Radical/Progressive Queer News and Commentary
from Memphis, Tennessee
Saturday, October 02, 2010
One Nation March/Rally 10-2-2010
My partner Glenn and I joined the Socialist Party USA and the Socialist Contingency at the One Nation Together March Oct. 2. It was great to finally meed the national SPUSA officers and socialist comrades from across the country. And I finally got to meet David McReynolds!
Some of my highlights: Driving up to the march I got into a discussion with an older white man (in his 50s) who worked in a TN rest stop. When I told him I was going to the march, he said he thought everyone should have healthcare and that he worked two jobs and had no health insurance. He even agreed that we should expand Medicare to cover everyone. This from a working class man who I was afraid to discuss my politics with because I assumed he was a right-wing conservative.
I also ran into Lt. Dan Choi, who was kicked out of the military for being gay, and he was marching with a group of young LGBT people holding signs with the pictures of the 5 young gay males who have committed suicide in the past weeek.
I got into an argument with a couple of African-American women who objected to referring to gay rights as "civil rights." They support equal rights for gays but not gay marriage and they started throwing the Bible ad religion at us. They walked off, but we had a better interaction with an older black man and his younger daughter (I think). They admitted their was a lot of homophobia (they used that word) in the black community, but the man said he told his daughter he would rather she was with a woman that loved her than a man that abused her.
The crowd was incredibly diverse, unlike the Beck-Palin neo-Nazi rally last month. Lots of discussions about issues and the upcoming elections....
We marched with the Socialists and carried signs and chanted slogans critical of Obama and the Democrats, like "Obama is No Socialist, But We Are, But We Are!"
I admit I was wrong about the Socialist Contingency and now think it was a good idea, even though I didn't agree with everything some of the other groups believe or advocate. We agree on most things, and the big things that matter--the need to replace capitalism with democratic socialism! (We just don't all agree on how to get there.)