Saturday, June 25, 2016

SF Pride Hides Parade Lineup Info?

Since 2013, I've objected to SF Pride deciding the lineup of contingent for the parade up Market Street with nary a ray of sunshine and transparency and that year, I pointed out 23 politicians had early placing in the lineup and how law enforcement were front-ended. No hours-long waiting around for electeds and cops.

Last year, I again kvetched about SF Pride's opaque process on this matter and how the police and politicians were again up front and were joined by Airbnb and Apple, enjoying early spots in the parade.

This year, SF Pride has not shared the lineup on their web site. Why open yourselves to community scrutiny before the June 26 parade, right? Keep the info off-line and don't expect any hassle about who goes first or last till after the whole shebang is over, seems to be the attitude at SF Pride.

Where is the lineup info and why can't SF Pride simple post it online for all to see?

I'll be skipping the profiteering parade and the all the police and politicians and corporations, ok, and the ordinary and fabulous queer folks and groups who aren't part of the parade's problems. No need for me to associate in any way with the commercialization and co-opting of what used to be a liberating experience.

For me, Queer Pride has nothing to do with SF Pride and those who exploit it for commercial and political gains.
Frameline40: 'Pushing Dead' & 'Jonathan' = Must-Sees

It's the final days for Frameline40 and I'm catching two movies this weekend at the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival.

The enthusiastic audience response to the two screenings of the San Francisco set gentrification drama "Pushing Dead," starring local activist and acting icon Danny Glover, is getting a third showing. It plays tonight at the Victoria Theater at 9:15 pm and I've heard only positive buzz about this film.

After watching the trailer for "Jonathan" from Germany, reveling in its camerawork and big compositions, I put it on my must-see list. A few deets from the program:

"Gorgeous cinematography, a bucolic German setting, and director Piotr Lewandowski’s lyrical storytelling style make 'Jonathan' a uniquely sumptuous visual experience—and illuminate a tale about family, romantic love, and bittersweet regret."

Catch it on Sunday at 4 pm at the Castro Theater. More info on these and all events - tix, times, film synopses - at Frameline40, click here and get to the festival this weekend!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Complete List of 178 Civilians Killed by SFPD since 1939 

Back in April of 2014, I was the first public citizen and blogger to request, obtain and share on the web, the full list of all civilians killed in officer-involved-shootings by members of the San Francisco police force. The list of names totaled 168.

Since then, there have been ten additional fatal encounters between a civilian and an SFPD officer and the names of those individuals have been added to this list, bringing it up to 178.

Unlike two-years ago, the police department refused to release the race of the dead persons, citing state privacy codes. The full SFPD letter and page with the new names is share here. This is, as far as I know, the most accurate list of it's kind. Lemme know if any fatalities have been omitted.

1939: One: Castro, Carlos (White male)
1940: One: O’Toole, John (White male)
1941: Three: Church, Richard (White male), Brown, Joseph (White male), Imperiale, John (White male)
1942: Two: Silvestri, Joseph (White male), Walker, Harvey (White male)
1943: Four: Weber, Howard B. (White male), Warner, Glenn K. (White male), Dallas, William L. (White male), Pruszynski, Valdimir (White male)
1944: Four: Artega, Julio (White male), Anderson, Robert (White male), Taylor, Paul (White male), Adams, James (White male)
1945: Six: Buchanan, Willie (White male), Melendez, Francisco (White male), Brown, Paul Jr. (White male), Murphy, James (White male), Hayward, Bert (Unknown race), Pellan, William (Unknown race)
1946: Three: Copeland, John T. (White male), Ping, Lou (Oriental male),  Armelin, Eustice (Filipino male)
1947: Three: Knego, Frank (White male), Dabandan, Apolonio (White male), Ella, Edison Griffith (White male)
1948: Zero
1949: Three: Pixley, Ernest (White male), Leonard, Frank (White male), Chene, Dennis L. (White male),
1950: Two: Lassen, Dwaine (White male), Stanek, Robert (White male)
1951: One: Moss, Francis H. (White male)
1952: One: Lewis, Harper (White male)
1953: Three: Martinez, John (White male), Bishop, James L. (White male), Nichols, Jack (White male)
1954: One: Aladrid, Ernest P. (White male)
1955: Two: Ewen, Paul D. (White male), Smith, Albert (White male)
1956: Zero
1957: Zero
1958: Zero
1960: Two: Padron, Liborio (Filipino male), Bruce, Paul (White male), Cronin, Joseph (White male)
1961: Two: Porter, Lester (White male), Barajas, Joaquin (White male)
1962: One: Medina, Ernest Isaels (White male)
1963: Zero
1964: Zero
1965: Four:  Besk, Knute A. (White male), Vogel, Joseph Adam (White male), Cortez, Govea (White male), Camargo, John A. (White male)
1966: Two: Johnson, Mathew (Black male), Klebanew, Richard (White male)
1967: Zero
1968: One: Rains, James A. (White male)
1969: Six: Pollard, William H. (White male), Linthcome, Al (Black male),
Ross, Lannie (Black male), Ogden, Larry L. (White male), Brumfield, Charles (Black male), Martin, David O. (White male)
1970: Five: Clancy, Gerald M. (White male), Beavers, Miles T. (Black male) Morton, Charles (Black male), Prince, Van Allen (Black male), Williams, Alfado (Black male)
1971: Four: Torres, Christopher (White male), Legault, Ronald (White male), Faletoso, Maya (Spanish male), Johnson, Clarence (Black male)
1972: Three: Deer, Earl (Black male), Scarborough, Earl (Black male), Fowler, Raymond (White male)
1973: Three: Pratt, Josiah (Black male), Alexander, Dennis (Black male), Lenton, Albert (Black male)
1974: Four: Bacy, Wilber (Black male), Mueller, Herbert (White male), Hughes, Andre (Black male), Quinteno, Ivan Peter (White male)
1975: Zero
1976: Zero
1977: One:  Hill, Lloyd H. (Black male), Wells, Coleman A. (Black male), Riegel, Robert (White male)
1978: Zero:
1979: Two: Hughes, Perry (Black male), Sorrel, Roger (White male)
1980: Four: Grillo, Patrick (White male); Garrett, Vernell J. (Black male); Mata, George (White male); Hill, Raymond (White male)
1981: Two: David, Wayne M. (White male); Thomas, David J. (Black male)
1982: Two: Contawe, Ricardo (Asian male); Middleton, Victoria (White female)
1983: Two: Payne, Demetrius (Black male); Truong, Vo Tuoc (Asian male)
1984: One: Hoard, Jackie (Black female)
1985: One: Farrow, Warren (Black male)
1986: Three: Lumpkin, Larry (Black male); Flores, Charles (White male); Yip, Nesly (Asian male)
1987: Zero
1988: Four: Groshe, Tony (Other race male); Dixon, Ronald (White male); Bell, Charles (Black male); Barnett, Abraham (Black male)
1989: Three: Cafaro, Joseph (While male); Mason, Martin (White male); Nasalgay, Rene B. (White male)
1990: Seven: Bouyer, Allen (White male); Singh, Narinder (Other race male); Montes, Manuel (White male); Villanueva, Raymond (Asian male); DOE, John (Other race male); Quaid, Henry (White male); Wadsworth, Norman (Black male)
1991: Two: Galen, William (White male); Dixon, Edward (Black male)
1992: Three: Gardner, Scott (White male); Griffin, Glend (Black male); Washington, Damon (Black male)
1993: Three: Williams, Frank (Black male); Houston, Albert (Black male); Flores, Juan (Asian male)
1994: Three: Huang, Sai Ting (Asian male); Moore, Sidney W. (Black male); Boutwell, Victor (White male)
1995: Three: Boss, David (Black male); Hankston, William (Black male); Sheenan, Edwin (Black male)
1996: One: Thibeaus, Lernest (Black male)
1997: Two: Truong, Hue (Other race male); Solano, Silvano (Hispanic male)
1998: Two: Madrid, Jessie (White male); Smart, John M. (White male)
1999: Two: Nguyen, Phuc (Asian male); White, Bufford (Black male)
2000: Zero
2001: Two: Stelley, Idris (Black male); Smith, Randy (White male)
2002: Five: Hooper, Gregory (Black male); Tims, Richard (Black male); Ruffin, Robert (Black male); Tan, Jerry (Asian male); Akbar, Jihad (Black male)
2003: One: Moll, Michael (White male)
2004: Four: Dean, Paul (Other race male); Boyd, Cammerin (Black male); Angulo, Carlos (Hispanic male); Rugley, Gustavo J. (Black male)
2005: Zero
2006: Four: Harrington, Michael (White male); Ruff, Marlon (Black male); Breed, Charles (Black male); Eklund, Karen (White female)
2007: Two: Vargas, Mario Javier (White male); Robinson, Rene (Black male)
2008: One: Cole, Leonard (White male)
2009: One: Li, Xiyu (Asian male)
2010: Three: Bui, Vinh (Asian male); Lee, Michael (Other race male); Smith, Edward (White male)
2011: Six: Smith, Joshua (White male); Hill, Charles (White male) (BART police department officer involved shooting); Sicat, Roselyndo (Asian male); Woo, Peter (Asian male); Harding, Kenneth (Black male); Young, Steven (White male)
2012: Two: Pralourng, Pralith (Asian male); Hughes, Dennis (White male)
2013: One: Wilkerson, Dale (White male)
2014: Three: Nieto, Alejandro (Hispanic male); Sandoval-Contreras, Giovany; Evans, Oshaine
2015: Hoffman, Matthew; Perez-Lopez, Emilcar; Brown, Alice; Benitez, Herbert; Lopez, Javier; Woods, Mario
2016: Gongora, Luis; Nelson, Jessica 

Thursday, June 23, 2016

#Orlando Memorial Planned for SF's Harvey Milk Plaza

This is news to me. From the Bay Area Reporter today:

"Gay District 9 Supervisor David Campos, who represents the Mission, is working to erect a memorial to the Pulse shooting victims at Harvey Milk Plaza in the Castro. On Monday, gay Supervisor Scott Wiener, who represents the Castro, told the B.A.R. that he envisions a community process for any memorial, but that he and others are supportive of it."

In keeping with Campos' terrible track record of not engaging his district and the larger queer Latino and Anglo communities via social media about his latest proposals, there is no info on this memorial idea via his Facebook or Twitter accounts.

Nice of the two rival gay supervisors to agree amongst themselves about a potential plaque or other iconic way of remembering the Orlando victims on City property, but it's obnoxious of them not to inform the LGBT and Latino communities.

The blood is barely dry and cleaned up in Orlando and already San Francisco politicians are jockeying for positions to best exploit the tragedy.

Actually, from the day this massacre unfolded, June 12, and with Wiener staging a political rally at Castro and Market Streets with electeds who've endorsed him in his tight race for state senate, exploitation by electeds has been part of the mix of reactions.

How to process the BAR's news? First, if there is to be such a memorial on public land, I'd like a discussion if it should be in the Mission or the Castro, or even one in each district.

Second, you know what comes next, we need to make sure control of the rainbow flag is an integral part of the community process. There cannot be a debate about an Orlando memorial at Milk Plaza without including the flagpole and the entire plaza's environment.

Let the public discussion begin!
Colorful BAMPFA Atrium & Bach-Mania

Have a gander at the newly installed colorful clumps of very movable soft furniture in the atrium you pass at the new BAMPFA home, on your way into the Barbro Osher Theater. Cal students draped themselves over the chunky pieces, then snapped images of themselves.

That space needs to be occupied by folks and not just an empty area with no reason to linger, chat and engage with the new venue in creative ways. Glad to see the museum administrators adapting the venue to be as inviting as possible.

The photo of the students was taken few weeks ago, when I finally caught up with Jean-Marie Straub and Danièle Huillet's most-accessible film, "The Chronicle of Anna Magdalena Bach," at the Berkeley Art Museum/Pacific Film Archive. We were treated to a pristine imported 35mm print from a cinematheque in Europe.

A fictional diary of Johann Sebastian Bach's second wife, this 1968 film featured excerpts from his music performed at locations where it was first heard and I found the cinematic austerity pleasing to my eyes and ears.

Since seeing it, I've pretty much listened only to Bach's enormous body of music and find it difficult to listen to any other music. I'm sure this Bach-mania will pass but until it does, my queer ears will enjoy his partitas and sonatas and concerti and choral works and preludes and cantatas and . . . all the rest of his mighty compositions!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Sup Cohen Drops 'A-hole' Bomb on #OpenGov over Calendars

The biggest foe of sunshine at San Francisco's City Hall is Board of Supervisor President London Breed, who has muddied the waters when I requested her work calendar. She's claimed many dumb excuses for withholding it and was the only Supervisor to vote against Sup. John Avalos's 2015 legislation mandating the Supes keep and release calendars.

Unfortunately, Avalos didn't call for posting the calendars online so the burden in on the public to request them. I filed many requests with the Supes and shared their calendars on my site.

At the June 9 meeting of the Rules Committee, Breed's BFF, Sup. Malia Cohen, questioned Sunshine Ordinance Task Force member Eric Eldon about personalities of the public seeping into the process. Cohen completely ignores her personality and that of some of her colleagues when requests are made for their public records.

She drops the a-hole bomb targeting me and #OpenGov, as you hear in the video.

Eldon cites my advocacy as an example of how at least one member of the general public uses the SOTF to push forward greater transparency for all citizens, whether the politicians or reporters like me or my tactics.

My only dealings with Eldon have been at SOTF hearings and, of course, I am thankful he understands where I'm coming from and is also backing my idea that City Hall needs to post elected officials' calendars on one site every month. 

Interesting how Cohen starts off talking about the lack of "decorum" and "professionalism" on the SOTF then blurts out an epithet. Entitlement does strange things to these politicos.

Let the sunshine reign supreme!

Sunday, June 19, 2016

SF Mayor: No Decree Lowering Flags for Orlando LGBT Latinos

In the grand scheme of things, a simple flag lowering ain't much but it is a vital way of visually expressing a community's pain and brings about healing of the collective psyche.

There apparently was no proclamation from San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee ordering that all flags on municipal property fly at half-mast out of sympathy and solidarity with the dead or maimed 100-plus queers, straights and a lot of Latinos.

Why the omission of an order to bring flags down in San Francisco, if for no other reason than in cooperation with President Barack Obama's proclamation to fly flags on federal government land and buildings at half-mast?

He did however, and appropriately so, declare official City mourning with the lowering of flags after the Wisconsin Sikh Temple shooting of 2012 and the passing of Nelson Mandela in 2013.

I emailed a whole lotta folks in various mayoral advisory positions asking why he forgot to issue a decree lowering flags on _our_ public property for a few days over the Orlando tragedy, and didn't receive a response.

You can read Mayor Lee's releases and proclamations here.

Berkeley Rep Flies Rainbow Flag for #Orlando & Pride

Last night, our favorite regional theater company, the Berkeley Rep, was flying the LGBT Pride Flag on their facade facing Addison Street. It was a sight quite pleasing to my queer eye and I was moved by the mix of the company's flags and the rainbow colors.

Folks in the box office informed me the Pride flag flew in honor of the 100-plus dead and wounded in Orlando, and for Gay Pride Month. Feeding two birds with one seed, as I like to say.

Just the uplift I needed at the end of very emotionally and politically wrought week.

I was in Berkeley to see my first play by Athol Fugard, "Master Harold . . . and the boys" at the Aurora Theater also on Addison Street. They displayed a chalk version of the rainbow flag in their entrance way.

This modern classic drama was well-acted, enthralled the audience who cheered the actors and production with a standing ovation at the end and gave me the theatrical catharsis I was looking for and needed this weekend.

Life is so much better thanks to the performing arts, those who create it and the audiences that enjoy live theater.

Thanks, my friends at Berkeley Rep and Aurora Theater, for all that you do on your stages and in the communities in which you live.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Frameline40: Queer Film - Now More Than Ever

The LGBT Cannes is how many refer to the San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival and Frameline40 kicked off last night at the Castro Theater, and now more than ever, we need to see ourselves and our lives, and as we were reminded this week in Orlando, our deaths appropriately and widely represented on the big and little screens.

A number of films are of keen interest and should please my queer eye and bent ear.

Top of my must-see list is Andre Techine's latest work from France, "Being 17," playing June 21 at 7 pm at the Castro. He made one of my favorite queer films of the 1990s, "Wild Reeds," and he always makes intelligent narratives with terrific camerawork.

"Being 17" is described as a hormonal battle between two late-adolescent boys that promises an emotional reckoning for both of them.

Next up is the San Francisco-set tale "Pushing Dead" about a network of diverse folks struggling to stay alive and in the City, centered on an HIV positive gay man. In the cast is hometown actor and progressive activist Danny Glover, one more reason to catch this at the festival. Might we see Glover in the Castro on June 18 when the film screens at 6:30 pm?

I missed "The Joneses" when it played to packed houses and appreciative audiences at the recent San Francisco International Film Festival, and heard only positive buzz about it.

This documentary examines a trailer park in the Bible Belt of Mississippi and the owner, a trans woman, and her adult sons and other colorful people who make the park their home, struggling to get by and enjoy life. It unspools at the Roxie on June 18 at 1:30 pm.

Other docs on my list are more historical including "Flashback 1977: Frameline's Founding Year," an omnibus program of three shorts and Arthur J. Bressan, Jr.'s groundbreaking feature "Gay USA," all from that important year. Catch it on June 19 at 6:15 pm at the Roxie.

And then there's Marlon T. Riggs' revolutionary black queer representational in all its beauty and pain doc "Tongues Untied" from 1989, showcasing a cross-section of African-Americans in short tales, which was awarded the Best Documentary Prize at the Berlinale. It plays June 23 at 1:30 pm at the Castro.

What are you planning to see at Frameline40? More info on all programs, showtimes and ticket purchasing details, click here.
NYT Buried 1980 NYC Gay Bar Massacre on Page B1

The world's most influential newspaper, the New York Times, for decades sowed hatred of and significantly contributed to the demonization and devaluation of LGBT lives, damage that extends to today despite radical pro-gay changes at the Gray Lady.

Publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr's metro desk on June 16 ran a piece by gay reporter David W. Dunlap about the Manhattan gay Ramrod Bar massacre on November 19, 1980, that left two dead and six folks wounded. The headline yesterday was "New York's Own Gay Massacre, Now Barely Recalled."

Well, it was barely covered by the Times so it's not surprising so few remember or are aware of this mass shooting.

Dunlap quoted gay media observer and write Edward M. Allwood, author of "Straight News: Gays, Lesbians and the News Media," and cited a passage from his book detailing the murder Greenwich Village murder scene. No mention made by Dunlap regarding the lousy Times coverage back then, as Allwood wrote. Here's what Dunlap overlooked from "Straight News":

"When copies of the New York Times arrived at newsstands at dawn, the only mention of the shooting was on the bottom of page one, where a single-column box directed readers to page B1.

"In many newspapers, mass murder would merit a banner headline.

"The Times, however, gave the story secondary priority and put the article by veteran crime reporter Josh Barbanel on the front of its local news section.

"'No one called up eighty-five editors and had a meeting about how the story was handled," Barbanel recalled. 'The thing happened late in the evening. The deaths didn't happen all at once. It wasn't a finished polished story that happened at five o'clock at night. These are factors that go into the eight million decisions that are made in the course of night at a newspaper. It was put on page B-one, which is the second most prominent place in a newspaper.'"

The single mention of the Times by Dunlap yesterday was a reference to their story about eight months after the killings, on page A20, titled “Rare Cancer Seen in 41 Homosexuals."

Good of the Times to remind and educate readers about the Ramrod gay bar massacre, but the paper needs to be spanked for omitting their shameful under-playing of the 1980 tragedy. Yes, the Times could always do better in acknowledging its woeful history. I think Dunlap - out gay longer than anyone at the paper - is doing a better job than most in covering our lives now.