Here at the Democratic National Convention in Denver, Congressperson Barbara Lee told a crowd at a Global AIDS Alliance Fund reception yesterday: "AIDS is the greatest humanitarian and national security crisis in the world today." She had been announced by two fellow Bay Areans: first, actor Danny Glover (who had startled attendees by announcing that one in every twenty adults in Washington DC is HIV-positive) and then Sen. Barbara Boxer, who called Lee "my sister, my leader." Lee told the crowd that she wants the next international AIDS conference to be held "in my district - in Oakland, California."
Other East Bayites kept popping up all over downtown Denver. Clad in their trademark pink outfits and toy crowns and clutching ruffled pink parasols, representatives of the Albany-based activist group Code Pink sweltered in 90-degree heat watching a sparsely attended anti-prison forum at which orators kept calling prisons "concentration camps" and shouting, "Free 'em all!" Among the smiling spectators was Ward Churchill, former head of the University of Colorado's ethnic-studies department, wearing a "Natural Born Guerrilla" T-shirt.