Organizers hope for big turnout at Day of Decision Rally; police don't foresee problems

Posted on 26 May 2009 at 2:17pm

I just got off the phone with Blake Wilkinson of Queer Liberaction, the group planning tonight’s Dallas Day of Decision Rally.
Wilkinson said he has no idea how many people to expect for the rally but added that he’s hoping for as many as possible.
“I would be stunned if it was less than 50. The response has been very good in the last few days that we’ve been publicizing this,” he said. “The response from the media has been decent, and the last thing we want is for a handful of us out on the corner holding signs. What kind of message does that send? It sends a message that gays and lesbians in Dallas don’t really care about their rights being taken away from them.”
The rally will begin at 7 p.m. at the Legacy of Love Monument at the Oak Lawn Triangle, before proceeding to the patio of Throckmorton Mining Co. at about 7:30 or 7:45, Wilkinson said. Those scheduled to address the crowd through a megaphone from the TMC patio include Cece Cox, Chastity Kirven, Rick Vanderslice, Daniel Cates and Charles Curtis, Wilkinson said. Queer Liberaction will hold a final planning meeting in advance of the rally at 5:30 p.m. at Buli Café, 3908 Cedar Springs Road.
“Basically the motivation for today is to rally our troops and move forward and not be blindsided like we were in California,” Wilkinson said. “Get out in the streets, get organized, get active and move forward. The conservative right and the anti-gay forces here in Texas sure aren’t going to be taking a break, and neither should we.”
I also spoke earlier today with Laura Martin, LGBT community liaison officer for the Dallas Police Department. Martin said DPD also is unsure how many people to expect, but she said she doesn’t foresee any major problems.
Martin said people attending the rally should avoid blocking traffic, engaging counterprotesters, and throwing things into the street or toward police officers.
“We know that the community is angry about the decision, but you have to have a little bit of sense when you’re protesting, unless you’re looking for an opportunity to go to jail,” Martin said.

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