If, as Frederick Douglass put it in 1857, "power concedes nothing without a demand," David France's How to Survive a Plague (2012) shows an immediate demand -- faster, more effective response to the AIDS crisis, more resources for effective treatment -- via well-organized groups ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) and its 1991 spinoff TAG (Treatment Action Group). Much of this compelling documentary covers the late 1980s and first half of the 1990s. In it, one will see not only the rank and file of ACT UP and TAG and their allies, but also buffoonish conservative enemies like North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms, and let's not forget the mixed response of Pat Buchanan on Firing Line. Also: see George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton and Charlie Rose, among many others, drawn into the maelstrom.
How to Survive a Plague is moving, fast-paced and exhilarating all at once. Fantastic!
Today's Rune: Signals.