21 May 2006

"Choose or Lose" forum on Tuesday

Robert Limon, a local community organizer and documentarian, has put together a unique event incorporating a mayoral forum and an opportunity for advocates for keeping the team in Oakland to voice their opinions. More details are in the press release:
Oakland Mayoral Candidates “Choose or Lose” the A’s at unique forum
Public invited to meet the next Mayor of Oakland, and express their opinion for documentary film.
OAKLAND, CA - Choose or Lose the Oakland A’s is a new community project based on giving EVERY Oakland/East Bay community member a chance to voice their opinion whether they “choose or lose” the A's. Bottom line: The Oakland community needs an outlet to express their perspective to keep the A's in Oakland (or not). This project kicks off with a Mayoral Community Forum on Tuesday, May 23, from 5:30-7:30 PM at the Uptown Bar and Nightclub, 1928 Telegraph (at 19th), in downtown Oakland.
“My friends and I have been frustrated that it is the 11th hour and we are very close to losing the Oakland A's, and our voices are not being heard by our leaders. My opinion, I think having a world-class championship sports team in our community is a fantastic community resource and asset that benefits our business and property values. I want to see a common sense solution invented by the brilliant minds of Oakland citizens and leaders to facilitate and implement the construction of a new stadium in Oakland. Now it’s YOUR turn to express your opinion on the future of the A’s in Oakland”, says Robert Limon, a lifelong Oakland community member and A's fan.
“Twenty years ago the SF Giants were threatening to leave San Francisco. Imagine how life would be for the SF Bay Area if they had left. Imagine the embarcadero and all of the positive economic developments that would not be there today had the Giants left,” said Bob Fratti, owner of the Uptown and host of this Mayoral event.
Show up and hear for yourselves as the next Mayor of Oakland states, for the record, if they “choose or lose” the A’s, and what they WILL or WON’T DO. Community members will also have the opportunity to ask questions of the candidates and express their own perspective to keep the A's in Oakland (or not). The community can participate in a documentary film where they will have 30 seconds to say their “Choose or Lose” the A’s message. No matter how it turns out, we all will know that our voices were heard.
Please advertise and cover this Mayoral Forum and Community event. Any and all assistance will be greatly appreciated. The event will begin promptly at 5:30 and will run until 7:30 PM at the Uptown, 1928 Telegraph Ave downtown Oakland. For more information, contact Robert Limon at 510-501-5811 or
I will definitely be there.


Georob said...

Potentially the first productive idea to come out of Oakland in a long time. I would advise people like Drummer and other OAFC-ers to come prepared with ideas, solutions, and not let the thing denigrate into a "Bash Lew Wolff" session.

John Heywood said...

Agreed. I wish I could be there, but am living outside the country at the moment. Oaklanders who are able to go and want to keep the A's in our city must work to frame the debate in a way that supports our position.

The phrase "choose or lose" is a great start and should be used whenever possible so as to hammer home the notion that there is a choice to be made, and if we, as a city, do not make the right choice (keeping our A's in Oakland), we lose. No one wants to be a loser, so by framing the debate this way we're constructing an upper hand for ourselves in the situation.

The logical next step would thus be to look at the existing arguments and reasons for moving the A's out of Oakland (or rather, for not keeping the A's), and do our best to create small, 2-3 word "catch phrases" that support our position to keep the A's, that are easy to identify with and appeal to both the conscious and the subconscious of the mayoral candidates.

An example would be to frame the idea of public funding (or even a ballpark tax) not as a burden on our city and on Oaklanders, but as an investment in the future of our city. We must point to the things in the city that we already enjoy and that taxes have paid for and point out how glad we are that our parents and previous generations were wise enough to invest their taxes in such things. Surely we'd like our own kids and future generations of Oaklanders to be able to say the same thing, right?

The deal is this: often times, simply giving someone the facts is not enough to sway their opinion on a matter. Especially when we get mad and bash someone and seem irrational and unable to compromise on any level. The facts are not enough. Instead, by reframing the debate, we can appeal to our potential allies on their own terms and still direct them toward the path that we want them to take.

If anyone that is able to attend the Choose or Lose event is interested in talking more and/or working with me on this, even though I am in Eastern Europe, please visit my profile page and send me an email. Cheers guys/gals and GO A'S!

Keith Salminen said...

I'll be there

Georob said...

The other thing that shouldn't happen is arguing about why Oakland is better than Fremont.

Right now, Oakland has no site other than the Coliseum, and if it's not going to be there then Oakland has nothing. Well, the suburbs are better than nothing, folks.

Again, we need to find out once and for all how willing city officials are to find that Oakland site and work with the A's on it.

It's assumed that the attendees all want the A's to stay in Oakland, so leave the "preserve our legacy" B.S. at home

Bleacher Dave said...

I wish I could be there. Love the positivity.

chooseorlose said...

Hi All,

We had a great turnout at the Uptown, and all there want to get a ball rolling big time.

I want to get get our A's chooser community Activated with wonder powers! Let's build on what happened at the Uptown with a planning meeting.

Also, if you want to get on the same page, and receive emails from me re: planning, action, etc., please email me at

Now down to biz:

I love the way the OAFC and the Bleacher Flag wavers (what do they call themselves?) got together. I can't wait till the next home game when they hang a little visual message.

I spoke to Monte Poole from the Trib today. Great guy. He was stoked that things went well and he wants to be kept in the loop as we get the community activated and force our politicians to get creative and innovative.

Now the fun stuff:
Let's meet to plan our Tailgate Rally and In Stadium Demonstration.
We said we wanted 500 people (that's a little bit modest) at this rally, and to kick off a cool, creative, visual stadium demonstration that Oakland fans will want to connect with. We have to figure this out. But here's the work so far that needs to be done, and that will be discussed at our future meeting:
1. we need to decide on a date for the 1st Tailgate Rally .
2. What is the in stadium demonstration(?)--something cool that people will want to connect with and want to participate in (let's set a trend).
3. Promotion of the Rally.
4. Press relations for the rally.
5. Details and work re: rally.
6. Dates for the next 3 rallys.
7. Other issues?

Now here is the hard part.
When should we meet at the Uptown? You have 3 choices. Please choose your favorite:
1--Next tuesday is a home game at 7:05 pm. Should we meet at 5 or 5.30?
2--Wednesday May 31st is a possibility at 5.30 P.
3--the week after, Tuesday June 6th. 5.30 p or 8 PM

Let's get this settled and then we can fasten our seatbelts for a fun ride.