Archive for April, 2018

David Buckel

A nationally know advocate for gay rights and the environment died Saturday in a fiery Prospect Park suicide, with his self-immolation meant as a wake-up call to save the planet.  David Buckel an attorney for Lambda Legal left this note, “I am David Buckel and I just killed myself by fire as a protest suicide. I apologize to you for the mess.” “My early death by fossil fuel reflects what we are doing to ourselves,” he wrote, “a lifetime of service may best be preserved by giving a life…Honorable purpose in life invites honorable purchase in death. I hope that it is an honorable death that might serve others.”

We thank David for all that he has done for the LGBTQ community and his work against the destruction of the environment.

Rest in Power David Buckel.

To read the full story go to: Famed Gay Rights Lawyer Sets Self On Fire at Prospect Park In Protest Suicide Against Fossil Fuel. as published by the Daily News.

A BIG THANK YOU to Shaun King for this. This of course says a lot about what the U.S considers are their priorities. Chicago’s drinking water is full of lead and water pipes all over this country are failing and that is just a small amount of the problems we are facing. We have to get rid of this dirty rotten system, the sooner the better and stop the excuses that led nations to war.

This piece is again a collage of ideas put together in the service of the people. We would like to start this piece with two very important events that took place in our community in the past months. We stand with No Justice No Pride and Trans Queer Pueblo. The second part of this piece is dedicated to ourstories from history past.  This piece concerns police entrapment (yes baby it is still going on here today) in history and our people responds or not in fighting back or sitting back. Important fight back that continues today with groups such as No Justice No Pride and Trans Queer Pueblo. We stand with all of our people within the LGBTQ tribe who see the connection with the murder of Black Men and Women, with cops and ICE harassment of people and ourselves. We stand with all of our people who see the connections on why white middle class pride just doesn’t fit the bill anymore. We remember from ourstories this: In early 1952, leaders of the Mattachine became aware that the issue of entrapment of homosexuals by police in Los Angeles also affected Mexican Americans. In the latter regard the Mattachine was contacted by the local Civil Rights Congress (CRC), a Communist Party front group. The Mattachine also made an alliance with the Red-friendly Asociación Nacional México-Americana, which had its roots in organized labor but concerned itself with police brutality as well. ( 1 ) We realize that this is the only way to go. The only way to fight back.

News of Today

No Justice No Pride shows LGBT folks the way to go.

Here is a statement by No Justice No Pride about the Blue Lives Matter Flag flying at Nellies in Washington DC.

Nellie’s Sports Bar is Cancelled.

In the wake of the murder of Stephon Clark and non indictment of the officers who killed Alton Sterling, they have the audacity to fly a flag that tells us they don’t value Black lives NOT TO MENTION NO JUSTICE FOR KAYLA MOORE, A BLACK TRANS WOMAN WHO WAS MURDERED BY BERKELEY POLICE in 2015. Judge Breyer last week ruled in favor of the City of Berkeley and dismissed the case brought by the family of Kayla Moore. The judge thinks that we don’t have enough evidence to prove that the police “mistook her disability for a crime”. It was already so disgraceful that the judge threw out the claims of excessive force and wrongful arrest back in October of 2017. This most recent discarding of the humanity of people with disabilities is also what we are up against. Maybe this is actually better because now we can go back to the arguments about all three of the main claims and widen this movement back up again.

This is anti blackness.
#BoycottNellies
#NeverNelliesx

blue flag at nellies

Nellie’s a gay bar in Washington, D.C., was forced to apologize Saturday for hanging up a “Blue Lives Matter” flag outside its establishment after a group of gay police officers held a meeting there. The blue flag angered some people who claimed it was offensive to the Black Lives Matter movement and represented “anti blackness.”
Representatives of police departments across the country and an organization that manufactures and distributes the flag have said repeatedly that the flag was never intended to be used as a symbol of discrimination or racial injustice.
“The thin blue line stands for the sacrifice law enforcement officers of this nation make each day,” USA Today quoted Thin Blue Line, an organization that distributes the flags “We reject in the strongest possible terms any association of our flag with racism, hatred, and bigotry,” the organization told USA Today. “To use it in this way tarnishes what it and our nation believe in.”

Drew Ambrogi an organizer of No Justice, No Pride one of the groups behind the gay pride protests of the past few years told the Washington Blade the group learned about the flag being displayed at Nellie’s when one of its members walked past the bar last Friday and saw it hanging from a flag pole.

“We saw it as an issue and we posted about it pretty quickly,” Ambrogi said

“We now understand that flying this flag — at this point in time, in particular — was at best tone deaf, and at worst offensive. We sincerely apologize to our customers and our neighbors for this egregious mistake, and want to assure you that this flag will never fly at Nellie’s again. What it represents to you is not what we want to represent, or what we want our bar to be,” the D.C. establishment said in a statement posted to Facebook Nellie’s said it would be sending a donation to No Justice No Pride.

As many have said and we are saying it again, One can not love the oppressed and the oppressor, it just can’t be done.

A wonderful page from Trans Queer Pueblo Zine 2018. To check it out and other great information on what this upfront, out front and great group is going go to HERE.

Trans Queer Pueblo Phoenix Arizona

After a year of trying to convince Phoenix Pride Board that trans, queer, and gender-non-conforming people of color deserve an LGBTQ Pride where we can be safe from the police and the corporations that fund our deportation, we are saying goodbye.

Join us in reclaiming Pride’s roots of protest and resistance. Join us for LGBTQ+ Justice Week in Phoenix, AZ.

A bit of ourstories from history past.

Gay Entrapment

Police entrapment of homosexual men and harassment of gay bars were widespread; during the 1950s, cities such as Philadelphia and Washington, D.C., police arrested 100 men a month on misdemeanor charges relating to homosexuality. This harassment was not just limited to the 1950s. This harassment continued throughout the following decades and continues today. One of my very close friends was arrested for a “lingering stare at an undercover cop who was beating his meat in a highway rest stop. “This was in 2001. In 2016 police in Toronto arrested 65 men in a out of the way park some for as little as gazing too long at the undercover agent who again had his dick out, stroking it and the one who was the “come and get it” man.

The Connexion a gay newsletter published in the early 1970s had this to say, “Hartford gays are experiencing a new low in cruising freedom these days, Ask anyone who normally cruises the infamous Asylum Hill and Garden Street area. The numbers of people who have been taken down to the precinct houses are already legion and the arrests and friskings continue to mount… One individual who lives in the neighborhood was arrested for loitering while… [going] to the store for milk.” ( 2 )

Here in Hartford men were arrested for cruising along the river banks back in the mid 1980’s. As recently as last year men were arrested for cruising in a off the way park in Manchester Ct. and this blog heard that the cops in a wealthy suburban town were keeping their eye out for any cruising in a local park. Arrests for cruising go way back in history. All over police are still raiding bath houses and arresting men there, arresting men in parks, in tearooms and other places men meet up with other men. The cops, society and many of their friends in both the L & G and straight communities have this to say, “You’re okay as long as you stay within the lines that we draw, as long as you are willing to wear our straight jackets and as long as you are willing to be “just like us.” If not we will arrest you or have you arrested and from then on your life will be miserable.”

Will you join us in this fight?

How to swell the ranks of a movement, just let the cops act the way they do and bam, folks will turn out, join up and fight back. Here is one example from our early history the entrapment of Dale Jennings, his arrest, trial and the break up of the Mattachine and the founding of ONE INC.

“Were all homosexuals and bisexuals to unite militantly, unjust laws and corruption would crumble in short order … Were heterosexuals to realize that these violations of our rights threaten them equally, a vast reform might even come within our lifetime”. …Dale Jennings

We do not see this ‘vast reform’ simply as rights within this system, such as marriage, the military issue but see the bigger picture of liberation. As we said in the early days we do not seek to transform this system but to topple it. (more…)

NOTE: With renewed interest in the Ct. Witch Trials we wish to republish this piece from 2014. It is an important piece and we hope that more work will be done and Center Church will come around and do what is right.

Center Church. Is an apology in order from the church for the persecution of women?

Center Church in Hartford is doing some wonderful programs this month in an arts and heritage celebration. On October 12 they will be celebrating their 382nd anniversary of its founding. A wreath laying ceremony will take place at the memorial marker to the Reverend Thomas Hooker founding pastor of the church and leader of the city. The church on October 24 will also celebrate 20 years of being an open and affirming congregation and possibly one of the most liberal congregations in the city of Hartford as far as social work is concerned. But you know all the good this church does, and isn’t that what a church should be doing, feeding the people, tending to the sick, affirming all peoples, many can still hear the screams of Mary Johnson and others who were falsely accused of being witches, tortured and hung. So we feel we must ask a question or two about this churches past and how they are or aren’t coming to terms with this past. As our title asks, Center Church, Is an apology in order from the church for the persecution of women? 

Reverend Samuel Stone, Thomas Hooker’s number 2 man.

In Connecticut (1642):

“If any man or woman be a witch—that is, hath or consulteth with a familiar spirit—they shall be put to death.” Exodus xxii, 18; Leviticus xx, 27; Deuteronomy xviii, 10, 11. (Colonial Records of Connecticut, Vol. I, p. 77).

In New Haven (1655):

“If any person be a witch, he or she shall be put to death according to” Exodus xxii, 18; Leviticus xx, 27; Deuteronomy xviii, 10, 11. (New Haven Colonial Records, Vol. II, p. 576, Cod. 1655).

These laws were authoritative until the so called epidemic had ceased.

Witch Trial, by English artist William Powell Frith

Rev. Stone and crew flees religious oppression in England came here oppressed, accused tortured women. Stone was a Puritan, Protestants who wanted to purify the Church of England of its’ ceremony and other aspects that they thought were Catholic. They wanted the powers of the lordly bishops reduced and condemned priestly vestments, church ornaments and music. They wanted the church restored to its’ ancient purity and simplicity. This attitude put them in confrontation with The Crown and they were suppressed. So our discussion would have to lead us to, When the Oppressed become the Oppressor? What should we be doing to stop this injustice? How that would resound with the current situation of the state of Israel and the treatment of the people of Palestine and many other situations in this country and around the world. How does this relate today with the attacks against Muslims and Jews in the United States? Why must there always be someone to oppress?  (more…)

Folks around here are happy, very happy. The wonderful theater group, the Bread and Puppet Theater is going to stop in Connecticut during their spring tour. Here is the info that I received from them along with their Spring Touring Schedule.

The Basic Byebye Show expands on the traditional byebyes of funerals and train stations by turning the possibility of saying “byebye” into a political act. The Basic Byebye Show helps us say byebye to the gun — as a symbol of “freedom,” as an instrument of political influence, and as an economic dependency.
The show mourns the victims of the gun, and turns this morning toward the transformative political possibility of saying byebye to the gun.

Wednesday, April 11th, 8 p.m.
The Basic Byebye Show
Bucknall Theater, University of New Haven
300 Boston Post Rd., West Haven CT
Free and Open to the Public!

The Basic Bye-bye Show is a manifesto on transformation, inspired by Albrecht Dürer’s apocalyptic woodcuts, birch branches lost during an ice storm, and the daily news.

In The Basic Bye-bye Show a series of quiet object fantasies unfolds in black, white, and grey inside a small fabric stage printed with elementary words — “Resist,” “Bread,” “Yes,” “Sky,” “Riot,” “Byebye.” Outside, an orchestra of nonsense instruments arises, spins, and recedes. A birch forest grows. Sculpted clouds produce hands, chairs, and rain. The storm passes. The episodes that make up The Basic Byebye Show develop in abstract counterpoint to periodic handkerchief-assisted “basic byebyes” to various brutal unnecessities of our current politics.

B&P director, Peter Schumann, says of the show: “The Basic Bye-bye Show is based on the fact that our culture is saying its basic bye-bye to Mother Earth by continuing the devastating effects of the global economy on our planet – which is why our show proclaims the Possibilitarian’s basic bye-bye to capitalism in order to welcome the 1000 alternatives to this rotten system.” 

Here is the rest of their Spring Tour Schedule: (more…)

This is a ideas collage, in the service of the people. It is gleaned from many sources.

“We are getting beaten, raped and robbed and we are afraid to tell the police. Why because if they find out we are sex workers then what. On your knees bitch, suck my dick. I going to arrest you for prostitution or worse, give you a fucking slap upside of the head, a night stick up your ass. No baby the police are not my friend no matter what some folks want to tell us. In fact I think all cops are bastards and I hate them.”

*********************

Thought for everyday.

Who killed our sister? Can You Spell Cops!

Comrade Marielle Franco, Present!!

Brazil and the world have been shocked by the assassination of the Rio de Janeiro city councilwoman, Marielle Franco, of the PSOL (Party of Socialism and Freedom) and her driver Anderson Gomes on March 15, 2018. Millions have taken to the streets in Rio and in other cities throughout Brazil to denounce this crime and call for justice. Marielle was assassinated after she left a meeting called to advocate for the rights of Black women–one of the most oppressed, discriminated against and exploited sectors under capitalism in Brazil, where a Black is killed every 23 minutes. Today in Rio de Janeiro, millions of Blacks, workers, students and housewives live in terrible conditions of extreme poverty in favelas (poor neighborhoods) under the threat of violent state repression, drug traffickers, arms dealers and criminals. Marielle was a young, Black lesbian and socialist activist for the rights of women, Blacks, inhabitants of the favelas and the LGBT community. She devoted her life to systematically speaking out against police and paramilitary repression and focused on describing how state violence attains levels of ethnic and social cleansing.

President Michel Temer has declared that “This crime against an elected city council woman will not go unpunished.” The spokespersons of the governing parties and the establishment media have declared that the assassination of Marielle is the product of “organized crime.” However, Marielle was murdered when fourteen 9-mm-caliber bullets were fired into her car. It has come to light that the same type of bullets is used by the Federal Police (FP), and the latest investigations indicate that the bullets belong to a lot of ammunition acquired by the police in December 2006. To read more about this go to HERE. 

Blue Lives Murder! and that is exactly what they do.

Stephon Clark, an unarmed Sacramento man killed by police in his grandmothers backyard last month was shot from behind 6 times according to an independent autopsy released Friday. Two more bullets hit the 22 year old father in the leg and the arm March 18– wounds inflicted by police who said they were hunting a neighborhood vandal. In police accounts, cops said that Clark whose death prompted major protests across the country, had been facing them holding an object extended in front of him. The object was later determined to be a white cell phone. ( 1 )

We shouldn’t expect the police to be something they’re not. We ought to know that origins matter, and the police were created by the ruling class to control working class and poor people, not help them. They’ve continued to play that role ever since.

(more…)