Friday, April 15, 2011

Wiener/MUMC Closed-Door Meeting
Plans Harvey Milk Day Events

Kudos to Matthew Bajko at the Bay Area Reporter for keeping tabs on the info is swirling about the community regarding the best ways to mark the second official state day of significance honoring Harvey Milk on May 22.

He writes this week about an old-fashioned rally and street protest/celebration I am helping to organize with Tommi Avicolli Mecca, and reports that a closed-door meeting took place recently at Supervisor Scott Wiener's office at which MUMC president's was present:

This year's Milk Day will take place Sunday, May 22 and coincides with the birthday of the late gay San Francisco supervisor, who became the first out politician in California when he won election in November 1977. ...

According to those involved in planning this year's celebration, a rally is slated to take place that day at Harvey Milk Plaza at the corner of Castro and Market streets. Immediately following will be a march to the site of Milk's old campaign headquarters and camera shop at 575 Castro Street. Specifics such as time and speakers have yet to be determined.

"That is all I know so far," said Steve Adams, president of the Merchants of Upper Market and Castro business association, who attended a recent planning meeting at District 8 Supervisor Scott Wiener's office to discuss how to mark the occasion. ...

While Matthew does not qualify the planning meeting at Wiener's City Hall digs as closed-door, I am making the assumption that it was invitation-only and closed-door but there were no public notices issued to the wide community beyond the merchants group. This is the first I'm hearing about the meeting, and I can also say that Wiener has held no community forums in the Castro to discuss ideas for marking May 22 as Harvey Milk Day.

If Wiener is not allergic to grassroots community engagement with Castro constituents who are not rich or donors of his, he would organize at least two open forums surrounding May 22. It does not sit well in my gut that all the public record shows so far about Wiener's plans for that Sunday have only involved the MUMC group and its control queen leader.

Harvey's legacy and message of inclusion and transparency are being trampled on by Wiener and MUMC, which is not right and ought to be changed. I'm not saying Wiener should not meet with the MUMC leader and listen to their concerns, but I am requesting that he expand the number of stakeholders who get to plan with him over May 22.

A simple town hall at the gay community center about engaging as much of the diverse local LGBT community for Harvey Milk Day, would honor not only Milk but also show us Wiener will try to be a supervisor for more than just a narrow slice of Castro stakeholders.

There is one solid month to go before May 22 is upon us. More than enough time for Wiener and his staff to organize some public meetings.

1 comment:

Shannon said...

Harvey Milk Festival is happening again on the other coast. For more information visit. www.harveymilkfestival.com
May20-22 2011 FREE ADMISSION. Music/ARTs festival honoring Harvey Milk and promoting Equality,come join us .