Does the HRC Speak for You?

Jun 11, 2010 · 1985 views

Premium Content

You need to be a Feast of Fun Plus+ member to access this.
Join now or Log in – it's easy!

Yesterday on my blog and facebook, I posed the question “What has the HRC done for you lately?” I got a veritable cornucopia of responses. You see, apparently the Human Rights Campaign has taken to […]


  1. metta says:

    I have been a small contributor to the HRC for over 10 years and plan on continuing to do so. It does not offend me that they have events for fundraising (some of them expensive) on a regular basis nor does it bother me that they have members that donate generously. The white house and many of out politiicans listen to the HRC and we need to work towards equality on every level possible. Many of the rights we need, unless the supreme court steps in, we really do need their support. And I don’t want to just depend on the supreme court to do the right thing.

    Whether it is necessary to pay their executives such high incomes or how well the money is spent, I do wonder, but I also wonder how other similar sized lobby groups get paid. They are involved in politics, and politics is extrememly expensive. I have not seen anything that shows that they have done anything unethical or corrupt. Just people complaining about them encouraging weatlhy to give money or asking for donations from people on a regular basis, something that many non-profits do to pay the bills.

    The HRC is just one of many GLBT organizations that I support.

    • Thanks for the input. I guess my frustration is that other organizations actually have results from a 1/4 of the money the HRC has. The HRC these days seems too corporatist and all too willing to step aside when the politicians say “now is not the time.”

      As one of my friends on Facebook mentioned, the HRC criticized the National Equality March up until a few weeks before when they realized they could turn a quick buck.

  2. Bill says:

    Actually, it has been awhile since I have heard of H R C taking a public stand on any major (or minor) issues. I’ve always supported locally or in my favorite beach town Rehoboth Beach DE. I do like the = sticker

  3. Short answer: No, they don’t (and I like the sticker, too).

    Long answer: If they just campaigned on gay/human rights issues, I might give them a second look. However, they tend to do two things that are contrary to that:

    1. Speak on non-GLBTQ issues. I suppose you could argue just about anything (and any position, no pun intended) is a GLBTQ issue. Seriously though, stick to your intended cause.

    2. Their unerring, unwavering, unmitigated support for the Democratic party. I’ll spare the diatribe here unless queried, but they’re really just another cheerleading group for the Democrats. Giving this kind of support to any party (when you’re supposed to be a niche movement for a specific political purpose and not a political party) is dangerous to a cause.

  4. I’m with you Ryan. I’ve thought the same thing for a long time. I donate to other gay rights groups, mostly local.

  5. Honestly, it would be great if EVERY damn message from the HRC didn’t come with a request for a donation. Christ, even their iPhone app prompted me to donate for the privilege of seeing a buying guide from gay-friendly businesses. This wouldn’t be so tasteless if Solmonese wasn’t making over $300k a year, while laying off staff who make $25k due to them “struggling.”

  6. HRC gets social media and they do a ton of good things, like the “Best Places to Work” list they put out every year:

    That has a profound impact on the workplace environments for millions of gay people in the country. Not all HRC happenings are celebrity oriented or even driven by Joe.

    I don’t always agree about they way they do things, but it’s nice to know there is a diversity of approaches and organizations, all fighting for equality.

    HRC Chicago works with our podcast in creative ways to get their message out there, and to get our program out there to new people. The guys in Chicago get us. They have a twitter account. You can’t say that about so many groups, sadly some of them are behind the times.

  7. I’m not a fan of lobbying, but someone does have to do it. That’s primarily what HRC does. I’m not a huge fan and I don’t think they’re perfect, but I don’t think they’re the devil incarnate like some folks do.

    They do create coalitions with other groups too. This is something that needs to be done. We can’t just focus on LGBTQ issues or we’ll never get anywhere.

    But to answer your question directly, no the HRC does not speak for me. Nor do I assume everything associated with the word “gay” has something to do with me personally. I mean, Lady Gaga doesn’t speak for me, but some gays cry blasphemy when I say she sucks. (I realize this sounds like a strange comparison, but I find diva worship strange as they’re largely useless to the gay community and make billions off of it.)

    I think it’s crappy to take out your frustrations with the organization on some volunteer with a clipboard though. At least they were doing some actual footwork.

  8. Eric says:

    I used to live in a DC and was amazed at how non-diverse their staff was. Not only that but I when I saw them out they were aggressive and and overtly racist towards the only staff member of color in the group. After seeing that I vowed never to support them or their activities. I give to NGLTF and to local youth organizations. Booo to HRC.

  9. jpw says:

    The HRC is completely self-serving, and has been for over a decade.

    When the mayor of New Paltz, NY announced in 2004 that he would start performing same-sex marriages, the local gay rights group contacted the HRC for support. Not only did the HRC refuse, but more-or-less forbade them because it, “was Too Soon and make the movement look bad.”

    In the 1998 NY State senate race, the HRC backed the _Republican_ candidate and incumbent, Alfonse D’Amato. Now, I know that most of you are getting indignant about the HRC supporting a Republican, but that’s not the worst of it. D’Amato is and always has been thoroughly and completely corrupt. I mostly grew up on Long Island, and my mother was teaching me to say, “Alfonse D’Amato is a crook,” when I was 6 years old.

    When the HRC called my other half and I in 1999 for donations, I was shouting into the phone, “…and when the Fundies take over, I’ll be you’ll be urging us to be quiet and politely march to the concentration camps…”

    They are nothing but self-serving White A-List-Gays who want to leach money off of the few of us willing to actually stop partying for 10 minutes to stand up for ourselves with our wallets, while giving us absofargingloutly nothing in return.

    Remember, everyone, who did things for you:

    * Drag Queens of Color finally fought back in 1969 at Stonewall, jumpstarting what we think of now as the Gay Rights movement;
    * ACT-UP and Queer Nation protested loudly and often, forcing the US govt. and healthcare establishment to stop treating HIV as, “The Gay Plague,” and actually _Do_Something_ to fight the disease;
    * Before the HRC’s self-aggrandizing Equals-Sign stickers, we plastered Rainbow Flag and Pink Triangle stickers, the latter to rub haters’ noses in the fact that we were rounded up and gassed by the Nazis, too (and then, after the liberation of the camps, we were rearrested and imprisoned, merely for being gay);
    * The biggest organization rescuing gay teens from the streets of NYC and San Francisco is the Hetrick-Martin Institute (NYC also has Sylvia’s Place);

    Remember your history, people.

Leave a Reply

Login or Register

Facebook Conversations