The View From Your Protest: San Francisco


A reader writes:

I attended the pro-gay marriage protest in San Francisco this morning, and I have never seen a protest that badly organized in all my years attending badly organized protests in San Francisco. There were lots of people there, for sure, and the organizers should be commended for getting the word out.  But there was no stage, so no one could see the people who came to rally us.

No one could hear what the speakers had to say because the audio equipment looked like it must have been picked up at the flea market right before the event. No organizers were to be seen anywhere, soliciting money for the cause or getting people's contact information. Thousands of people were there, for sure, but because no one was there to tell people what to do, and because no one could hear the speakers, people were wandering in circles, unsure what good they were doing or why they were there in the first place. This is San Francisco, a boozy city where waking up for a protest at 10:30 in the morning on a Saturday is quite the commitment, and no one was there to take advantage of all these people's good will. I also saw no fewer than four signs comparing Prop 8 to the Holocaust (not helpful, and sure to rally anti-gay marriage supporters), and there were no organizers there asking them to carry different signs.

With these organizing skills, it is a small wonder we lost this election. Those in charge of this cause claim that they've learned their lesson -- that from now on, they will know the importance of grassroots organizing. Today did not convince me that anyone has learned anything.

It might just be time for some new leadership.