For the last few months I have had the honor of serving as Chairman of the Stonewall Democratic Club of Southern Nevada. In that time our club membership has doubled as has our bank account. We have also moved into the forefront of Democratic clubs in the State of Nevada.
This being an election year, SDSN is poised to be an important player in the 2010 election cycle. I hope you will re-elect me to lead us during this exciting period. As you may know, I have endeavored from the start of my current term to make SDSN the most diverse LGBT organization in the state. I feel we have achieved that through my expanding the board to include those who are traditionally under served in our community including women, people of color, the disabled and the Transgender community. I have also made it a point to bring straight allies on to the board and formed strategic coalitions with straight and LGBT non partisan political and social groups to further our goal of achieving full equality for all.
Nationally, SDSN is becoming known for taking the lead with the use of new techniques such as "Rapid Response" and flexing the LGBT community's political muscle through the use of Straw Polls and PR releases. In the past two months alone we have been mentioned in several local and statewide media outlets. In the LGBT activist community we are now looked to as a model of LGBT activism working within the system.
I would like to continue chairing SDSN for two reasons.
One, my work is not yet done.
I am a proud Democrat.
Thank you and I hope that you will see fit to re-elect me as Chairman of the Stonewall Democratic Club of Southern Nevada.
Recently, a group of people I am proud to call fellow activists and friends, led some pretty eye catching actions in DC. Dan Choi and Robin McGeHee both ended up getting arrested to further shine a light on the inequalities of being LGBT in America.
Many in the LGBT community dismissed these actions as mere "stunts". Further, they asked for "evidence" that these "stunts" actually had any affect whatsoever on the national zeitgeist. Then, they had the audacity to question whether or not the National Equality March had any lasting affect. All of this was said in order to say that the money sucking monster known as "Gay Inc" is somehow better suited to deliver us from the current shackles we wear as second class citizens.
I say if we depended on "Gay Inc" as we have up to now, we can just sit back and wait another 30 years until we MAYBE will be equal.
How many of you have ever heard of the Salt Tax which led (many years later) to India being free of the chains of colonialism? At the time, many British Imperialists dismissed Ghandhi's very public "stunt" of going to the salt flats and picking up salt he was forbidden to touch. It led to a never ending round of "stunts" until India was free.
Did you know that Rosa Parks didn't just happen to refuse to get up for a white man one afternoon? She had been trained at The Highlander Center. She knew how to pull a "stunt".
When MLK got started, the establishment Negroes who got invited to the White House under Mrs. Roosevelt told him to quiet down and let them handle it. They didn't want no "stunts" complicating the relationship they had already built up and Negroes just needed to wait until the time was right for colored folks to get their rights.
The Montgomery Bus Boycott was a "stunt".
Walking across that bridge in Selma was a "stunt"
Priests immolating themselves to protest the war in Vietnam and young men burning their draft cards were all "stunts".
Remember the picture of the long hairs putting daisies into the barrels of rifles during the war?
I firmly believe in "stunts".
As far as providing "evidence" of success goes, well, the March put thousands of activists in touch with one another all across the country. Everyday my inbox is full of actions going on from New Mexico to Maine and offers from across the country to help. Is it always about DADT or ENDA? No. In the last two days a massive outpouring of disgust with a sportscasters homophobic comments got him to issue a an apology. In MN a Black minister is being boycotted at a gospel convention because he is openly Gay. We are working on making sure that is brought to everyone's attention. In Tupelo MS, a furniture company is under constant bombardment from activists and I'd be willing to bet that they won't be holding a segregated prom to keep a young lesbian out.
Now, let's talk about what Gay Inc has done in 30 YEARS and Lord knows how many millions of the dollars they have sucked out of local LGBT communities. Please, evidence. As far as I know, hate crimes legislation. That's great, but, for a dollar to effect ratio plus time spent, it sorta sucks.
Give me "stunts" that cost some time on the cell phone and laptop that can affect change in days vs whatever the fuck Gay Inc does anyday.
Rory Reid address the Southern Nevada Stonewall Democrats Press Release - March 4th, 2010
"I am here to recruit you."
Those words spoken by Clark County Commission Rory Reid were familiar to the crowd of one hundred, packed into the Gay and Lesbian Center of Las Vegas for the Stonewall Democratic Club of Southern Nevada meeting. A cynic would accuse the Nevada gubernatorial candidate of egregious pandering. But for anyone following Rory's campaign, they'd know he has used the late Harvey Milk's words for months; in front of crowds of varying sexuality, race, age, education and social status, in all corners of the state of Nevada. He does this not to pander, or to be provocative. As Rory said during Stonewall Dems' meeting, he understands that like Harvey, and more recently President Obama, he can't just win this election, he must build a movement.
Nevada's current governor, Jim Gibbons (who is running for reelection against Rory), made his Republican pontifications over small government and low taxes a reality. In doing so, he's nearly choked the life out of the state. We are experiencing a deep depression and instead of making bold decisions to increase revenue for the state, he's cut vital services, state employees salaries (not his own of course) and even tried to eliminate the Nevada Equal Rights Commission (NERC), the agency that oversees the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. It’s the only agency in the state that resolves LGBTQ-related discrimination, and the only agency that enforces, SB207, a bill to end discrimination against transgendered persons in Nevada. This is not the first time Governor Gibbons has tried to trample on LGBTQ rights, he also vetoed SB 286, the bill allowing Domestic Partnerships in NV; a veto that was, thankfully, overridden.
Which brings me back to Rory. While he admits he does not know every detail to SB207, he strongly supports the rights of transgendered persons and feels they should have the same rights and legal avenues as everyone else if they are discriminated against. And he was appalled at the governor’s attack on NERC. Stonewall members reacted strongly to his suggestion that a study be conducted before Clark County employees are given Domestic Partnership rights. Rory insisted that he is willing to meet with and talk to anyone to provide him with more insight and understanding on the subject. His bottom line: as governor of Nevada, everyone is welcome, everyone is equal, and he will work hard to make it that way, but he needs our help.
Equality Democrats like Rory Reid need us. He needs us not to just vote for him, but to engage him, our peers, our neighbors and our friends. Rory Reid has a plan to pull this state out of this depression. Stonewall Democrats of Southern Nevada have been attending and hosting dozens of events each month, working to keep our majorities in all houses in all levels of government, but most importantly, to remove anti-LGBTQ bigot, Jim Gibbons from the governor’s mansion in Carson City.
We have come closer than ever before to repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, making marriage legal for everyone and getting rid of the abhorrent Defense of Marriage Act. Our hard work can not be undone by our own midterm election apathy. Rory is here to recruit you, and so am I. Please help me, and the Stonewall Democrats of Southern Nevada elect Rory Reid the next governor of Nevada www.RoryReid.com
Politically active LGBT single and looking to mingle! Love to to laugh and think. Big on bios especially Political and trashy Hollywood stuff. Love old movies and classic cocktails. I'm very laid back until I want something,at that point anyone in my way gets mowed down. I will be a city councilman in Las Vegas within the next five years. Very conservative total liberal. Hate idiots on the left and right. PC makes me gag (and not in a fun late 70's way). I laugh all the time! I used to be on American Bandstand and had a spotlight dance to some awful QuarterFlash ditty with my partner Nanette Wallinsky, I believe we were the first interracial dance couple on AB, "we're goin' rockin...."!