Country’s Largest LGBT Activist Meeting Being Held This Week In Baltimore

More than 2,500 advocates and activists are heading to Baltimore tomorrow for the start of Creating Change, the 24th annual National Conference on LGBT Equality, running from January 25 to 29.

On Thursday, many attendees will join members of the ACLU, Pride at Work, the Service Employees International Union and the American Association of University Women, to demonstrate against bullying, job discrimination and pay inequity and to urge Congress to pass the Employment Non-Discrimination Act.

The conference also includes  talks by National Gay and Lesbian Task Force director Rea Carey (right), Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan and NAACP President Benjamin Jealous, who delivers the keynote address on Thursday, as well as skill-building workshops, networking sessions, meetings for religious leaders. and a musical performance by Wilson Cruz.

Photo: Brian To photography

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  • John

    Thats great…and I’m REALLY not trying to be bitchy…but Wilson Cruz? Why waste the hotel room?

  • patrick

    I love Wilson Phillips. That’s gonna be so f’n excellent.

  • jeff4justice

    I wish the mega LGBT groups would discuss the following:

    (they probably won’t)

    1) In these economic times, why don’t some of these groups merge and accommodate each other’s ideas to prevent breakaway groups. Why don’t PGLAG, GLSEN, GSA, and Trevor Project merge? Why don’t HRC, Marriage Equality USA, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, and Get Equal merge? Why don’t Lambda Legal and the National Center for Lesbian rights merge?

    What is the point of this over duplication? Making the LGBT community appear to be bigger is not nobler than working to make things better efficiently.

    2) When they discuss “pay inequity” will they address why it’s necessary to pay their executive directories 6 figure salaries?

    Isn’t paying leaders of an equality movement 6-figures counter-incentive to achieving equality expediently?

    How will they ensure a living wage and health benefits for all of their staff? Could they employ more interns if they cut back on executive director pay?

    3) Just as MLK took on LBJ over the Vietnam war, if the leaders of equality truly believe in the ideals of liberty and freedom and equality then when will they take on Obama over the unnecessary wars, indefinite detention, and the Patriot Act?

    4) When will the mega LGBT groups acknowledge and endorse the 100% pro-equality platforms of the Green, Peace and Freedom, and Libertarian parties?

    5) When will mega LGBT groups speak out against LGBT on LGBT discrimination, classism, elitism, racism, and segregation?

    6) When will the mega LGBT groups go after the profiteers or glorifying condomless sex just as they went after Ronald Reagan?

    7) Why is there no LGBT group or network to help LGBTs in poverty help afford medial care (including gender reassignment surgeries) and personal crisis assistance?

    8) What will the mega LGBT groups do to develop more youth and adult opportunities for mentorship and reverse the disproportionate availability of sugar daddy exploiters over noble mentors to help LGBT people from poor backgrounds break the out of poverty and attain a successful career?

    9) What will LGBT groups do to ensure no LGBT person is left behind as the disparity between big-city LGBTs and small town/rural/suburb continues to leave many without LGBT groups, centers, and access to support and friendship opportunities?

  • Steve

    Don’t be silly. It is all about relationships and egos. Each person (and each organization) has their own set of priorities, and their own goals, and imagines (justified or not) that they are a leader in the effort to achieve those goals.

    The great majority of political organizations do not generate much cash flow or pay large salaries. As for your complaints 3-9, there are some people (and their organizations) working on each of those things. If you want, you can try to get some followers and build your own organization. Large political organizations align their goals with the available political support — that’s how they get to be large. Organizations that work on things that don’t have much support, don’t get to be large organizations.

    It is not usually helpful to merge organizations, or to knock down any of the individuals who lead them. Doing so would only bruise egos, distract from the real goals of each organization, and reduce the number and effectiveness of those people. As long as a number of people and organizations are working on a (generally parallel) set of goals, some of them will make some progress. Each time any of them succeeds, we all win.

    You need some cheese to go with your whine. Smile, and be happy. Progress usually is not neat and orderly. As long as it progresses, the details will get worked out in the process.

  • Lefty

    @John: Because he’s talented and awesome and has done a shitload of activism and he’s there to entertain and inspire everyone…?

    Q&A with Wilson Cruz

    Confining him to the hotel room, while a pleasant thought, would be the bigger waste!

  • Tommy

    What a circus. A circus with an abundance of clowns. In all the years of its miserable existence, “Creating Change” has created no demonstrable change. It is an occasion for these “queer” activists to mewl about their oppression and to whine that the gay movement tends to care about gay issues as opposed to every other problem in the world.

    I had a chance to read through the Creating Change program. I could find no presentation or work session of any practical value. However, I did get a lot of amusement reading through their 5 pages of etiquette rules on dealing with trans activists and “fluids”. Oh, and it was great to know that the “two spirit” people officially bless the conference and welcomes the members of the LGBTIANGC community. That’s what it actually says.

  • CBRad

    @Tommy: True. And the fools like to pretend to themselves and each other it’s as significant as the Meeting at Yalta or something.

  • jeff4justice

    @Steve: Funny how your comment does to me what you accuse me of doing to others. I suppose you;ll also need some “cheese to go with your whine” as you put it.

    Your comment reminds me of people who say “how dare you complain about Obama on marriage or indefinite detention since he’s done so much.”

    Just becuase a person or group does some good things does not mean that the bad or ineffective things they do should be ignored.

    Regarding my activism, click on my name and it takes you to my YouTube page which has countless vids of me working to better things for the LGBT community in the past decade.

    I do not count on the countless mega LGBT groups who have ignored my area to make things better.

Comments are closed.