for it has passed."

      HRC has become nothing more than a bureaucracy and the needs of the gay community have changed. Aware only of it's own need for more money, it long ago lost touch with what the gay community needs.

      And so it is with albatrosses.

    1. Chuck on Nov 21, 2008 2:25:14 AM:

      @Charlie: I'm with you. I too support Chris' choice to continue to hammer at them. The question is, is there anyone home to hear us hammering away?

      As an ex-member of HRC, I can tell you that I have had my fill of hearing about flashy, expensive, tuxedo and ball-gown dinner parties and fund-raisers that cost more to put on than they collect, only to have my email box filled with copious email pleas begging for more money for this that or the other "crisis" facing the gay community.

      HRC is, indeed, part of the problem facing gays, and not the solution as they present themselves to be. There is an old expression. "A bureaucracy, once created, continues to exist long after the need for it has passed."

      HRC has become nothing more than a bureaucracy and the needs of the gay community have changed. Aware only of it's own need for more money, it long ago lost touch with what the gay community needs.

      And so it is with albatrosses.

    1. Fiona on Nov 21, 2008 7:31:26 AM:

      Here here Chirs - you go for them - someone as intelligent and articulate as you is the voice we need to have heard. This organisation is a gargantuan dinosaur. I for one am right behind you and your "healthy" obsession.

    1. mademark on Nov 21, 2008 1:43:33 PM:

      As the younger activists find a way to channel all the energy unleashed since Prop 8 and the other amendments, HRC will lose whatever significance it has left. No one will need to obsess over them, they'll just die on the vine. I don't know what's more absurd, naming their ball the "Equality Ball" after having our equality shoved up our arses, or having an inaugural ball at all. Obama will give us no more than Clinton did (he's already postponing any effort to repeal DODT until 2010). Had HRC (and a lot of lgbters) put as much effort into defeating Prop 8 as they did into electing Obama perhaps it would have failed, I don't know. But I feel like the t-shirt I saw: I voted for the first Black president and all I got was this lousy constitutional amendment. In the scheme of things we do not matter to Barack Obama, or at least no more than we can matter without costing him. That's not harsh, it's just the truth. We don't owe him an inaugural ball, and HRC throwing one (for him or itself) is a bit like the band playing on.

    1. bashed on Nov 26, 2008 12:04:03 PM:

      The HRC was born out of the Greenpeace canvass in the 1990's. They paid us to collect names, get paid by the name of Pride events. I was then the only open gay person and was asked if this may be OK for the canvass, in 28 states, to moolight. I made a mistake and they were allowed to be born,In hindsight I would of said no, we have enough parties and talkinh heads. But, we did, they collected a quarter million names, paid some people, did not pay others. Created anger amoung those who worked hard to collect the names and addresses. These were straight people mostly, snd they did most of the birth work. Soon after I horribly attacked by gay bashers. My artner was hit in the head, suffered post tramatic stress and died and was never the same and finally died because of his prolonged action from that night we were attacked. The HRC, had dropped all work on hates crimes at this time. If you need to put on suit, eat at a big party, maybe meet a star, or figure, then go to the parties. That's what, all, they do. If you want real work to get done support hate crime organizations and the Nationsal Gay and Lesbian Task Force. All that money for parties has been taken away from effective campiagning.

    1. Kevin on Nov 30, 2008 12:29:11 PM:

      I think all the talk about Joe and HRC and the gay leadership is far too timid, to the point of being blather.

      How about you guys show some balls and demand that Joe be fired, and lead a real movement to boycott businesses of gay donors who back him etc? You want to actually ACCOMPLISH something? Start with getting Joe Solomonese's head on a plate, and let it be the history-making opening shot of a real revolution in the gay movement.

      Until something like that happens, this is all a lot of hot air and "hope" and, to be frank, total garbage.

    1. Attmay on Dec 1, 2008 1:12:41 AM:

      Then I'll do it:

      Fire Joe Solomenese and all the do-nothing party planners. Heads need to roll.

      Screw "hope," let's see some action!

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