Feb 14, 2009 10:29 PM GMT
President Bill Clinton will be making a big mistake on Sunday. Unless we act now to stop him. Let me tell you why.
If you've seen the film "MILK", you may know that I worked with Harvey Milk in the 1970s, including on a campaign to boycott Coors Beer for the company's anti-gay hiring policies and belligerent stance in contract negotiations towards their workers.
The Coors Beer Boycott taught me an unforgettable lesson about the power of coalitions in the struggle for equality. That lesson is being replicated today in the successful Manchester Hyatt Boycott in San Diego.
To the the surprise of many, President Clinton is scheduled to give a paid speech this Sunday at the Manchester Hyatt to the annual convention of the International Franchise Association. To give this speech, President Clinton will have to violate a union boycott and labor dispute -- the workers at the hotel lack job security and the housekeepers face onerous workloads.
But that's not all. President Clinton will also be offending supporters of marriage equality, including myself. Doug Manchester, the owner of the hotel, contributed $125,000 in early seed money to the Proposition 8 campaign.
We can't let this happen. President Clinton has the power to move his speech away from the Manchester Hyatt. And you have the power to convince him to do the right thing. Please sign the Courage Campaign's petition to President Clinton immediately and we will do everything in our power to get your signatures to him ASAP:
It is ironic that, by showing up at the Manchester Hyatt on Sunday, President Clinton will provide comfort to Ken Starr and the Prop 8 Legal Defense Fund, who are now trying to defend the constitutionality of Prop 8 before the state Supreme Court. Doug Manchester's significant $125,000 contribution to the "Yes on 8" campaign helped pass Prop 8 -- money that made Starr's case possible.
I think President Clinton should move his speech to another hotel in the area that treats its workers -- and the LGBT community -- with respect. If he doesn't, he will see me, and likely many others, this Sunday on the sidewalk in front of the Manchester Hyatt.
That is exactly where Harvey Milk would want me -- and you -- to be. While you may not be able join us there, I hope you'll add your signature right now and ask President Clinton to do the right thing before Sunday:
Thank you for helping the Courage Campaign and UNITE HERE build a broad-based coalition for equal rights and economic justice in California and across the country.
The Courage Campaign is an online organizing network that empowers over 500,000 grassroots and netroots activists to push for progressive change in California.
Help out, guys!