I'm here, still queer.
Staying at the Tabard Inn, which seems to be kind of a hostel for Republicans.
I doubt if it has been remodeled since the '79 March...
I've been checking the official website for the march (www.nationalequalitymarch.org) a couple times a day for updates and it's a good thing. As of an hour ago there are 56 related events scheduled over the weekend. Most of them youth oriented...mostly trainings on how to lobby or educational.
But not all. On Monday after the march, the artsy-fartsy dykes are meeting at the Museum of Women's Art for brunch and hormonal art appreciation: that sounds like a good follow up to the weekend to me. By Monday, I'm not sure if I will be artsy or fartsy..but maybe both. If so, I'm there!
And, the usual suspects are starting to come out of the woodwork. NGLTF finally woke up and announced (on Oct 6th!) they were co-hosting a reception and that several people identified with the organization will be speaking on Sunday. Unfortunately, true to recent form, hardly a leadership stance from a former national powerhouse. Sadly revealing.
Meanwhile, HRC figured out early that the weekend would be a great income-generating opportunity and got on board. Saturday's dinner is turning out to be the second most important event of the weekend because of the big news today with the Nobel Peace Prize announcement.
Everyone is wondering how it will affect Obama's scheduled speech at the dinner. Will he still show? Will he say anything different now?
I plan to be there...on the street however. Andy Thayer, an old ACTUp activist, has organized a picket line demanding LGBTQ action, not words, from the president. It will be interesting to see who and how many show up. My instincts tell me it's going to be a love-fest that no amount of protesting is going to deter. I'm sure the attendees will shun the riff-raff, as usual.
Because, the street activists, have always hated HRC and vice versa. Class warfare. I can hardly wait to see the reaction Barney Frank gets when he shows up. He publicly said the march was a "waste of time." That officially qualified him as elitist scum in the activists' eyes. Not news, however.
Meanwhile, I did pick up this little tidbit from the march website. The co-chairs and primary organizers finally and officially answered the question of what we want (besides a cold drink...it is 85 degrees in DC today):
"The march will be the first step toward a larger goal of creating a national movement - the 50 State Legislative Outreach Campaign - in all 435 congressional districts to demand of elected representatives full equality under the law. The march is just the beginning, we are not expecting to wake up on Monday morning with a federal bill on the president's desk to sign. We will no longer be told to wait. This march is our chance to demand full equal protection under the law, and it will help us realize the dream of Equality Across America: a committed group of grassroots activists in all 435 congressional districts."
Thank god, somebody finally told me why I am in town...
And, speaking of committed grassroots activists, you'll love this. I told Phil Siegel (yet ANOTHER ex-NAMES Project alum doing the heavy lifting behind the scenes) that I would help him on Sunday...he's in charge of media.
So, he's put me on at 7 am- checking in media, I think on the Mall.
Ahh, the steamgrates at dawn...
If he hands me a walkie-talkie I'm going to throw it at him. I'm taking a stand on being anti-clipboard too.
The good news is the weather is the best I've ever experienced here...but, who knows by Sunday.
I know, always the hopeful pessimist.
I'll be on the streets tonight at Dupont Circle to check out who's showing up and why. So far, it seems like I'm only running into LGBTQ people from Utah. Go figure.