Metro Weekly

Humm: “True Democracy” Is “Not Easy” But Needed For LGBT Movement

Andy Humm raises more questions than he answers in his column introduced by Michael Petrelis at Petrelis’s blog, but it is a good thought piece — particularly now, as LGBT activists gather at Netroots Nation in Las Vegas.

The current disgraceful situation [of LGBT ] is in stark contrast to the first ten to fifteen years of the post-Stonewall LGBT movement when it was almost entirely grassroots, almost no one got a salary, and every big decision was decided in forums where anyone could attend and everyone could vote.

It was not easy being part of those contentious meetings, but that is how true democracy works and how grassroots movements are built–from the ground up. It wasn’t totally chaotic. The Gay Activists Alliance used Roberts Rules of Order. ACT UP used a consensus model. They were highly democratic and got a lot more done in a year than any of our current groups have been able to accomplish in decades.


[E]ven the agenda of GetEQUAL is not subject to an open democratic process. These self-styled radicals have essentially adopted the HRC agenda hook, line and sinker but are just demanding it more obstreperously. They criticize HRC but are really just playing bad cop in contrast to their own good cop role in the service of a narrow agenda–repeal of DADT and ENDA–that there hasn’t been a serious, community-wide debate about for almost 20 years.

Humm’s piece comes following Get Equal’s action blocking the roadway on the Strip in Vegas on Tuesday in a protest of the lack of action from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to advance the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, which led to arrests. Now, with Reid scheduled to speak at Netroots Nation on Saturday afternoon, the question is: What will Get Equal do on Saturday?

Check it out.

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