in San Francisco & Hollywood
Golden Gate Group Changes Its Name to Avoid Association
L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center Cancels Group's Anti-HIV Talks
Compiled By GayToday
The dissidents rely, they say, on what they call “statements of support” from Nobel prize-winning chemist Dr. Kary Mullis, protease inhibitor designer Dr. David Rasnick, and UC-Berkeley professor Dr. Peter Duesberg. Both Drs. Rasnick and Duesberg accepted an invitation last week to sit on a panel in South Africa to help shape the medical debate in that country. They reportedly teach that AIDS is essentially caused in developing countries by malnutrition and poor hygiene.
GayToday has received reports indicating that feelings in the U.S. on the anti-HIV issue are running high among the West Coast's activists and that long-time supporters of the HIV theory have sometimes been treated publicly as objects of scorn. Jeff Getty, the President of Survive AIDS, calls the anti-HIV opponents “twisted, violent fanatics.”
San Francisco's Bay Area Reporter dismisses the anti-HIV activists as “an unaffiliated collective of medical marijuana purveyors, animal rights activists, and AIDS conspiracy theorists who took up the name ACT UP/San Francisco after the original group of that name dissolved in 1994.”
ACT UP/San Francisco prides itself today, however, as the nation's largest ACT UP group. A founding member of the original ACT UP group in New York City (who asked to remain anonymous) told GayToday that the venerable organization still headquartered in Manhattan is only a former shell of itself and that its membership has dwindled significantly.
Rod Knoll of ACT UP/Hollywood, reports that his group's attempts at negotiations with the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center have been fruitless.
ACT UP/Hollywood's first full-scale protest at the Center took place on February 28 and included twelve supporters with signs and bullhorns marching for an hour in front of the Village complex. The group's messages were clearly audible to large crowds in the courtyard who were attending an evening workshop by author Caroline Myss.
At one point, a few gay men who were attending a 'No on Knight' rally inside the Village made some comments in support of ACT UP/Hollywood's “rights to meet” and were promptly, the dissidents said, threatened with arrest by both a Center official and an off-duty policeman if they were to fail to leave the premises.
ACT UP/Hollywood has begun broadcasting a new weekly half-hour TV challenge to HIV/AIDS theories, on West Hollywood cable access channel 36. AIDS is a Lie! airs thrice weekly: Tuesdays 6:30pm, Thursdays 11pm and Fridays 7am.