Back of the Book — November 26, 2022

It's Monday morning, December 5, 2022, 09:20, and I've updated this Web page with Pickles of the North's piece about the Artemis I project. This Web page is almost finished. The original top of this page follows the arrow. We're hoping that the drama and stress of last week's broadcast isn't repeated this week. By which we mean that we're hoping that the stream doesn't crash and thus crash the archive. We're also hoping that this radio program goes over the air. That having been said, we talked about the below topics, including the one from 42 years ago that R. Paul was around for. So another guy with guns shows up and starts shooting LGBT+∞ people in a bar, in a week that saw more than one mass shooting. We are hopeful that the Respect for Marriage Act will indeed pass, and survive any attacks, legal and political. I plan to update this Web page, so check back for the updates.

You can now listen to this program on the official WBAI Archive.

Did you know that I've got a brief synopsis of some of the WBAI LSB meetings? Well, I do, and I've recently updated some of that.

I have also posted a whole lot of the minutes of the Pacifica National Finance Committee on this Web site. I'm a member of that committee because I'm the WBAI LSB Treasurer.

The WBAI LSB will meet in executive session on December 7, 2022. The next regular LSB meeting will be held on Wednesday December 14, 2022, at 7:00 PM on ZOOM, even though ZOOM compromises privacy and security. This meeting will be held as a teleconference meeting, as the 40 previous public meetings were because of the pandemic.

The WBAI LSB met on Wednesday, November 9, 2022. The LSB passed a motion that listeners can contact the LSB; I'm not sure how that's going to work out. And Management was told to set up a phone number to call the LSB; I don't think that's going to happen. The LSB was also presented with an impossibly complicated motion, which may be out of order. I got it postponed till we can find out if it's even in order. People just throw in every bit of language they can think of sometimes and call it a motion. And once again certain LSB members showed that they are hardly familiar with WBAI at all. They should know more about this radio station than just what's on the air.

Before the November 9, meeting I had put out a written Treasurer's Report for all to read.

Some years ago the WBAI LSB voted to hold its regular meetings on the second Wednesday of every month, subject to change by the LSB, so we have the following schedule:

These meetings are set to begin at 7:00 PM.

WBAI has a program schedule up on its Web site. The site has gotten many of the individual program pages together to provide links and such, so check it out.

Here is WBAI's current Internet stream. We can no longer tell if the stream is working without testing every possible stream. Good luck.

WBAI is archiving the programs! WBAI has permanently switched to yet another new archive Web page! This one is more baffling than the previous one. For some time I was unable to post archive blurbs, then I could, and then I couldn't again. You can take a look at it and see if I've been able to post anything on it lately. There are still some limitations, but I am assured that I can plug in the archive blurbs that were lost in the latest upgrade.

This is a link to the latest version of the official WBAI archive. The archiving software appears to have been at least partially fixed. To get to the archive of this program you can use the usual method: you'll have to click on the drop-down menu, which says Display, and find Back of the Book on that menu. We're pretty early in the list, so it shouldn't be too difficult. Once you find the program name click GO and you'll see only this Back of the Book program. Management has fixed some problems that we'd been having with the archives.

For programs before March 23, 2019, we're all out of luck. The changes that took place once WBAI Management took control of the WBAI archives seems to have wiped out all access to anything before that date in March. You'll have to click on the same drop-down menu as above, which says Display, and find Specify Date, it's the second choice from the top. You are then given a little pop-up calendar and you can choose the date of the program there. Then click GO and you'll see a list of programs that aired on that date. For those previous programs you can get the audio, but nothing else, since I can't post anything to those pages anymore. Yeah, it looks like they'll have some alternating program's name prominently there, but if you have the right date it'll be our program. Good luck.

Since the General Manager has banned Sidney Smith from WBAI he's not alternating with us on the air. As of November 2020, Back of the Book airs weekly.

Bring Back Uncle Sidney!

Our friend, fellow WBAI producer and Saddle Pal Uncle Sidney Smith has been banned from WBAI by General Manager Berthold Reimers. The General Manager will not say why. He won't even tell Sidney why he's banned! This is grossly unfair to Sidney and constitutes abuse of Staff. Why did Berthold ban Sidney?

crosshairs_on_gay_flag (5K)
It's Not A New Crime

Club Q in Colorado springs, CO was attacked by one Anderson Lee Aldrich, 22 who showed up at the door of the nightclub shooting last Saturday night. He killed five people and wounded at least 25 more. He started shooting with an AR-15 type rifle and, luckily, there was a guy named Richard M. Fierro there, he's a veteran. Mr. Fierro said he was at a table in Club Q with his wife, daughter and friends on Saturday, watching a drag show, when the shooting started. He charged toward the shooter and knocked him down. Apparently the shooter was pretty big. Fierro said, I don't know exactly what I did, I just went into combat mode. I just know I have to kill this guy before he kills us. He didn't kill Aldrich but he disarmed him and beat the crap out of him. Aldrich then pulled a pistol on Fierro and they fought over that gun. Meanwhile Fierro told one of the drag queens who'd also come over to attack the shooter to kick him in the head, which the drag queen did. Fierro's wife and daughter were still recovering from injuries. The attack occurred on the eve of Transgender Day of Remembrance. Aldrich had been arrested last year after threatening his mother with a homemade bomb. He was charged with felony kidnapping and menacing in that case, but his mother refused to press charges and all charges were dropped. So Aldrich was not disarmed by the state's red flag law and he was able to have those weapons.

Besides the guns Aldrich also had on body armor. Fierro grabbed him by a handle on the back of that armor and pulled him down to stop further murders. Aldrich is being charged with five counts of murder and five charges related to committing a hate crime.

Aldrich's father, who is a porn actor, said that his reaction was initially concern that his son might be gay. After being told that his son had murdered five people he is reported to have then said in an interview with a local TV station, And then I go on to find out it's a gay bar, I said, God, is he gay? I got scared, Shit, is he gay? And he's not gay, so I said, Phew … There's a report that he's condemned his son's actions.

On November 19, 1980, exactly 42 years before the attack on Club Q, sky pilot and former New York City Transit cop Ronald Crumpley attacked Sneakers Bar on West St. in Greenwich Village with an Uzi sub-machine gun. He shot at people from the outside of the bar. Minutes earlier he'd shot two gay men in front of a deli some blocks away. Crumpley ended up killing two people and wounding several others that night. After he was caught that night he was reported to have told police, I'll kill them all - the gays - they ruin everything. In 1981, a jury found Crumpley not responsible by reason of mental disease or defect for the murders and attempted murders. He was confined to secure psychiatric hospitals and died in April 2015, at 73.

My male ex and I, along with some other gay and lesbian activists we knew, could have ended up near that attack. We we part of a group called the Gay Media alliance. And we had been co-sponsoring with other groups Town Hall types of meetings for some time. We'd been holding them in Greenwich House, just off Sheridan Square in the Village. But on that night we'd held the meeting in a place on the lower east side of Manhattan. This at the behest of some folks who were members of an East Village gay neighborhood group. Had we had our Town Hall meeting in the usual place we would probably have been walking along Christopher St. and been down by West St. at around the time that Crumpley began his murder spree.

We had a march the next night to remember the victims of the homophobic attack. In fact there were two marches. My male ex and I had been contacted by various other gay and lesbian activists about holding a march that night. We agreed to do it. We put out the word that the march would start from Sheridan Square at 7:00 PM. We found out later in the day that a group that claimed that they were the official representatives of the lesbian and gay community had also called a march, for about 8 PM, I think. So we held our march and then the other march happened. Most of us who'd been at the first march went to both marches. There was sadness and anger that this former cop had attacked so many gay and lesbian people in what many had been considering a gay enclave. Anti-gay slanders from politicians like Ronald Reagan on down were considered a part of these kinds of attacks.

So far inn 2022, state law makers have introduced 344 anti-LGBT+∞ bills and passed 25 of them into law, according to the Human Rights Campaign. There's been a great deal of anti-LGBT+∞ rhetoric from quite a few right-wing politicians for the past several years. Between that and the gun proliferation we've seen in America over that time LGBT+∞ folks need to watch out for our own safety.

LGBT Marriages
The Fight For Marriage Equality Continues

In more hopeful news, the Respect for Marriage Act passed the House and is in the Senate. It would repeal the Defense of Marriage Act, which was signed into law in the wee hours of the morning in secret by Bill Clinton in 1996, and which banned the federal government from recognizing same-gender marriages and the new law would also require every state to recognize marriages performed in other states. It's passed the hurdle of having enough senators in favor of it so that they don't have to worry about a filibuster. The new law would also protect interracial marriages. It's expected to be passed, with an amendment that allows an out for superstition-based non-profits, this coming week. We'll see what happens.

SARS-CoV-2 virus
Thousands Still Die Every Week

According to the Johns-Hopkins Web site COVID-19 cases in the whole world reached 640,977,014 on Friday, and global deaths reached 6,629,525. In America the number of cases as of Friday was 98,559,921 and the death toll in America was 1,079,182, so 2,347 people have died of COVID-19 in America since our last program which is essentially the same as the previous weekly death toll. The pandemic is not over. Pickles of the North and I are still keeping our masks on. It's been a month since I got my bivalent vaccination, so I should have maximum immunity against the BA.5 variant that has been dominant for the last couple of months, and I should be really in good shape to resist those new variants. Pickles of the North got her bivalent shot quite a while ago so we're both in good shape with that.

By the time this program airs on Saturday morning all of those figures we quoted will be higher of course. This was all mostly preventable.

The Artemis 1 Mission Patch
Artemis 1 Mission Patch

Pickle here! We talked about the continuing Artemis 1 mission, with the Orion spacecraft orbiting the moon from way way out - 57,000 miles! It then fired burners to enter its Distant Retrograde Orbit 40,000 miles above the moon's surface. It will take Orion one week to complete half an orbit around the moon as its systems undergo performance testing. The effects of deep space radiation will be measured through sensors on the three moonikin mannikin astronauts subbing for human astronauts on this first Artemis mission. NASA's Snoopy and ESA's Shaun the Sheep have gone boldly where no stuffed toys have gone before!

Orion has surpassed the Apollo 13 mission in farthest distance travel led by a craft built to carry humans. (The flight path of Apollo 13 of course had to be adjusted to get the crew safely back to earth when it lost power and oxygen during a fire in its Service Module. The crew had to evacuate to the Lunar Module and after much seat of the pants engineering back on earth and a recalculated flight path, the crew made it home.) You can visit NASA's Web site for all the latest updates on the Artemis 1 mission.

Old wooden radio
Did We Air Last Week?

Some Programming Notes: We got suddenly preempted two weeks ago. And we're not sure if last week's program went out over the air. We do know that the stream crashed, and that made a mess of the archive. Seems like nobody at WBAI can tell us if we were actually heard over the air last Saturday morning, and by that I mean heard on a radio. Anyway, the WBAI Web master made an archive of the file we'd sent in for the last program, so if you missed it, and want to hear it, it's on the WBAI archive. You can get to the archive by going to WBAI.ORG and clicking on Listen to our archives on demand, or you can click on this link to the archive of that program.

There are a lot of issues that are considered hazardous to talk about on the air at WBAI, even though the gag rule was lifted in 2002. However, there is the Internet! There are mailing lists which you can subscribe to and Web based message boards devoted to WBAI and Pacifica issues. Many controversial WBAI/Pacifica issues are discussed on these lists.

One open list that no longer exists was the WBAI-specific Goodlight Web based message board. It was sometimes referred to on Back of the Book as the bleepin' blue board, owing to the blue background that was used on its Web pages. This one had many people posting anonymously and there was also an ancillary WBAI people board that was just totally out of hand.

In June 2012, I ended up having to salvage the bleepin' blue board, and so I was the moderator on it for its last seven years, until it got too expensive.

Sometimes we used to have live interaction with people posting on the Goodlight Board during the program.

Our very own Uncle Sidney Smith, whose program Saturday Morning With the Radio On used to alternate with us, has a blog these days. You can reach his blog here.

There used to be a number of mailing lists related to Pacifica and WBAI. Unfortunately, they were all located on Yahoo! Groups. When Yahoo! Groups was totally shut down in December 2020, all of those mailing lists ceased to exist. One year earlier their file sections and archives of E-mails, had been excised leaving only the ability to send E-mails back and forth among the members. Now it's all gone. Older Back of the Book program Web pages tell a little more about those lists.

We like to stay interactive with our listeners. Here are the various options for you to get in touch with us.

You can also send me E-mail.

And now you can even reach me on Twitter Twitter logo

WBAI related links

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WBAI Management's official Web site

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