Left Behinds

The anti-andrewsullivan.com. Or, the Robin Hood (Maid Marian?) of bright pink Blogger blogs.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

ACT UP at 20

Richard Kim and Esther Kaplan wrote a great ode to ACT UP in this week's Nation.

Along the way, ACT UP borrowed strategies from other radical movements: antinuke protesters for techniques on civil disobedience, antiapartheid campaigners for bringing political funerals to the streets. Many of its tactics--videotaping demonstrations as protection against police brutality, coordinated but autonomous affinity group actions--have become standard fare in the global justice movement, as has ACT UP's deeply democratic tradition.

ACT UP is now a shadow of its former self, but its alums have gone on to found Health Gap, a driving force for global treatment access; the Treatment Action Group, which continues to push the AIDS research agenda; and Housing Works, which has won housing for thousands of New York City's HIV-­positive homeless. And true to form, the organization will mark its twentieth anniversary with a march on Wall Street March 29 to demand single-payer healthcare for all.

Today, anyone who gains access to an experimental drug before it's approved, or takes a life-saving medicine that was fast-tracked through the FDA--indeed, anyone engaged in the struggle for healthcare--is indebted to ACT UP's audacity and vision.

On Monday, there was a good show on OUT FM about ACT UP. The interviews with Tim Murphy, Ann Northrop, and Mackenzie from YES were especially interesting.

And ACT Up and the Queer Justice League are having a huge action March 29th on Wall St. to demand universal health care. I'll be there.


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