Merger polarizes

Letter to the editor

To the Editor:

I am actively involved in the AFTRA/SAG consolidation and affiliation (C & A) movement. For members of both unions, it is an important issue, and not one to be taken lightly.

I have been visiting sets here in New York; leafleting all over town and generally trying to talk to actors about the importance of this vote.

There are those who disagree with the C&A plan, and have cogent reasons for doing so. Some are confused and hear the rampant rumors that waft down Manhattan’s avenues. These, I steer in the direction of the several informational meetings, which can usually answer most questions, and help the member make an educated choice.

There is, however, a section of the SAG membership who tell me of vast intramural conspiracies in the two unions. I hear tales of union corruption and malfeasance. I am told by some that C&A would be the culmination of any number of people’s nefarious plot to destroy the union.

There are those, too, who can only see injustices done them in their own careers, or just want to “teach SAG a lesson” by rejecting C&A. Last week a group of L.A.-based stuntpeople told me, in no uncertain terms, to go f–k myself.

It is amazing to me how this vote on C&A has polarized some thesps.

A cynical person could almost see the hand of “management,” fomenting a rebellion; infecting the opinions of the memberships by rumor and calumny so as to divide them and thus achieve the defeat of C&A, fractionalizing the unions even more. Of course, this scenario would be more than beneficial to producers.

Then again, maybe I am spreading rumors.

Buzz Roddy

New York City

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