Quote: Human Rights Campaign, San Francisco Steering Committee:-
“As we know from this past year’s roller coaster fight over marriage rights, our community needs a powerful voice and leaders who can harness the momentum that is building so that we can all share in the progress that we have long waited for. Listen to members of this year’s Gala Dinner Committee discuss what Power in Progress means to them.”
I know that this fundraiser was set before April of this year – and plans were made prior to the recent historic boost to UAFA (Uniting American Families Act) -However, due to the enormity and the historic significance I have found it odd in the light of the theme for this year that HRC did not find a way to include what follows in the Power for Progress theme – If ever I saw Power in Progress it is here and it is still history in the making. To miss at the very least a mention of this and its significance is not only a slap in the face to the players and courageous victims, but also a significant loss to the issue of immigration equality, whether this is HRC prime issue or not.
What specifically am I speaking about:-
1. Senator Feinstein introduced a Private Bill (#867) for our California bi-national couple – Shirley Tan and Jay Mercado, with California immigration and LGBT activist Melanie Nathan at the helm of multiple organization support and the effective use of the media. This saved Shirley from imminent deportation and she is now able to remain at home with her wife and their twin boys. Now she awaits passage of UAFA with thousands of others, some of whom are exiled from their own Country and led to:-
2. Shirley Tan from Pacifica courageously gave oral testimony in D.C. at the invitation of Senator Leahy to the Senate Judiciary Committee on June 3rd, 2009. She was introduced by CA Congresswoman Jackie Speier who lent incredible support to the efforts. Shirley will also give evidence to State Assembly for a Resolution authored by Rep. Kevin de Leon in August this year.
3. The video Testimony of Ms. Tan has been viewed on You Tube 28,000 + times – This was picked up by thousands of outlets, through Associated Press, Internationally. People Magazine (40 Million readership) Article by Susan Young, New York Times (June 3rd), San Francisco Chronicle, SacBee and Mercury News – all unique Articles; Local and national network prime time news Cable Chanels – Filippino Mainstream news- Chagmion Antoine Interview on LOGO.
4. There are at least 36,000 bi-national couples impacted by the progress of this legislation.
5. In the light of last years controversy I sense this may reflect somewhat on the “all rich white male” critique applied to that boycott!
6. Remember raising money is ALL in the stories!
I think this is an issue that HRC must ackowledge in some way at the gala.
If anyone from HRC reads this they may contact Melanie Nathan at