A nationwide day of protest against California’s Proposition 8 and other measures in last week’s election that banned same-sex marriage includes rallies planned in Denver, Boulder, Fort Collins, Colorado Springs, Durango and Aspen. Organized through the Join the Impact! Web site, simultaneous protests aim to call attention to the civil rights aspect of the issue with protests at 11:30 a.m. MST Saturday as hundreds of gatherings take place across the country.
As of Friday afternoon, Colorado protests had been set at the following locations:
• Denver at the City and County Building, 1437 Bannock St.
• Boulder at the Boulder County Courthouse, 1325 Pearl St.
• Fort Collins in Old Town Square at Maple and Linden streets
• Colorado Springs at the Colorado Springs City Hall, 107 N. Nevada Ave.
• Durango at the La Plata County Courthouse, 1060 E 2nd Ave.
• Aspen at the Gay Ski Week office, 215 N. Garmisch St.
Maybe Stonewall was Activism 1.0, ACT UP was Activism 2.0, the failed corporate activism of HRC and No On Prop 8 was Activism 3.0, and now we are witnessing Activism 4.0 being born. It’s virtually impossible to know you’re experiencing history in the making when you’re right in the middle of it. But our present generation with their SMS texting and their Twittering (aka “tweeting”) and their Facebooking are mad as hell over this, and it’s lookin’ to me like they’re not going to take it anymore. I sense the power could be shifting, from the suit-and-tie professional activists with their offices, their access, their press releases and their catered receptions, to the grassroots.
And Jonathan Rauch discerns a course under way that mimics another, familiar civil rights battle:
The civil-rights model tried to separate marriage from the political process, because we didn’t have nearly enough straight support to win. That left our opponents with the political field to themselves while we busied ourselves in the courts. Not any more. We now have enough straight allies to win, long-term, in the political arena.
To judge from the protests, that’s where we’ll be going. Goodbye Thurgood Marshall, hello Martin Luther King. Goodbye Lambda Legal, hello ACT-UP. Sure, more love, less anger than in the AIDS days. But the protests, provided they are peaceful and don’t turn hateful or anti-religious, point the way forward.