Monday, February 05, 2007

Act Up America March 29 Healthcare For All Die-In at San Francisco Democratic Party Headquarters

I'm holding two meetings to get the March 29 SF Die-In organized. Details, details, details:

The first meeting is on Wednesday, February 7, from 5 to 6 pm, and the follow up meeting will be Wednesday, February 14, also from 5 to 6 pm.

Both meetings will be at the 3 Dollar Bill at the gay community center, 1800 Market Street, near Octvia.

I'm organizing under the name Act Up America for SF on March 29.

Why? Well, after having either run into someone from an old ACT UP chapter, or been given the name and contact info for a veteran in SF, or heard from other fellow activists from the bad old days, who saw my name in the NYT last week, and having asked them all to come out into the streets one more time, with all saying a resounding "Yes!"

John Shaw, who I met in the late 1980s in NYC and now lives in SF, is pitching in to co-organize the March 29 action with me.

Just the fact, for your consideration.

Date: Thursday, March 29

Time: 12 noon

Location: Democratic Party HQ, 601 Van Ness Avenue

Demand: Heath care for all; plans from all candidates

Actions: Speak out and die-in

Minimum number of people needed: 50

With all of the Democratic candidates passing through SF raising dough, we can send them a message at the Dems SF HQ, making their office an ideal site for some acting up. Plus, 601 Van Ness is very accessible, making it more likely we will attract the 50 needed for a good die-in.

And the fact that we have Rep. Pelosi (not) representing us in Congress, and lots of Bay Area folks fed up with business as usual from the Dems and demanding real change, it's plausible to see many people easily turning out for this action at the Democratic Party's SF HQ.

The Act Up America SF Die-In on March 29 is first and foremost a much-needed street action. It's also a chance for me to pull the old-timers together to honor ourselves and our dead fellow street activists.

The SF Die-In is part of a longer agenda. I intend to schedule ACT UP related events at the main public library during Pride month, when more out of towners from other former chapters might be in SF, and really make the library events a remembrance and rekindling of the activist spirit.

I also want to use the June SF ACT UP library events to announce and organize the Act Up America Labor Day Die-In for Des Moines, to really put ACT UP and our approach to demanding health care during Vote 2008.

Getting the word out that SF is doing a die-in in conjunction with NYC on March can only build interest in both actions, and spur actions in other cities.

In addition to the many ACT UP survivors in the Bay Area who would likely show up March 29, I expect to also work on getting folks at AIDS groups and City Hall and the local gay Dem clubs and the progressives and the Greens, making for a truly large and vibrant, effective action.

To recap, here's my calendar:

February 7: SF organizing meeting
February 14: SF organizing meeting
March 29: Act Up America Die-In For Health Care at SF Dem Headquarters
June: Public library readings, remembrances, organizing
September 2: Act Up America Die-In For Health Care in Des Moines

Want to make the March 29 and other actions become reality? Got any feedback for me? Then come to the planning meetings.

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