Saturday, November 15, 2008

A Huge Rally in New York

The rally at City Hall today, part of Join the Impact, stretched for blocks and blocks, thousands and thousands of people, as politicians and activists addressed the crowd. You literally could not see the end of the crowd from where the stage was set up.

It was an amazing show of support from an enormous cross-section of New Yorkers and of course people from all over the area, though I have to be honest that this kind of demonstration doesn't jazz me up. People were penned in for blocks in a narrow strip of the street and sidewalk, and most of them were not able to see or hear the speakers. There was no marching, no walking, no movement at all. I find that disempowering, and unlike the march on Wednesday night at the Mormon Temple at Lincoln Center -- and the ACT UP demos of the past -- people didn't just take the street and own it. They stood in place.

Still, the crowd was energetic and chanting, had some great signs and there was a lot of support from the cars going by. And once again we saw this wonderful array of people, including many young gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and straight people. Speakers included New York City Council leader and open lesbian Christine Quinn, and Congressman Anthony Weiner. Joe Jervis at JoeMyGod, who I had the pleasure of hanging with at both the Out 100 Party last night at Gotham Hall and at the demo this afternoon, has a whole lot of photos on his blog.