Okay, so I have been active with the Screen Actor’s Guild in the past, but honestly can’t say that I have been super involved for the past few years. I believe it’s because I don’t know what to believe any more. I have such a hard time wrapping my head around actors and unions willingly f’ing over other actors and themselves in the long run with bad contracts and weak backbones… And yet, I’ve seen it over and over.
AFTRA f’ed actors over when they offered inferior contracts to TV producers a few years ago, undercutting the Screen Actors Guild contracts… So, AFTRA, a union that is SUPPOSED to care about ACTORS, F’ed all of the actors that belong to AFTRA that also worked SAG contracts. The same jobs for less money and benefits. And don’t even get me started on actors that are Fi-Core.
I have friends that are VERY PRO MERGER (team “if you can’t beat ’em, join them”), and I have friends that are NOT FOR THE MERGER (most of them seem to be for one union, but not without more clarity to the answers)… And I don’t know if I’ve ever talked with anyone that’s not for all actors being in the same union at some point…
I will publicly say that I have heard both arguments, and let me tell you something… I really don’t see a good clear answer yet… To me it seems there are too many questions still looming to make a clear decision… And this is not something that can be undone.
I will also say that what we have right now isn’t working very well either, that I wasn’t happy with the AFTRA contract when it was proposed to the membership, and knew it was a horrid thing, begged people to NOT LET IT PASS (here are three blogs I posted in 2008 concerning that contract: “For God’s Sake… No!” and “I Hope” and “More Saying No“). But obviously more voted for it, and we’ve felt the results since, and now we, the blue collar professional actors of Hollywood, seem to be making less and less each year for the same exact jobs…
If you’re looking for me to tell you HOW TO VOTE right now on the proposed merger, forget it. At this point, there’s no way I’ll take any responsibility for whatever outcome is on the horizon.
But I will say to all those actors that are publicly SCREAMING TO MERGE NOW… if it all goes to shit, it’s on you. Just like those of you that voted for that CRAPPY AFTRA CONTRACT a few years ago. And just like my “vote no” words from 2008 were captured in time, so will your words of “vote yes.” So if this passes, you better be right.
By the way a simple Google search will show you some of those individuals that publicly went on record to get that detrimental AFTRA contract passed in 2008.
There are repercussions to these contracts. Whether it’s going on strike, merging unions, accepting wage cuts… Whether you’re voting no, voting yes, or not voting at all.
I will read what’s sent to me, I will continue to read opinions from both sides…
Here’s the VOTE NO – MERGER page.
The PRO-MERGER SAG page can be found here.
And here are the SAG-AFTRA merger documents, which are on my “to read” list.
Again, I’m not trying to sway anyone, any particular way… This is a big vote. Huge. And I don’t think it’s as simple as “I think it’d be good to be in one union.” Or “one union one voice.” The answers and questions that really matter are in the details, and I’m still not convinced one way or another.
Poor decisions hurt for years and years to come…
“You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone…”
So what am I saying… Don’t just listen to members and celebrities that tell you to swallow the pill or spit the pill up… Make smart and informed choices for yourself…
If I come to a definitive conclusion, as I have with many of the contracts in the past. I will post about it again.
Some say in life sometimes you just have to leap… And figure the rest as you fall. Because without leaping you risk never soaring.
But others, look before they leap, because they have been shown through experience that wings don’t have a tendency to form spontaneously. And they would rather have a hang-glider, bungee cord, parachute or crash pad in place…
And yes I do know there are people that no matter how many things you gave them, showing them how safe things were, would never jump.
Me, I like to minimize the risk, and know as much as possible before jumping… But when I’ve learned enough, and trust it’s the right decision… I will jump.
– Quiche Out