This past week has been an interesting one.
I was NOT sick just long enough to attend an organizational meeting for people that were interested in running for office this fall for the Hollywood Board (and if enough votes are cast for them, the National Board) of the Screen Actors' Guild.
I'm thinking I just might do it. They asked me to, and I'm mulling it over.
It's one thing to make video trying to explain the math of residuals, why voting for the contract makes sense, and what the difference is between Breakdown Services and Actors' Access. That was rewarding, if not a bit flame-baiting for the opposition.
It's quite another to put your time and effort into merging the two acting unions into one strong, cohesive alliance, allowing all performers to present a united front to their negotiating adversaries. Yes, I'm quite in favor of the merger of AFTRA and SAG, and I really love talking about the strength that unity would bring our constituency.
There are many in the union who have long opposed the merger of the two unions, for various reasons, some anachronistic ("There goes our pensions!" Not.) and some with thoughtful and valid concerns. But the advent of the Internet as a new and unproven publishing platform is fairly pushing us in that direction.
I've been baited and screamed at all year by a former friend and her allies due to my position on the current viability of the Internet, and I expect that will continue and even intensify should I choose to run. But this isn't my first rodeo, and it certainly isn't my first union election.
I'd love your thoughts, and if you're a Guild (that's SAG, not Guild Wars) or Federation member (that's AFTRA, not United Federation of Planets), I'd love to hear from you on what you'd like to see get done these next couple of years with our organizations.
And don't be afraid to disagree with me - I won't be afraid to let you know how I feel either. But I won't dismiss your viewpoints out of hand, nor will I demonize you or your arguments. I think that's one of the big mistakes that former friend and her Membership First allies make all the time - and as Dr Phil would say, "How's that workin' out for ya?" Not so well.
So, let's talk. And while I'm mulling it over, tell me why you think I should or shouldn't run.