[Marxism] 1, 000 Greens/Socialists/Indies rally for Nader in SanFrancisco (no Gays need apply!)

John Obrien causecollector at msn.com
Sun Jul 18 19:47:35 MDT 2004

In all this enthusiasm for the Nader-Camejo campaign which Carlos Petroni reported from the Frontlines newspaper email list, I reviewed the list of speakers and noticed that this rally in the City of San Francisco at a school, just three blocks from the heavily Gay populated Castro Area, had no Gay/Lesbian activist listed as a speaker?

I heard Ralph Nader on televsion last week say that his platform was the best for Gays and Lesbians.  So why was there no Gay or Lesbian activist listed among the speakers in of all places San Francisco?  One could not be found, after a valiant search was done?

One of the real complaints that progressive Gays like myself continue to have about much of the Left, is their doing the same thing as their right wing counterparts, in trying to marginalize Gay and Lesbian lives.  

Some may wish, that ignoring Gays and Lesbians, will prevent Gay and Lesbian rights issues from being addressed. ("Can't they just go away!!")   I can assure those who hold this wish - that they are wrong.  You will have to endure images of two men kissing - no matter how much you might share with Pat Robertson, in feeling it is personally disgusting.  

If you want to have a real progressive movement - then make it so - and be inclusive not exclusionary.  I do not want to hear that no Gay or Lesbian group approached the Nader - Camejo campaign to be listed at this rally.  I suspect political sophisticated people who did this event (in the short time they had) could have made a couple of phone calls to get a representative or two of this Community.

Deeply disappointed with the organizers awareness (and message of exclusion being broadcast to the GLBT Community about this event)

  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Frontlines newspaper 
  To: marxism at lists.econ.utah.edu 
  Sent: Friday, July 16, 2004 10:06 PM
  Subject: [Marxism] 1, 000 Greens/Socialists/Indies rally for Nader in SanFrancisco

   Received this from a participant:

  ------------------------ forwarded message -----------------------

  Building the Movement and the Party

  Just a quick report.  More later.

  Over 1,000 enthusiastic Greens, socialists, independents and no few Democrats cheered, chanted, played music and discussed politics during the kick-off rally for Nader-Camejo in San Francisco today.  Around 300 Green activists were among the crowd, showing clearly where the local San Francisco Bay Area Greens stand on this Presidential Election  add those votes to the state polling, please. (The local San Francisco Green Party 's leadership opposes Nader-Camejo, but they are completely isolated)

  The event was organized by Matt Gonzalez, the Avocado Institute, the ISO, assorted Greens from the Bay Area and other socialist groups.

  Members of the Progressive Left Movement (a local coalition of Greens/socialists and independents) registered over 40 new voters as Greens, 23 as Democrats and 28 as decline to state.   Twenty volunteers for Lucrecia Bermudez for Supervisor campaign distributed 850 pieces of literature and signed up 30 people who are willing to volunteer for this local campaign (http://www.lucreciabermudez.com).

  Among those present were also members of the Peace and Freedom Party and their candidate for the US Senate who spoke at the rally.  Other speakers included, of course, Matt Gonzalez, Peter Camejo, the leaders of the Centro Azteca, Pat Gray, Green candidate for Congress...

  More than half of those attending got copies of Frontlines newspaper (http://www.sf-frontlines.com) and many more bought copies of Socialist Workers and other left publications.  Hundreds signed the petition to put Nader-Camejo on the California ballot and many more signed up as volunteers for the campaign.

  The rally included a small number of Democrats (9 to be exact) parked outside the Mission High School, with hostile signs.  They were surrounded by an ocean of Nader-Camejo supporters who kept them in line (some of the Democrats were particularly aggressive).  I left before Nader spoke as I was responsible of carrying back literature and tables.  When I left, more people were arriving to the rally. 

  Read the latest issue of Frontlines at http://www.sf-frontlines.com 
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