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Health care advocates, HIV/AIDS activists, gay and lesbian citizens, and others will gather to "Rally For Our Lives" on Sat., Oct. 19, 4-7pm on the south steps of the Texas Capitol. The rally protests recent Texas Dept. of Health cuts in AIDS funding (see "ALLGO's HIV Funding Fight," facing page). The 15th annual AIDS Walk Austin will take place the next day, Oct. 20, also at the Capitol; a "street fair" will start at 11am, with the walk kicking off at 2pm.

The new Congressional Dist. 31 race may be former state district Judge and GOP candidate John Carter's to lose, but he's got his share of opponents: Dem. David Bagley, Green John Petersen, Libertarian Clark Simmons, and independent Russell Crawford. The voters can consider the matter up close in a candidate forum at 6pm Friday, Oct. 18, at the Treasure of the Hills Senior Center, 400 Ridgewood in Cedar Park. For info, call H. Keith Sterzing at 512/401-3392.

The Texas Student Conference on Alternatives to Corporate Globalization, sponsored by the Texas Fair Trade Coalition, begins Friday, Oct. 18, at the Texas AFL-CIO hall, 1106 Lavaca, with a talk and workshop by UT journalism professor Robert Jensen. Next morning, registration and the full Saturday schedule, including an 11am talk by Noam Chomsky and organizing workshops throughout the day, moves to Our Lady of Guadalupe Church Community Hall, 1206 E. Ninth. For more info, contact Jere Locke at 472-4915. (Chomsky will also speak noon Sunday at UT's LBJ auditorium, first come first seated.) Among the speakers will be Steve Rendall of the Fairness and Accuracy in Media activist group, who also will debate with S. Robert Lichter of the Center for Media and Public Affairs at Bass Lecture Hall in the LBJ School of Public Affairs (UT campus, Red River and Manor) tonight (Thursday) at 7pm. Topic: "Media Bias: The Liberal/Conservative Debate and Beyond."

U.S. Rep. Lamar Smith, the GOP incumbent in Dist. 21 (which now includes West Austin) will hold a news conference at 2:30pm Saturday, Oct. 19, at Travis Co. Republican HQ, 7801 N. Lamar Ste. A-126. Smith will discuss "national security, financial security, and educational security." The public is invited. For more info, call the TCRP at 302-1776.

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