Unification News for April 1997

The Pure Love Alliance Rallies at the Oscars

by Mary Hose-Los Angeles, CA

On March 24, we protested against pornography and the abuse of the First Amendment as shown in the infamous movies "The People vs. Larry Flynt" at the 69th Academy Awards.

It was a virtually unprecedented event, so none of us really knew what to expect. The first plan of action was reserving a place on line in order to get a seat in the bleachers. There was already a little line forming at the gates of the Shrine Auditorium (where the Awards ceremony was taking place), so we had to send a few members to sleep out there on the pavement Friday night in order to reserve a few spaces for us (we were about 80 or so altogether).

Early Saturday morning a phone call came from one of the members who had been camping out overnight in the line, telling us to come quickly, since it looked likely the other fans might take our places. Howard Self, the national director of the Pure Love Alliance, emphasized the fact that we were on a "spy mission" so we shouldn't even be casually chatting to other members we knew-otherwise, the officials and security might suspect something was up. So we stayed with our designated groups of ten people or so and ignored the other PLA members the rest of the time.

Saturday morning the media was scanning the line of fans to get interviews before they let us through the gates and into the stands. Finally, when the clock struck 12pm the line began to move and slowly but surely we filtered through the gates and into the stands. We had to pass through metal detectors; the security thoroughly checked our bags. Everyone received yellow bracelets so we could leave and re- enter the stands freely. The stands were right up close to the red carpet where the stars would be walking through. We got as near to the front as we could. While we sat out in the hot sun, Frank, an 18-year veteran of the Awards, entertained everyone and enthusiastically cried, "Isn't this great? You ain't seen nothing yet!" Little did he know....

We became friends with the other fans and found out some had come from as far as Florida for the event! Down on the red carpet, reporters and cameramen buzzed about, taking shots of the crowd doing the wave which we PLA members started. George got well acquainted with the media. Good Morning America gave him caviar and filmed him eating it after everyone shouted "GIVE GEORGE CAVIAR." It was a pretty good crowd of 200 on our side of the bleachers and no one really suspected anything.

Saturday night came and about ten PLA members slept out in the stands to save our spots. All day Sunday we had shifts of members waiting at the stands. We met back at the CARP center that evening; we received our Pure Love Alliance T-shirts and our cloth banners which had written upon them "Free DUMB of Speech" and "Take a Hint, Larry Flynt, No Porno" and "Perversion of the First Amendment." That evening we took time to practice our protest. George was appointed as the cheerleader. We were to watch him for the sign; then we were all to stand up, show our T-shirts, whip out our banners and chant at the top of our lungs when the director Milos Forman's name was announced. Sunday night came and again a bunch of us camped out at the stands.

The big day came so quickly. Monday morning the streets were blocked off and the crowds began to gather all around the Shrine and outside the bleachers. There were even people on top of buildings hoping to catch a glimpse. Our members came through the gates from the center in groups of three. How did we hide the shirts and banners? We had the PLA shirts hidden under our jackets and shirts and the banners we tied around our waists and under our pants. By the grace of God everyone made it through the security checkpoint without being caught with the "goods".

The media stands were completely packed by 3:30pm. Hyun Do, a PLA member, was dressed from head to toe in gold (spitting image of the Oscar) and he got the bulk of media attention prior to the stars. Although everyone was smiling and acting excited, there was an undertone of utmost seriousness in the hearts of all of us. The reality of the situation hit and I was reminded of how the spies must've felt when they first entered Canaan. The key was to be like Joshua and Caleb and not get intimidated by everyone. I mean, only a billion people would be watching this event!!!

At four o'clock the first few limousines pulled up and the guests and stars walked the carpet. There was an emcee there who had the big-name stars come up and introduce themselves for the fans and cameras. Helen Hunt, Chris O'Donnel, one by one they came up and we cheered like mad. Overhead a jet plane flew with a trailing banner which read "Columbia Pictures Sucks-by Larry Flynt." Apparently Flynt had not received an invitation to the Oscars (but later he managed to get in). I caught a glimpse of George, who was watching intently for the director, Milos Forman. Sure enough, the emcee introduced Milos Forman, who stood up on the platform. But before he could get a word out, George stood up, took off his shirt and began flinging it in the air like a madman. This was our cue, so within seconds all 80 of us were up on our feet pulling off our disguises and flashing our banners to the world. The attention instantly flew to us and we began to shout our lines "HEY, HI, HO, PORN MUST GO!" and "NO OSCARS FOR FLYNT!" in unison. Nothing mattered anymore, and we became confident as our righteous shouts intensified. The security closed in on us (one lady guard even grabbed Magda, but she barked back "THIS IS FREEDOM OF SPEECH!"). Even the emcee told us to "be polite! Sit down and shut up!" but we kept going untouched by his words. Though there were hundreds of fans and stars and guests everywhere, we totally dominated the atmosphere until Howard gave us the sign to march out of the stands and on to the streets. It was as if we were saying there is an issue more important to us which deals with morality and the future of this country, and it means a lot more than seeing a bunch of famous actors and actresses parade in their silly attired. As we left the place, the crowd gave us cheers and jeers and Muhammad Ali and Kurt Russell gave a smile of approval. Chris O'Donnel remarked as he was being interviewed, "Well, there goes half the crowd."

What a feeling! We did it and it was awesome! We felt like we were 50 feet tall. Once we got to the streets outside we continued to chant our one-liners until we finally joined in a huddle and belted out three cheers of victory.

That night we piled into the living room and cheered as we watched ourselves being covered in many of the evening news shows and reports. We really took the media by surprise. Heck, we took the whole world by surprise! It was another victory for God's side, and the most righteous, awesome happening: THE PURE LOVE ALLIANCE.

Here's an excerpt from Variety Magazine, one of the many papers which buzzed about us the day after the rally:

"This year the action really heated up when Milos Forman, director the `The People vs. Larry Flynt,' took the emcee stand with Army Archerd. Before Daily Variety's senior columnist could get his first question out, a group of 80 protesters who had camped out in the bleachers since Friday evening, ripped off their jackets and shirts to reveal T- shirts that read `The Pure Love Alliance.' While the striptease and the name might imply support for Flynt, the group began chanting, `No Hustler, No Flynt,' and held up signs that read `Take a hint, Larry Flynt, No Porno!' Forman was drowned out and the security took some of

the signs away and tried to get the protesters to sit or leave, but they continued chanting until Forman left the dais (platform) and Archerd shouted, `Would you please shut up!'"

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