Friday, April 27, 2012

THE LET'S REACH 1 MILLION CAMPAIGN WORLDWIDE EVENTS ON APRIL 21 IRRITATES ESTABLISHED LGBT ORGANIZATIONS IN WASHINGTON

2012 Worldwide LGBTQIA Civil Rights March at One of Several Locations Across the Globe


If you visit and talk with any of the 6-8,000 participates worldwide, in addition to listening to any of the many amazing speeches given at various locations throughout the day, as well as view the many videos already surfacing on You Tube and the hundreds of photos already surfacing globally around the net, you will witness such excitement, enthusiasm, and commitment to equality such as you have never seen before.

Now if you read some of the articles having appeared in some of the well known LGBT publications, many of which rely on the support of and from the older established LGBT organizations (who have been working decades for our equality that we still don't have), you will see the bleak picture they are trying to paint of the worldwide event, rather than reporting on the positive aspects of this historic event at numerous locations that they were provided details on, along with some of the actual footage.  WHY IS THAT?

It is because new grassroots movements scare and intimidate many of these older established LGBT organizations because if their existence or value to our movement is diminished by the achievement of our equality, their donations and support will dry up very quick.  THIS IS THE REALITY OF OUR EQUALITY BEING A POLITICAL PAWN...

Is that what you want?  Here is a excerpt of an article having appeared in the Washington Blade:

In a statement released to organizers and supporters of the events, Knudson said between 6,000 and 8,000 people participated in the events in the U.S. and overseas.  He said the enthusiasm and impact the events would have in the U.S.and abroad would be far more significant than the number of people attending them. When asked why he thought most of the established U.S. national and local LGBT organizations chose not to participate in the marches, Knudson said sources familiar with various groups told him the groups don’t like to get involved in events that they don’t control. “I was point blank told by some that it is not proper for a new and young grassroots organization such as the Let’s Reach 1 Million People Campaign, to initiate such action as we did without first getting the approval of some of the older more established organizations,” Knudson told the Blade. "In doing so we stepped on a lot of egos and I was told egos of LGBT organizations do not heal very well or very fast,” he said.


Had they not been irritated and felt they had to make a response in one of the more respected LGBT publications around, they would not have made such an obvious egotistical statement as follows:

Veteran D.C. gay activists Bob Summersgill, former president of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance, and Rick Rosendall, the group’s current vice president, disagreed with Knudson’s assessment of the established LGBT groups. “Speaking for myself and GLAA, if we were so egotistical and controlling as Mr. Knudson says in his laughable generalization, we wouldn’t have the record of accomplishment that we do,” Rosendall said. “LGBT advocates in D.C. have a long history of coalition work, which is not about getting permission but about consultation.” Summersgill said organizers of the worldwide marches didn’t adequately communicate what they wanted people to do to advance their goals of equality“ other than to walk around while members of Congress were out of town.

Quite obviously Summersgill thought the efforts of the event were concentrated in DC, while failing to realize they were concentrated locally where some of the members of Congress were while being out of town from the DC area as he mentioned.  It was at these locations that the day brought about great successes.  The DC event was just that, for those members who remained during a recess and of course all of us know that the Senate and the House recess does not always coincide, which it didn't at this time as Summersgill alluded to.  It is not always about the "BIG BOYS" in DC (not necessarily the politicians, but the LGBT organizations), that has been a problem in the past.  If we don't take this education and enlightenment of society to the people who elect our politicians, LGBT equality will take so much longer to achieve and as soon as individuals like Summersgill realize that, we will see more advancement in our rights.

The comment by Rosendall about my laughable generalization is laughable in itself as that generalization came from individuals closely associated with those very LGBT organizations such as Rosendall is associated with.

I am not at all dismissing the achievements of these older established LGBT organizations and they in turn should not dismiss what grassroots movements have accomplished in history.  There are many forms, manners, and shapes activism takes and this new grassroots movement realizes that and numerous items of correspondence, telephone calls, and follow ups were made to the older established organizations and it was in the few responses we did receive, as well as conversations with some of the elder activists that the information was derived which led to the quotes in the article about the reasons, in my opinion, for their reluctance to participate.

                    
My own take on the event as occurred and the responses so noted by many...                                               Joe Knudson, Chairman of the 2012 Worldwide LGBTQIA Events

2 comments:

  1. Joe, you folks did a wonderful job. If the institutionalized queer organizations can't handle a new grassroots movement, then it's probably time they step aside and go by the by. Old ideas will die... new ideas flourish. Time to get over the egos and focus on what is the main objective... EQUALITY. You rock Joe Knudson!

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    Replies
    1. This campaign has highlighted that large LGBT organisations have developed a tendency for estrangement from the people they purport to serve ... much like political organisations ... perhaps it is fair to say that people in large equality organisations become too focused on political achievements at the expense of local engagement ;)

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