Monday, March 22, 2010


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.

Some thoughts.

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?

A "stunt".

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.

Big time.

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.

Read more:

Robin McGeHee


Todd said...

Thanks to a "stunt" - on Friday in which we zapped the phone lines of Center for Community Change (by directactionnetwork, queerrising, and Out4Immigration) - we got a lesbian bi-national couple to SPEAK ON STAGE at the Immigration Rally on Sunday (against much catholic opposition).

This is politics, not a private card game, and it is all that has ever really worked.

The fact Gay Inc. hates it is just proof it's a good idea, not that we needed any more.

Rising up!
Tif (NY)

Alan L. Bounville said...

Yay!!! I'm so glad the phone zap worked. I was pretty strong in my messages - threatened direct action at the march if openly LGBT people were not represented on that stage - even talked to QR members to make sure they were ready to act if we were not represented on the stage and the call for LGBT inclusion in the bill was not made as well.

I'm glad the catholics were upset - that makes me very happy. :)

Laura Kanter said...

!! So this makes Robin and Dan and Jim and all of the activists who have been risking EVERYTHING people take for granted freaking right-on STUNT -people!! I wanna be a stunt woman!