About 150 queer and allied Portlanders gathered to
stand around and send text messages rally tonight at Tom McCall Waterfront Park, ostensibly to protest the California Supreme Court's decision upholding Proposition 8 (and also - bizarrely but shrewdly - letting the 18,000 same sex marriages already performed there stand as valid).
I'm not sure how much there is to say about what went down. People milled about for a while before Basic Rights Oregon executive director Jeana Frazzini hopped up on a park bench and spoke for a bit, followed by Multnomah County democratic chair KC Hanson and then trans activist Laura Calvo. After several minutes of aimless speechmaking, people marched to Pioneer Square, paying close attention (per the direction of Calvo) to "obey all traffic laws and signs."
The whole thing was sort of organized by a young lesbian couple who, though apparently in the audience for the rally, refused to say a few words to thank people for coming or even wave to the crowd. Weird! Weirder yet, the girls later sent out an email blast to members of the media apologizing for their "poor organizing" (their words, not mine, ahem) of the event, asking that the media reprint a long statement from them about the rally (after not speaking or even introducing yourselves to the crowd?? Yeah, whatevs ladies) and attaching a picture of them smooching (?!).
Definitely weird. BUT! There were some higlights. The best part for me was a) adorable gay youngsters showing their activist side in glittery face paint!, and b) KATU reporter Jeff Jaeger, who is just as delicious and intoxicating as his name would suggest (shh, don't tell my bf).
ALSO! 2008 Portland City Council candidate Ed Garren! Driving by in a blue auto and honking his horn excitedly! This totally made my night:
More photos from the, uh, "protest" after the jump...
Here's the scene just after 6 pm...
Glitter war paint!!
Laura Calvo: trans activist. Angry about the Supreme Court ruling.
The crowd tunes in.
These girls were sooo excited to cheer on the gays. Cheer, ladies, cheer!
The BEST LOOK EVER by strangers toward parading homosexuals.
The mini-parade finished at, where else, Pioneer Square.
Pride is just around the corner, people... dust off those rainbow flags!