Those of you who’ve read my writings before already are quite aware that I consider the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) to be a pack of liars, an anti-democratic corporate entity that is only interested in empire building, not winning rights for glbT people.
I’ve known and called Joe Solmonese a liar before, so many times I’m tired of saying it. If you don’t agree, you’re either ignorant in general, or a total dumbass. But, never before, have I equated him to the rapscallions I’m about to, nor have I ever made the comparisons between HRC and the organizations I’m about to.
Read this post, from the famous Houston transgender attorney, Phyllis Frye. Read it carefully. My comments follow it.
Phyllabuster: National HRC called the Houston Police about Saturday
I just finished a very pleasant meeting, in my law office with the
Houston Police Department about the scheduled protest of the HRC
event in Houston this Saturday from 4:30to 7:30 pm, downtown at Polk
and Avenue of the Americas (DETAILS PASTED BELOW).
It seems that in response to my national Phyllabuster about our
protest, …… GET THIS …… the National HRC called the Houston
HPD and I had a very nicemeeting. I do not foresee any problems. HPD
was so courteous that Iwas given a “Demonstration Guide” that they
published in 2003 to assistcitizens in expressing their 1st Amendment
rights will not violating anylaws. I told HPD that I would scan it
and attach to my list. It isattached herein as good general
During the chat with HPD, I was also
informed that HRC has also instructed the hotel security to ask us
to leave if we attempt to pass out any written information or
ask folks to wear our stickers.
I always thought thatHRC was big on education and discussion.
Well, we will be there (read reposting below).
andwe will be peaceful,
andwe will be within the law,
andwe will be protected by HPD,
andwe will attempt to hand out our lapel stickers.
############ ######## repost of event details ############
Phyllabuster: Protest HRC Event, this Saturday,April 12, Houston
The HRC event is scheduled to begin at 6PM. That means some of the
ultra-rich-donors will arrive early forpre-gala cocktails.
I suggest that we plan to begin at 4:30 PM tocatch those coming early
and stay until 7:30 PM. That should be enough asthe event begins at
6:00 and most folks — even the late comers — willhave passed our
demonstrations by then.
The convention center hotel in downtown Houstonis bounded by Dallas
St, Avenue de las Americas (running in front of the GeorgeR. Brown
Convention Center), Polk St and Crawford St.
The two primary entrances are on DallasSt and on Avenue de las
There is an elevated pedestrian bridge from theGeorge R. Brown and
another from the Parking Garage.
The Parking Garage’s vehicle entrance is at PolkSt and Avenue de las
I suggest that you park in the ParkingGarage or on a nearby street
and meet at that corner of Polk St and Avenuede las Americas.
Either myself or Josephine Tittsworth on herscooter or Vanessa
Edwards-Foster — one or all of us will be at thatorganizing spot —
will ask you what you want to do and direct you to where youwill be
the most effective.
I suggest three outside teams and one insideteam.
The outside teams will be for signs. Isuggest
(1) the corner of Polk and Avenue de las Americas,just off of that
(2) the corner of Dallas and Avenue de lasAmericas, and
(3) along Dallas near Crawford, just before thedrive in for that
Any and everyone driving in will see those threespots.
The inside team will be several of us tomix and mingle and convince
attendees to be supportive of full GLBT inclusionand to wear our
offered lapel stickers (artwork below).
I have pasted two artworks hereon. They are JPEG files that you can
probably right click to lift and copy toyour computer. Most Kinkos
will take a jpeg file and turn it into a nicelarge and readable
poster for a reasonable fee. Or you canmake your own sign. All
efforts are welcome.
BUT DO NOT PUT YOUR SIGN ON A STICK. Astick could be construed as a
I have the first artwork printed onto 1000 lapelstickers. The inside
team can walk amongst the guests at the eventand ask if they will
wear the lapel sticker. I especially hope thatMatthew Shepherd’s
mother (the keynote speaker) will wear a lapel sticker.
The outside teams will also have lapel stickers
So, mark your calendar THIS Saturday, April12.
Make your sign or poster if you wish or goto Kinks and give them the
artwork. I have otherartworks. If you want other artwork files, let
Come and park and walk to the corner of Polk andAvenue de las
Americas at 4:30’ish and look for me or Josephine orVanessa. Plan to
stay until 7:30’ish. It should be fun!
ARTWORK ONE SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED FOR LAPELSTICKER 3.75″ x 2.5″ BUT
WOULD ALSO MAKE A GREAT KINKO POSTER.
ARTWORK TWO SPECIFICALLY DESIGNED FOR BUMPERSTICKER BUT EASILY USED
BY KINKOS TO MAKE TWO LONG SIGNS CUT FROM ONEPOSTER.
IF YOU WANT OTHER ARTWORKS, LET ME KNOW AND IWILL SEND.
Ohh-kaaay. Let’s see here. The Houston HRC dinner’s Saturday night – my calendar says it’s April 12, half the time I don’t know what date it is, anyway. And Houston area T activists are gonna protest it – damn right, I’m down with that, I’d join ’em if there were seats on an airplane available from here, which there aren’t. But the part that gets me is this: THEY SENT THE COPS TO TALK TO PHYLLIS FRYE DAYS BEFORE THE EVENT.
I only take that one way: HRC was trying to use the Houston Police to intimidate an organizer of the protest to call it off.
Would somebody explain to me, please, how this differs from having a firehose pointed at the protesters? (Selma, AL) Or having National Guardsmen carrying automatic weapons? (Kent State) Perhaps it’s closer to having Arkansas State Troopers present to make sure a couple coed students made it safely to their classrooms past Orval Faubus and hundreds of screaming rednecks – I don’t know. Whose side ARE the Houston cops on? Are they going to be there to protect the transpeople’s (and everyone’s) right to peacefully protest? Or are they going to be there to protect the poor, downtrodden, rich gay guys from having to deal with the impudent trannies? I doubt the cops know.
Joe Solmonese goddamn well knows the Number One fear of most transpeople is to be arrested – and with good reason. They know what this threat means, the symbolism involved. Threatening transgender protesters means 10 times what it means to a group of straight, or even gay and lesbian people. Vince Lombardi once said that, if and when a quarterback passes the ball, 3 things can happen, and 2 of them are bad. Basically, nothing good can ever come to a T person once they check into the Steel Bar Inn.
They’re fucking with the wrong persons. Phyllis, Vanessa, and Jo are made of sterner stuff than most T people I know. They’re also smarter than most, and they’ll know how far they can go to make the point and not be in danger. Still, this is a blatant attempt to break the demonstration, to scare off the demonstrators, to suppress the idea the protesters plan to extol (that ENDA without T inclusion is meaningless and morally bankrupt, a notion I fully believe in). HRC’s use of the Houston Police Department to attempt to suppress this demonstration is morally the same as the forbidden fruit that was left hanging in the trees by the Ku Klux Klan, or the hangings of the bodies of city officials in the city squares after the Nazi German panzer troops overran towns in the countries they conquered.
So, Joe Solmonese and David Smith, how’s it feel to be Bull Connor? How’s it feel to suppress dissent in the same manner Nathan Bedford Forrest thought appropriate? Does the possibility of becoming just like Benito Mussolini warm the cockles of your heart the way a fucking nasty-ass Appletini does? Will your ignorant and misguided attempt to stifle dissent among your banquet attendees end up with a one-act play, in which the Houston PD plays the part of the Ohio National Guard, T people are the people killed at Kent State, and you, Mr Solmonese, are the second coming of Richard Milhous Nixon (with David Smith as H.R. Haldeman?) I hope not. But you’ve put the pieces in place to cause that to happen.
Mr. Solmonese, we’re aware of your attempts to stifle dissent in Atlanta, Phoenix, and other cities. In other places, the protests have gone on, with obvious cuts in attendance and monies raised. The protests will no doubt continue, and will make it impossible to even start a steering committee (only good for steering money towards DC and not from it to benefit local efforts, I will point out) in places you haven’t cursed with one, yet. But free speech is allowed in this country, despite the best efforts of the GOP to eliminate it with the Patriot Acts. The T community is going to continue to point out to you that you lie, that you cheat, that you steal, and that you are dishonest and unreliable. But now, you’ve handed us one more weapon – open prejudice and open bigotry.
It didn’t look good in the 1960s.
It looks worse now.
Come to think of it, don’t and look a lot alike?
Presently reading: John Adams, by David McCullough
On the turntable: “Who’s To Bless And Who’s To Blame”, by Kris Kristofferson