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January 12th, 2009

Educational Film

You knew it was going to be an easy day in class when you walked in and saw one of the school’s Bell & Howell Filmosound 16mm projectors set up in the middle of the room. If the teacher was a technologically challenged sort, they’d let the class AV geek (sometimes that was me) thread the film through it and run it. You got to sit back and watch a film, and it was a safe bet that the film would be a lot more interesting and engaging then whatever teacher taught that particular class. Or to put it another way, you knew you had a good teacher when the sight of the film projector was a bit of a let-down.

My favorites were the Bell Labs educational films. Least appreciated on my list were the Highway Safety Institute films that grossed and scared the crap out of me to the point where I almost refused to get a driver’s license. Oh…and the sex ed films about the dangers of heavy petting. Who cared about that stuff anyway?

Then there were the films warning us about the dangers of homosexuality. I think I saw this one in high school…

Yeah, I laughed. As someone who actually sat through some of those old 1950s morality films, I can tell you that whoever did that one got it just about perfect…down to the stilted dialogue and cheesy narration. All that was missing from it was the randomly warbly sound of the old 16mm projector audio.

But some of us still remember the real thing…

That’s what me and my peers all got back in grade school. They were showing this crap to us as early as 8th grade. Before the personal computer came along, before the internet, before cable TV and home video, the only things we knew about homosexuals and homosexuality, were what we were taught in films like that one.

I’m sure those 1950s film makers had no idea, no clue themselves, that some of the kids watching that film were gay themselves, or that the others in the class would one day learn that an old classmate they’d gone to school alongside of is gay, and have to reconcile the kid they’d known with the image of the sick and twisted homosexual monster that they were taught. I’m sure those 1950s film makers had no idea, no clue themselves, what it was like to be either one of those kids, all grown up now, looking apprehensively at each other.

by Bruce | Link | React!

September 4th, 2008

Why We Fight…(continued)

The Sidney Morning Herald prints what NBC didn’t want you to know…

Out-and-out champion celebrates

HE KISSED him briefly in the stands and gave him his Olympic bouquet. Later, outside the glowing blue Water Cube, Matthew Mitcham and his partner, Lachlan Fletcher, firmly embraced, both shedding tears. Next it was his mother Vivien’s turn to hold her golden boy, and more tears fell.

Carefully nursing Mitcham’s Olympic bouquet, Fletcher spoke of the incredible journey that the diver had taken to the top. Fletcher has been the one constant over the past two years.

He was his rock when Mitcham retired in his late teenage years suffering anxiety and depression. He watched him become a stunt diver at the Sydney Royal Easter show, supported his fight back into the sport and now to win Olympic gold.

"It’s been so up and down," Fletcher said. "When I first met him, he was pretty unhappy, he wasn’t liking the diving in Brisbane at all, he didn’t want to do it, wasn’t happy being there.

"It took a lot for him to retire and stop doing it because it had been his life for so long. He wanted to try and be happy again. He took time to do normal things that people do.

"Then after five or six months he started to really miss it again and he had the opportunity to dive with Chava [Sobrino, his coach]. He started that and loved it ever since, every second of it, which is great to see him happy all the time."

What NBC didn’t want you to know:  Not that Matthew Mitcham is gay, but that he loves, and is loved, and that relationship nurtured and sustained him when he was beaten and down, and brought him back, all they way to the gold.  Love does that.  What NBC didn’t want you to know wasn’t that Mitcham is gay, but that love does that for gay people too.  To know that, is to see republican gay bashing for what it is.  Not a principled moral stand, but a crime against humanity.

What you have to understand about the entire gay rights struggle is that this is what was taken away from us for so very, very long, and what the haters are Still trying bitterly to take away from us.  Not sex, but love.  Vital, nurturing, sustaining, intimate human love.  The love that makes us whole, that completes us, that empowers us to reach beyond ourselves to the best within us. That is what was taken from us for so many human generations.  That is what we of the post-stonewall generations have been fighting to take back.  Our human status. 

When the U.S. Supreme Court nullified the sodomy laws the screaming from the hate pews afterward wasn’t about gay couples having sex, but fear the courts would now let them get married.  It was the first thing they started yapping about.  When bigots like Orson Scott Card say that a homosexual’s highest allegiance is to the society that gives them access to sex, he’s not describing what we are but what he sees us as being.  Not human.  Humans love, not-humans only have sex.  And you can rip the heart out of not-humans, because they don’t feel any pain.

by Bruce | Link | React!

August 29th, 2008

Oh For Heaven’s Sake…Hey Dave…Go Get Me That Boilerplate Apology Form Willya…

NBC, suffering a torrent of bad publicity for closeting gold medalist Matthew Mitcham during its broadcast of the Olympic men’s diving events, has now issued an apology…

"We regret that we missed the opportunity to tell Matthew Mitcham’s story. We apologize for this unintentional omission.”

Well that certainly satisfies me…

by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

August 25th, 2008

The Gay Basher’s Friends

You may have heard that an Australian named Matthew Mitcham won the gold in the 10 meter diving event.  You may have heard that in doing so, he broke the Chinese sweep of the diving events.  You may have heard that a string of disappointments some years ago caused him to drop out of the sport briefly and that his comeback this year was the end result of a lot of very hard and determined work.  What you might not have heard, if your only exposure to the China Olympics was our mainstream news media, is that Mitcham is openly gay…

NBC Censors Sexual Orientation Of Openly Gay Gold Medalist Diver

According to, of the 10,708 athletes at the Olympics this year, just 10 have identified themselves publicly as being gay. Of the 10, Australian diver Matthew Mitcham is the only male gay athlete.

Yesterday, Mitcham won the gold in the in the 10m platform diving event, scoring an upset over the Chinese team, which was heavily favored to win. But as Maggie Hendricks at Yahoo’s Olympics blog notes, NBC never mentioned Mitcham’s orientation:

NBC did not mention Mitcham’s orientation, nor did they show his family and partner who were in the stands. NBC has made athletes’ significant others a part of the coverage in the past, choosing to spotlight track athlete Sanya Richards’ fiancee, a love triangle between French and Italian swimmers and Kerri Walsh’s wedding ring debacle.

As Atrios said the other day: love triangle okay…gay, not so much.

There are two parts to the culture of violence toward gay people.  The first is the relentless demonization of gay people.  By churches, by religious leaders, by politicians and their parties, by bigots with a platform.  The public is told we are a threat to children, to families, to society, to the very existence of the human race.  We are portrayed as sexual predators, disease spreading sociopaths, self-centered narcissistic parasites on society.  We are said to be shallow, vain, self-centered and interested only in self gratification on the one hand, and self-hating, self-destructive and miserable on the other.  When we are not dangerous sociopaths we are contemptible faggots.  The other part is the silencing of gay voices.  Where we are not allowed to tell our own stories, in our own voices, where social invisibility is imposed upon us, as though we are a dirty secret best kept away from view, the only voices that are heard, are the voices of those who hate us.  The hatemongers go unanswered, and this is what happens…



Oh…and this…

I now feel very fortunate that I was able to spend some private time with Matt last summer during my vacation from Saudi Arabia. We sat and talked. I told Matt that he was my hero and that he was the toughest man that I had ever known. When I said that, I bowed down to him out of respect for his ability to continue to smile and keep a positive attitude during all the trials and tribulations that he had gone through. He just laughed. I also told him how proud I was because of what he had accomplished and what he was trying to accomplish. The last thing I said to Matt was that I loved him, and he said he loved me. That was the last private conversation that I ever had with him.

Impact on my life? My life will never be the same. I miss Matt terribly. I think about him all the time—at odd moments when some little thing reminds me of him; when I walk by the refrigerator and see the pictures of him and his brother that we’ve always kept on the door; at special times of the year, like the first day of classes at UW or opening day of sage chicken hunting. I keep wondering almost the same thing that I did when I first saw him in the hospital. What would we have become? How would he have changed his piece of the world to make it better?

Impact on my life? I feel a tremendous sense of guilt. Why wasn’t I there when he needed me most? Why didn’t I spend more time with him? Why didn’t I try to find another type of profession so that I could have been available to spend more time with him as he grew up? What could I have done to be a better father and friend? How do I get an answer to those questions now? The only one who can answer them is Matt. These questions will be with me for the rest of my life. What makes it worse for me is knowing that his mother and brother will have similar unanswered questions.

Impact on my life? In addition to losing my son, I lost my father on November 4, 1998. The stress of the entire affair was too much for him. Dad watched Matt grow up. He taught him how to hunt, fish, camp, ride horses, and love the state of Wyoming. Matt, Logan, dad, and I would spend two to three weeks camping in the mountains at different times of the year—to hunt, to fish, and to goof off. Matt learned to cook over an open fire, tell fishing stories about the one that got away, and to drive a truck from my father. Three weeks before Matt went to the Fireside Bar for the last time, my parents saw Matt in Laramie. In addition, my father tried calling Matt the night that he was beaten but received no answer. He never got over the guilt of not trying earlier. The additional strain of the hospital vigil, being in the hospital room with Matt when he died, the funeral services with all the media attention and the protesters, [and] helping Judy and me clean out Matt’s apartment in Laramie a few days later was too much. Three weeks after Matt’s death, dad died. Dad told me after the funeral that he never expected to outlive Matt. The stress and the grief were just too much for him. Impact on my life? How can my life ever be the same again?

Excerpt of Dennis Shepard’s Statements to the Court
November 4, 1999


There are two parts to the culture of violence toward gay people…and to all minorities.  The first is hate.  The second is that silencing of the voices of the hated, which allows hate to go unchallenged and unquestioned.  Last week a young Australian diver, after a difficult struggle to come back from burnout and defeat, won a gold medal for the 10 meter dive, beating out the best of the Chinese diving team.  You were allowed to know that.  He is openly gay, and his parents and his lover were there to support him in his quest for the gold.  He said his boyfriend was part of the support network that made his dream possible.  You weren’t allowed to know that.  Because then you might start wondering about all those things you were taught about homosexuals. 

And then you might start wondering why the news media doesn’t give a damn.


by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

May 6th, 2008

Zach Speaks

Morgan has posted to YouTube the rough cut he currently has of the opening sequence to This Is What Love In Action Looks Like. It looks to be a fantastic documentary when he gets it all put together. And for the first time, people will get a chance to hear Zach speak for himself about what happened to him.

In this clip via the historical footage Morgan managed to dig up, you get a taste of what it was like before the gay rights movement came of age. The captioning Morgan adds to it captures the sense of the times perfectly…

Once upon a time…
There were some monsters…
Everybody was scared of them…

I was a gay teen back in those days, although I spent most of it in a comfortable cocoon of ignorance. But that’s exactly how it was. Homosexuals were monsters. And then one day I realized I was one of the monsters they were talking about. Watching those clips Morgan found brought that whole period of time back to me. And for the haters, it’s still true to this day. We are monsters, not human beings. That is why the Ex-Gay ministries appeared. Not to save our souls, but to impress upon us that we are monsters.

There’s only a small portion of the interview Zach gave Morgan here. And I think I can say now that this is out, that I was privileged to be there to witness and photograph it (I agreed that Morgan would have the copyright to the photos). There is so much I haven’t been able to say these years, biting my tongue while others waved Zach’s first blog post after leaving Love In Action as proof that he had taken LIA’s side of things and ultimately agreed with what had been done to him. And Zach, let it be said, isn’t interested now, and wasn’t really then, in being the center of a media storm. The poor kid just wanted to live his life. When he cried out for help, it was to his friends. That it quickly spread all over the Internet and became an international media storm was as much a surprise to him as to anyone. But he’s smart, he’s got a good heart, and he’s perfectly capable of speaking for himself when he wants to. I think that comes through pretty clearly in the few moments you see of him in this clip.

There will be more of the interview with Zach, and much more of the events surrounding the Love In Action protests, when Morgan finally finishes his edits and premieres the documentary. I have no ETA and I don’t think Morgan does either…he’s working hard on getting it right, because its so important. It’ll be done when it’s done.

And before you ask…yes, I am listed as an Executive Producer on this documentary. But seriously…all a producer does is produce money. The film is 100 percent Morgan’s, and I cannot speak for or about anyone involved in the production or anyone interviewed in it beyond what you can already see here. Morgan and crew can all speak for themselves, and probably will if you ask them. Morgan can be reached Here, at the Sawed-Off Film’s web site. You can see a collection of Sawed-Off YouTube clips Here.

by Bruce | Link | React! (3)

November 27th, 2007

Oh Shoot Me Now…

Christ Almighty someone’s decided to breath life back into Staircase

Review: ‘Staircase’ revival – ‘Honeymooners’ in gay ’60s London

Charles and Harry could be many a bickering, thoroughly co-dependent couple who’ve been together for two decades, but life wasn’t that simple for gay men in the London of the ’60s. That’s what adds some dramatic meat and bite to Charles Dyer’s "Staircase," the otherwise schematic if waspish 1966 comedy that opened Saturday at Theatre Rhinoceros. The darker notes that creep into the last scene humanize the camp, bitchy-hairdressers couple and add depth to a fitfully funny show.

"Staircase" is of historical interest in any case. A late replacement for Mart Crowley’s unavailable "The Boys in the Band" in Artistic Director John Fisher’s 30th anniversary season, "Staircase" actually predates "Boys" (by a few months) as the first openly gay play on Broadway in the modern era. A hit in London (with Paul Scofield and Patrick Magee) in ’66, and a flop in New York (with Eli Wallach and Milo O’Shea) in ’67, it also bombed as a movie, starring Richard Burton and Rex Harrison, in ’69. In every case, the publicity stressed the heterosexual credentials of everyone involved.

If there was any doubt as to the heterosexual credentials of the makers of that film, watching it should have decisively hammered them to the floor.  That rank piece of trash is even more offensive then Boys In The Band in the cheapshit stereotypes it trades in.  It doesn’t need a fucking revival, it needs to be buried in the same grave as the blackface minstrel shows.

For two hours they moan and piss about their sad, wasted lives, never showing a sign of love or affection.  We are meant to feel sorry for them, but after all their time together there is no sign of an emotional attachment between them, no indication of a commitment to the relationship.  When they do cling to one another, it is in loneliness and desperation, emotions that have been used to characterize homosexual relationships in film and literature for a century.  Throughout the film Charlie and Harry repeat how much happier they would have been if only nature had not played them such a dirty trick…

-Vito Russo, The Celluloid Closet

Staircase mocks its aging gay characters, and invites the audience to join in.  In that, Staircase was eminently typical of the films of its day that pretended to shine a light on the sordid homosexual underworld, and were in reality nothing more then freak shows.  Played for shock value, and sporting a thin veneer of pity, straight audiences were supposed to come away from the experience happily horrified, and relieved that they weren’t like those poor twisted queers. 

There’s a great movie to be made someday about the lives of older gay people back before Stonewall.  It could have pathos, it could have comedy, it could be full of the human struggle of people living in an age when gay folk could only see monsters reflected back at them by the popular culture surrounding them…an age when most gay people themselves believed that they were sick in some deeply profound way.  Maybe someday someone will do that story.

[Edited to add the Vito Russo quote, and some additional verbiage of my own]

by Bruce | Link | React!

September 11th, 2007

Gay Geeks…Just Like Straight Geeks, Only Gay…

I’m reading a post on After Elton about gay comic book heros, or more precisely the darth thereof, and how the ones that are out there seldom fare much better then other gay characters in pop culture fiction…

Comic writer Mark Millar isn’t thrilled to learn that his story was the breaking point that inspired Perry Moore to tell a positive story of a gay superhero. A 2005 story by Millar was brought up in Sunday’s New York Times profile of Moore:

But things work out relatively well for him, which makes sense given Mr. Moore’s distaste for how some gay comic-book characters have been treated. His hackles still rise at the death of Northstar, a mutant hero who made headlines in 1992 when he uttered the words “I am gay” in the pages of a Marvel comic.

Death is rarely final in comics, so it’s no surprise that Northstar came back to life. “They couldn’t bother to mention he was gay,” Mr. Moore said of Northstar’s most recent appearance in “X-Men.”

Taking a cue from Gail Simone, a comic-book writer who first gained notice as a fan with her Web site, “Women in Refrigerators”, detailing the mistreatment of female heroes, Mr. Moore created his own tally. “Who Cares About the Death of a Gay Superhero?,” which he has delivered as a speech, includes more than 60 gay and lesbian comic book characters who have been ignored, maimed or murdered.

“Yes, bad things do happen to all people,” he wrote in it. “But are there positive representations of gay characters to counterbalance these negative ones?”

Not nearly enough, Mr. Moore said, and that’s one reason he wrote “Hero,” for which he already has ideas for future installments.

Millar wasn’t thrilled to see a story he wrote mentioned as a low point in superhero comics’ treatment of gay characters, and he reacted on his website:

Oh, tell him to f**k off.

He didn’t die because he was gay. He died because he’d been brainwashed by The Hand.

Well that explains it.  If that’s not geek enough for you, there’s always the reader comments, where one poster named ‘Cylon’ defends the treatment of Northstar thusly:

I think it was just a bad coincidence that he died three times that month…

He also died in X-Men: The End and Age of Apocalypse.  I hope he’s getting workman’s comp out of all this.

I’ve been reading a lot of Yaoi manga lately…stuff I’ve been buying almost by the ton from Amazon.  It’s probably a symptom of how starved for romance I’ve been most of my life, because in case you aren’t aware, yaoi are Japanese boy meets boy soap opera kinda stories, mostly marketed I’m told, to teenage Japanese girls.  When I joked in my cartoon series A Coming Out Story, about how I’d once had a stash of Tiger Beat and 16 Magazines under my bed, I wasn’t kidding.  And my tastes in comic book superheros ran more toward Spider Man then The Incredible Hulk.  I think Denny O’Neil and Michael Kaluta created a far more formidable dark knight in The Shadow (I have Every issue), then Frank Miller’s aging bar stool reactionary Batman.  I’m not generally attracted to the over muscled double-y chromosomed hulking bodybuilder genre of comic book hero, or to stories that are little more then blood and guts, slash and burn.  But the word ‘yaoi’ was originally coined as a term of derision by teenage Japanese boys, and it’s basically so I’m told, an acronym that means "no climax, no point, no meaning".  

I want my torrid same sex romance.  But I’d also like a little action and adventure please.  It would be Real Nice if some publisher could combine all these elements someday.  Or maybe it already is out there somewhere and I just haven’t found it yet.  Every now and then the manga creators manage to sneak in some Super Hero-ish elements.  One title I’m reading now, Hero Heel, the story of an actor cast as a TV superhero, who finds himself falling in love with the actor who plays the series super-villain.  I’m hopeful about the possibilities here.  Already in book one the creator Makoto Tateno seems to be weaving the plotline of the actor’s realtionship, with the plotline of the space opera they’re acting in.  This could be fun…


No…the guys of manga aren’t generally over muscled double-y chromosomed hulking bodybuilders.  They’re just unabashedly beautiful.  And the stories are unapologetically about love and desire.  Which is why I keep buying the damn things.  But high art they’re not.  Hmm…Northstar is actually pretty good looking…at least in this artist’s take…



…too bad he keeps dying.   Seriously…read Perry Moore’s Who Cares About the Death of a Gay Superhero, and you’ll see why I’m skeptical that the big comic book publishers, with their business focus on the fantasies of straight teenage boys and twenty-somethings, who also happen to be the demographic group responsible for most gay bashings, will ever be able to treat gay characters with much respect.  Of course Northstar had to die.  Read Moore and you’ll see how gruesomely, and what his fate was after being "resurrected".  The surprising thing is they only killed him three times.


by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

September 10th, 2007

Hey…John Wayne Isn’t Rolling In His Grave Now…

A little over a year after Hollywood gave the Best Picture award to a depthless piece of crap rather then let a film about two-gay cowboys win, the Psychotic Homosexual Villain Who Must Die Horribly is making a comebackQuelle Surprise

The villains weren’t there as a nod to the gay community or to add diversity, of course. They were coded gay to heighten their wickedness and make it that much more satisfying for straight audiences when they met their usually violent death at the hands of the hero. After all, as Zack Snyder, director of 300, said about his movie’s version of the villainous god-king Xerxes, “’What’s more scary to a 20-year-old boy than a giant god-king who wants to have his way with you?”

Oh…I dunno…  A roving pack of gay bashers walking up behind you and shouting "Hey Faggot"….?

The new film 3:10 to Yuma delivers yet another coded gay villain to add to the already crowded pantheon. A remake of the 1957 film starring Glenn Ford, Russell Crowe plays the role of outlaw Ben Wade. Christian Bale co-stars as Dan Evans, the down on his luck Civil War veteran desperate enough to try to bring Wade to justice despite the near certainty he’ll die trying. And Ben Foster stars as Charlie Prince, Wade’s villainous henchman and second in command who oozes gay subtext.

When we first see Charlie Prince, he is astride his horse, one hand draped delicately over the other with the limpest wrist this side of the Mississippi river. He is by far the nattiest dresser in the entire cast, and if that isn’t mascara he’s wearing when we first meet him then I’m Buffalo Bill.

Within the first five minutes of Prince’s appearance onscreen, one character refers to him as “missy” and “Charlie Princess,” a nickname usually not uttered to his face, but apparently widely used behind his back. Naturally, Prince is utterly ruthless, killing anyone who gets in his way, and showing no emotion at all – not unless he’s interacting with Ben Wade, who clearly makes Charlie swoon.

The Ben Foster character has a thing for his outlaw boss.  But in the end decent family values prevail, and the outlaw learns what it is to be a Real Man from decent family man Christian Bale character who was sent out to apprehend him…

Shortly thereafter, Wade is captured and Christian Bale’s Evans signs up to help convey Wade to the town of Contention where he’ll be put on board the 3:10 to Yuma, a prison train. Prince pretty much disappears from the middle part of the film, except for long shots that show him glowering menacingly at Wade’s captors or ruthlessly shooting or burning to death anyone standing between him and his beloved Ben Wade.During this section of the film, Wade and Evans get to know each other and even bond, although without any of that icky homoerotic subtext. Rather, this is two men getting to know and, to a certain extent, respect each other as real men ought to do. Crowe’s outlaw especially comes to admire this determined family man trying to bring him to justice in order to keep safe his wife and two sons back on the farm. In fact, Wade admires Evans so much that he ends up helping him complete his quest.

This fits so nicely pat with the current crackpot theories about homosexuality now being peddled by the ex-gay movement that it’s hard not to wonder if director James Mangold or writers Halsted Welles, Michael Brandt and Derek Haas didn’t ask Richard Cohen to help them research the characters of Wade and Prince.  But this is a story as old as the first fag bashing on the silver screen.  Just as every lesbian needs a Real Man to make a woman out of here, every wild and reckless young man needs a Real Man to teach him how to deal with a faggot.  Especially one that has a crush on him…

The film’s climax is appropriately dire, with bullets flying every which way. Of course, the odds against Evans’ succeeding seem impossibly high, and I won’t give away the ending (except to say that it is improbable at best), but of course Charlie Prince does figure prominently.

He arrives at the very end, riding in to rescue Wade from Evans’ heterosexual clutches. Naturally, that involves putting a bullet into Evans, an act that so infuriates Wade that he in turn pumps Prince full of bullets himself. Shocked at the actions of the man he adores, the dying Prince looks like nothing so much as a dog being put down by his master.

And what is the moral of the story children…?

As Wade watches Prince die, I couldn’t shake the feeling that thanks to the influence of Evans, he now sees Prince clearly for the first time. It is only then that he understands what friendship between two men should be like and it doesn’t involve what Prince yearned for. He may have been an outlaw and a murderer, but make no mistake – that isn’t the reason Prince has to die at the end of the film.

But it gets Even Better.  3:10 to Yuma is a remake of a 1957 film starring Glenn Ford as Wade, Van Heflin as Evans and Richard Jaeckel as Prince.  And in That prior version of the story, there was no gay subtext.  None.

In the original movie, Prince is played by character actor Richard Jaeckel (The Dirty Dozen, Starman). At no point is his character called “missy” or referred to as "Charlie Princess". In the saloon scene where Wade flirts with Emmy, Prince also spends time talking with her. Nor is it made to seem that Prince is pining over his boss, jealous over the attention he gives to others. At one point, he even discusses his having a wife.

One thing does remain the same in both movies: Prince dies in each, but in the 1957 version it’s at the hands of Evans, not Wade. Thus there is no message sent that Prince is being punished for his “queer” transgressions against Wade (which aren’t even present).

Dig it.  Less then two years after Brokeback Mountain, about the lead time for these major Hollywood films, we have the loathsome faggot character back front and center in the Hollywood’s toolkit, dying horribly so the film’s star can avenge his heterosexual manhood.  Teenage boys and young men will leave the theaters where this film is playing, knowing that real men pump faggots who have a crush on them full of lead.  And James Mangold, like every other gutter crawling maggot willing to exploit the anti-gay fear and loathing of their young male audience for a buck, gets a little richer, thanks in part to the labors of all the gay people they personally know who work in Hollywood.

See how groundbreaking Brokeback Mountain was?  Oh look…John Wayne isn’t rolling in his grave anymore…

[Edited a tad…] 

by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

August 29th, 2007

Getting Your Comfortable Conceits Blown Away Usually Is A Tad Shocking…Yes…

Via Queerty (Free of an agenda, except that gay one…).  Here’s a bit of a CNN transcript of an interview with Kyra Phillips and an Atlanta vice officer named Darryl Tolleson, on the Larry Craig thing, and what its like to patrol the toilet beat…

Phillips: And tell me about the type of people that you arrested. I mean, give – can you tell me – well, first of all, let me ask you, have you arrested anyone that is well known like a politician or someone of famous stature?

Tolleson: No, I wouldn’t say that. But we have arrested certainly some high-profile people. It ranged from CEOs, bank presidents…

Phillips: Oh, my gosh.

Tolleson: …professors, college professors. So, it really runs the gamut as far as who we actually apprehend and who has been involved in this in the past.

Phillips: Are they gay? Are all of them gay?

Tolleson: I can’t say. I can only tell you that a good majority of these men do have families. And that’s been a little bit shocking to us. You would think that it would be more of a gay issue. But overwhelmingly more and more we’re seeing that these are people with families.

(Emphasis mine) This is pretty much what a friend of mine, Jon Larimore who once ran the Gay And Lesbian Information Bureau BBS System back in the mid 80s to late 90s experienced.  I did volunteer work on the BBS, which was created to be a news and information resource for the local gay community.  It was funded by the non-profit Community Educational Services Foundation.  Jon told me many times that he would get calls on the GLIB support phone line, late at night usually, from men who had just been arrested in a cruising zone, usually a men’s room that had been staked out by the cops, and were franticly looking for legal advice and support.  Jon told me that almost without exception these were deeply closeted men who were terrified of their wives and/or families finding out.

It didn’t surprise me then, and it shouldn’t surprise anyone now.  Even back in the 80s, before the Internet came along (and wiped out all the BBS systems), many of us who were out and comfortable with our sexual selves had already lived lives where we never felt compelled to journey into that pit.  We had a burgeoning social scene, at least in the D.C. area, that was better then the seedy mafia run bars that were all gay folk had back in the early 60s, where we could meet other out and about gay folk.  If all you wanted was sex, there was the bar scene where you could cruise to your hearts content, and sex clubs you could go to if you just wanted to dispense with the formalities.  Even back then the tea room scene was almost exclusively populated by deeply closeted types who couldn’t imagine themselves being seen in going into a gay bar…and the kind who are turned on by the thrill of risk.

For those of us with a more Disney-esq yearning for romance and finding that soulmate to put your arms around, it wasn’t exactly the best of times, but it was light years away from the worst.  And you could see a better place coming down the road as long as gay people kept fighting for the right to just be ourselves, openly, proudly.  I stayed well away from the sex clubs, visited the bars infrequently, and mostly socialized online, and at parties and G.L.I.B. happy hours downtown with my fellow gay geeks.  But I knew from hearing the stories, what was going on with the guys who frequented mens rooms.  At least one vice cop is willing to acknowledge what his own experience is telling him.  Which I guess is a good thing.  But they should all know this by now.

by Bruce | Link | React!

August 28th, 2007

If Only You Didn’t Hate Us So Much…If Only You Could Just Not Hate Us Quite So Very Much…

Well you had to know this was coming.  ABC News, the network that whitewashed the murder of Matthew Shepard, smearing a murdered gay kid as a meth addict who probably had sex with at least one of his killers, ABC News now tells us that the problem with Larry Craig isn’t so much that he was cruising for sex in toilets all the while promoting himself as a Family Values man, but that he was gay…and That’s What Gays Do…

Secret Signals: How Gay Men Cruise for Sex
When Men Cruise for Sex in Public Places, Police Take Notice and Gays Say It’s Unfair

Dig the headlines here.  It’s the 1950s all over again as far as how ABC views the gay community.  We’re all sex crazed perverts sulking around public toilets…

Public places like men’s restrooms, in airports and train stations, truck stops, university libraries and parks, have long been places where gay and bisexual men, particularly those in the closet, congregate in order to meet for anonymous sex.

Over time, people familiar with cruising told, gay men began using a codified system of signals to indicate to others that they were interested in sex. In an effort to curb lewd acts in public — or as some gays argue, in an effort to persecute gay men — undercover police began sting operations in places known for sex soliciting and employed the same codes.

You have to read to the very end of the article before you get to this, sorta-kinda acknowledgment that this is a behavior characteristic more of the closet, then of gay people as a whole…

With many other options available for gay men to meet each other, Gershen Kaufman, a professor emeritus of psychology at Michigan State University and author of the book "Coming Out of Shame," said public cruising is practiced mainly by deeply closeted men.

"Cruisers are not sex offenders. They are deeply, deeply closeted. There is a lot of self-hatred and shame and they can’t allow themselves to come to terms with their sexuality.

The fact is that anonymous cruising areas are an artifact of the persecution gay people faced daily before Stonewall, when gay bars were routinely raided by the police, their customers rounded up like cattle and herded into paddy wagons, their names and addresses printed in the newspapers the following day.  Back in those days you could loose your job, the roof over your head, be expelled from college or dismissed from a jobs program, be denied or have a professional license revoked, and be put on a sex offenders registry and be required to report any change of residence to the police…simply for being gay.  This is why back then, many gay people gravitated to places where they could have sex anonymously: because being identified as a homosexual could have devastating consequences.  Anonymous sex was seen as a safe outlet. 

Back in the 50s, heterosexual sexuality had to conform to the nuclear family ideal, and gay sexuality was forced by fear and prejudice into a pattern of brief barren encounters.  When the sexual revolution came along, heterosexuals broke free of the stifling conformity of the 50s, and felt free to explore their sexuality and find their own places of sexual joy and fulfillment on their own terms.  I think a lot of gay people, seeing heterosexuals suddenly discovering the joys of sex for its own sake, mistook the culture of anonymous sex they’d been forced into for generations for a kind of liberation too.  Well look at us…we were sexual pioneers all along and we didn’t even know it…  No…we were outcasts, driven into the gutter by prejudice and hate. 

While it may have seemed superficially back in the brutal 1950s that gays were having sex for its own sake, the fact was that we were a people whose sexuality was being brutally stifled.  Gay people had sex in back alleys and parks and toilets back then, not because we were sexual pioneers way before the swinging 60s, but because the sex drive isn’t something that you can stifle in a mammal, let alone a primate, let alone a human being, for very long.  It had to come out somewhere, and if that wasn’t in the normal human course of dating and mating, then it was going to be in quick, desperate assignations, because an instinct older then the fish was going to drive us, some how, some way, toward some sort of sexual joining, no matter how much fear and self loathing the culture managed to cram into our heads…and our hearts.

Sexual freedom was good for heterosexuals, and it was good for us too.  But I think, especially in the years right after Stonewall, that a lot of gay people mistook the tea rooms for a liberation that we already had.  No.  It was repression.  We are not a free people, if anonymous random hooking up is the only choice we are allowed.  I get…trust me I get the fact…that there are gay people who feel that cruising for anonymous sex is liberation and getting married and settling down is a kind of sexual selling out.  It’s bullshit.  Anonymous sex is fine, whether you’re gay or straight, if that’s your sexual temperament.  Not everyone is emotionally equipped for relationships, let alone monogamy.  Fine.  What was good about the sexual revolution, was that it gave our bodies and our libidos back to us.  As long as people are decent to one another, to paraphrase Jefferson, it neither picks my pockets nor breaks my legs if the sex they’re having is not the sort of sex I would want to have myself.  But we’re not all into that by any means, and if sexual freedom for heterosexuals meant that they could have all the casual sex they want, then it has to also mean that gay people can do the dating and mating thing if that’s what they want.

And that’s what’s been happening for the past couple decades, although you’d never know it to listen to ABC News.  Gay couples have in a sense, and literally, been moving into the suburbs.  They’ve been getting married.  They’ve been settling down.  Gay kids are playing the dating and mating game now, just like their heterosexual peers.  Gay neighborhoods have coffee shops, grocery stores, boutiques, same sex couples walking their dogs, chatting about the weather, bellyaching about taxes and city services.  The cruising zones have given way to online dating services.

I can see, in a really perverse way, how some gay men might think that holding on to toilet stall sex amounts to preserving some kind of gay cultural legacy.  But it’s a legacy of repression and persecution, the verdict of bigots, not merely on our sexuality, but on our very hearts and souls.  Homosexuals are filth…  No.  We are human beings.   The men having toilet stall sex these days are almost exclusively deeply closeted people who are full of the fear and self loathing nearly everyone had back before Stonewall…back before Hooker’s study, and the APA removing homosexuality from its list of mental diseases…back when we almost all believed that we were sick, like everyone said we were…back when we hated ourselves. 

"If only we didn’t hate ourselves so much…if only we could just not hate ourselves quite so very much…"
-Michael, The Boys In The Band

The fact that this kind of thing is still going on is proof that as far as we’ve come as a people, we still have a long way to go before we’re truly free.  And if the likes of the republican party and their mouthpieces like ABC News have their way of course, we never will be.  The problem wasn’t that we hated ourselves.  The problem was never that we hated ourselves.  To hate yourself is not the human condition.  We were taught to hate ourselves.  Because so many others hated us, and could never endure seeing us happy, contented, proud, and least of all…loved.  What ABC News is trying to do here, is rekindle that hatred.  So the day can come again when we can be taught to hate ourselves once more.  So that one day we may once again come to believe that our sexuality, that our love lives, that we, belong in the sewer.

by Bruce | Link | React!

May 1st, 2007

An Ad I’ll Happily Run Here Free Of Charge…

Via Good As You… This ad apparently aired during an episode of the NBC TV show Heros last night. It’s a richly deserved dig at the eHarmony dating service, which doesn’t allow same-sex pairings. A business that makes its living selling folks the joys of love and romance while peddling cheapshit bigotry out the side door, probably isn’t all that serious about the love and romance it’s dealing out the front door either.

I hope it makes Lou Sheldon break out in hives…

by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

April 6th, 2007

The Faggot Always Has It Coming…Just Ask Elizabeth Vargas

So…here’s the scenario.  A young gay man is found brutally murdered.  The murder scene shows the classic evidence of overkill.  The killers, leaving behind not only a host of physical evidence, but statements to friends about how they’d just "killed a faggot", are quickly apprehended.  Then as news of the vicious murder percolates, first  through the gay community news channels, and then, somehow, manages to find its way into the  consciousness of the nation at large, and people recoil at the senseless brutality of it, we begin to hear that the gay victim of the crime had been out cruising for sex, or was looking for drugs, or some sort of criminal activity, had gone willingly with his killers, who by then look in their newspaper perp walk photos like they had "I Kill Faggots" tattooed on their foreheads…and you can almost hear the sigh of relief from one end of the country to the other…because now we know it wasn’t really hate that killed the victim, there is no hate in America, and especially not any systematic hatred directed at homosexuals…it’s their own stupidity after all, that keeps getting them killed…

Typical faggot…out cruising for anonymous sex…or drugs…gets himself killed by a couple of street punks…nothing here for the rest of us to worry about…

Sound familiar?  Matthew Shepard?   No…

Official Misstatements about Ryan Skipper’s Murder Have Been Propagated in the Media

One of the saddest aspects about the aftermath of Ryan Skipper’s murder is that no one outside his friends and family seems to care about the heinous manner in which he was killed.

Neither the governor nor the attorney general in Florida — both of whom are Republicans — has expressed concern about the fact that Skipper’s murder has been labeled a hate crime. National gay organizations have been largely mute, and coverage in the local and national gay press has been very slim, especially considering the brutality of his murder.

Sheriff’s Assertions Were Based on Killers’ Statements

It is likely that the lack of outrage stems from a series of misstatements to the media at the outset of the investigation that have been attributed to Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd and others in his office. One the face of it, the motivation for making these statements appears to be bigotry toward gay people.

On Friday, March 16, two days after Skipper’s body was discovered, the local newspaper, The Ledger, reported:

Skipper, 25, was driving around Eloise late Tuesday night looking to pick up someone when he met [his all edged killer, Joseph] Bearden, whom he took back to his home in Winter Haven, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The next day, the paper ran a quote from Sheriff Judd that sounded like it could have been the basis of the earlier reporting:

“What we do know is that Ryan was out looking to pick up someone that evening,” Judd said.

Elsewhere, the full quote has been given as:

“What we do know is that Ryan was looking for someone to pick up that evening. And unfortunately for Ryan, he picked up the wrong person.” [Emphasis added.]

In fact — and as we have said in other coverage of this story — Sheriff Judd did not “know” this. It was immediately obvious to my colleague Trish, who reported the story here on March 18, that, since the victim was dead and could not speak for himself, the only source for this information had to have been the alleged killers.

But the slander against Ryan Skipper did not stop there. In its coverage on March 17, The Ledger published the trawling-for-sex allegation as well as three additional completely unsubstantiated statements:

[1] Skipper was driving around Wahneta on Tuesday night when he found [murder suspect Joe] Bearden walking along Sixth Street in Eloise about 11 p.m. Tuesday, and offered him a ride. [2] The two went back to Skipper’s house, where they [3] smoked marijuana and [4] discussed using Skipper’s [laptop] computer to copy checks, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Three weeks later all four of these statements are in dispute:

  • No one who knew Ryan Skipper believes he had a propensity for trawling for anonymous sex.
  • The other alleged murderers, William Brown, was an acquaintance of Skipper’s. We have seen a statement from one of Ryan’s roommates that Ryan got a call after he got home from work at 10:30 that night, which appeared to have prompted him to go back out. It seems more likely that Brown phoned Ryan and asked for help in the form of giving him ride somewhere, and that the call was part of premeditated ambush plot by Brown and Bearden against Ryan.
  • No evidence has been produced that Ryan was involved with these chuckleheads in a check forgery scheme — and no one who knew him believes he would do anything of the sort.
  • Ryan’s roommate has said that after Ryan received the phone call, he left and never came back. She denies that he brought anyone home with him that night.
  • Ryan’s friends and family all confirm that he had a desktop computer but did not own a laptop. And yet, early reports stated that Brown and Bearden were charged with stealing a laptop from Ryan after they murdered him..
  • No one who knew him believes Ryan smoked pot.

That the "trawling for sex" story is so reaily accepted by the mainstream news media when it comes to gay victims of violent crime, Even When The Source Of The Story Is The Victim’s Own Killers, is all the proof you need that there is a climate of contempt toward gays right here in America, that is relentlessly fueling that violence.  No climate of hate in America?  Compare and contrast…a white jogger is raped and nearly killed in New York’s Central Park and the focus slams immediately on a gaggle of black teenagers who were said to be out "wilding" that night.  Nobody suggests the woman was out looking for rough sex.  Had that woman been a gay man instead, does anyone seriously believe that the Very First Thing out the gate in the mainstream press wouldn’t be that he was probably there looking for sex.

Ryan Skipper walks out the door to his apartment and is found dead hours later with 20 stab wounds in his body, and his car is found later with the insides soaked in his blood.  The killers are arrested, claim their victim was hitting them up for sex and anyway he was helping them forge checks.  It’s just their word at that point, but guess what the Accepted Narrative is the following day…

“What we do know is that Ryan was looking for someone to pick up that evening. And unfortunately for Ryan, he picked up the wrong person.”

And we know that how precisely?  We know it, because his killers said so, and because he was a gay man, and gay men always do something stupid to cause their own deaths…just ask Elizabeth Vargas and ABC News

O’Malley was a detective with the Laramie Police when 21-year-old Matthew Shepard was brutally murdered six years ago.

He was one of several people interviewed for ABC’s 20/20 that aired Nov. 26. He said that the interview and the way the show was ultimately put together has left him angry.

O’Malley was notified about a week in advance of the ABC crew’s arrival for the interview. He invited them into his home and they stayed for “maybe three to four hours.”

He did not see the tape until the night the show aired.

The people interviewed for the show did not surprise him. He was, however, surprised that “a production as popular as 20/20 would hinge all of their support for their theory on meth addicts, Doc O’Connor and two convicted murderers … it did not surprise me the way the thing came out.”

O’Malley said that he did find out what the focus of the show was shortly after the interview was over and the crew left Laramie. Someone with the crew had left copies of e-mails on his dining room table — 10 pages of information discussing the overall focus of the program and “their pre-conceived focus that this was not a hate crime. This was a drug crime. That’s what they went with,” he said.

When he was approached by the producers of this particular segment, O’Malley said he had a weird feeling. “After 30 years, you learn to trust your gut instinct. I asked them specifically if they were coming to do something from a particular angle … I wanted to be able to answer intelligently, think things out.”

In the conversation with the producers, O’Malley was assured that the report would be objective, six years after the actual event.


Prior to the arrival of the 20/20 crew, he had heard that the show might be more about the methamphetamine issue. When they arrived at his home, O’Malley asked a few questions of his own.

“I was trying to be comfortable … and I felt comfortable. But when Elizabeth Vargas got into the methamphetamine portion of it, it surprised me,” he said. “Actually, it made me extremely angry and, in my opinion, these guys lied to me.”

During the segment of the 20/20 program, O’Malley said that he believed that Aaron McKinney and Russell Henderson, the two Laramie men convicted in Shepard’s death, intended to rob the University of Wyoming student. But, for reasons only McKinney and Henderson know, something happened and the killing became a hate crime based on Shepard’s sexual orientation.

“My feelings have been that the initial contact was probably motivated by robbery because they needed money,” O’Malley said. “What they got was $20 and a pair of shoes. … then something changed and changed profoundly.”

But whatever that was, it couldn’t be hate.  No.  Never.

20/20 did not discuss the expertise of the arresting officer.

“Flint Waters is a trained narcotics officer. … in controlled substances,” O’Malley said.

Waters reported that Henderson exhibited no signs of being under the influence of meth, just an odor of alcohol.

O’Malley said that 20/20 failed to report on the jailhouse letters that McKinney had written — letters that added information that this could have been a gay-hate crime.

The 20/20 segment with McKinney indicated that he, along with his lawyers, had concocted this gay panic issue, but, according to O’Malley, police interviews with McKinney showed that he had already started that (the gay panic issue) without the benefit of council.

“The statements he made, the fact that after he was sentenced he was high-fiving other inmates and signing autographs in the jail — if it wasn’t motivated by bias, he was sure eating that up.” O’Malley said.

Shepard was struck between 19 and 21 times, all to the face and head area.

“It was a concentrated effort to destroy somebody,” O’Malley said. “I believe it was triggered because Matt was gay. I’ll go to my grave believing that.”

O’Malley said that “It is abysmal that they (20/20) don’t present the other side of the issue … to be objective in their reporting.”

But they had a job to do…not merely to whitewash the murder of Matthew Shepard, but more importantly, to undermine the fight against anti-gay hate.  The problem for ABC New and other Bush/Republican Friendly mainstream news media outlets, is that for the nation to finally begin to combat the kind of hate that killed Matthew Shepard means taking away one of the republicans better vote getting tools…


So Matthew Shepard’s murder, against all the evidence to the contrary, had to be a drug deal gone bad, and Shepard a druggy, or trawling for sex, or something.  And the payoff wasn’t just hope that his killers might be paroled, but breathing life into the cultural indifference to anti-gay violence, which at that moment in time was seriously in jeopardy of, finally, being taken seriously for the unmitigated horror that it is.  It’s not so much about the gay panic defense, as the gay panic vote.  You can’t drive voters to the polls with the gay bogeyman, without getting some gay people killed in the process.  It has to be their own damn fault they got themselves killed, not the climate of hate.  Never the climate of hate.

Typical faggot…out cruising for anonymous sex…or drugs…gets himself killed by a couple of street punks…nothing here for the rest of us to worry about…

“What we do know is that Ryan was looking for someone to pick up that evening. And unfortunately for Ryan, he picked up the wrong person.”

So ABC and Vargas’ did their job and you can see the results of it now, in the case of Ryan Skipper with sickening clarity. The meme that gay victims of violent crime always, somehow, bring it on themselves, were idiots who should have seen it coming, went cruising for guys who have "I Kill Faggots" tattooed on their foreheads, fell prey to a kind of crime that the rest of us need not worry about, because We’re Smart And We Don’t Do Things Like That, will probably live on for quite some time to come. Hate crime laws are unnecessary, because the victims of these kinds of crimes are always stupid. There is no epidemic of violence against gay people, just an epidemic of stupidity. You are now free to look the other way. Pay no attention to that blood on the floor…it doesn’t concern you…

by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

February 22nd, 2007

Couldn’t You At Least Have Offered A Moneyback Guarantee?

…and…a blender?

Here’s Peterson Toscano and Lance Carroll on the Montel Williams show, briefly discussing how they came to find themselves in reparative therapy. Two things are worth noting here: Peterson went in of his own free will, while Lance was forced into it by his parents. Peterson left of his own accord, finally accepting himself just as he was, and remained very close to both his parents. Lance is now estranged from both of his. 

This conversation is all too brief, but I guess that’s the format of the Montel Williams show, to flit from one topic to another to another during the course of an hour. Someone should sit those two down together for a long talk on camera where they can talk about their experiences in more depth, how it felt, what it did to them, what their lives are like now: the one who went in of his own accord out of devotion to God, and the one who was forced in against his will.


And here’s a clip from a Boston Legal episode about a man suing his ex-gay ministry. Great line at the end…

John…are you reading this? Have you given Lance’s parents back their money yet? Bring families together do you? Ever tell Lance you’re sorry? Ever find where you buried your conscience? You had one once…didn’t you? Do you remember what it was like…way back then…to have a conscience…?

by Bruce | Link | React! (1)

February 20th, 2007

This Is Either Good News For Gay Listeners, Or Very Bad News…

My first thought upon hearing this was, Okay…what happens to OutQ…?

To: SIRIUS Subscribers

Today is a very exciting day for SIRIUS customers. As you may have heard, SIRIUS Satellite Radio and XM Satellite Radio are merging to form the nation’s premier audio entertainment provider.

This combination of our two offerings will benefit you – our loyal listeners. As a single company, we’ll provide superior programming to you every day with the best of both SIRIUS and XM. Currently, XM and SIRIUS broadcast a wide range of commercial-free music channels, exclusive sports coverage, news, talk, and entertainment programming. Howard Stern. Oprah and Friends. The NFL. MLB. NBA. ESPN. CNBC. Fox News. Additionally, the combined company will be able to improve existing services such as real-time traffic information and rear-seat video as well as introduce new ones.

You see what’s missing from that list.  No, no…  Not just OutQ, but any indication that they’ve been providing something for people to listen to, who are sick and tired of all the right wing pap being broadcast out there, posturing as non-partisan news and information.  Fox News?  They tell us about Fox News (sic) and not Talk Left?  But Clear Channel owns a major stake in XM.

I have a Honda Accord, and since it came with a factory installed XM radio, the first thing I did was bellyache to XM about their lack of a gay channel like Sirius had.  I could have been shouting my complaints up at one of their satellites for all it mattered.  So shortly after I bought the Accord I yanked the factory radio out and spent $180 plus the cost of a new radio plus the cost of installation so I could listen to OutQ on Sirius.  

At the time Sirius had two other channels going for it that XM didn’t:  Swing Street and Air America.  But then Air America defected to XM and Sirius dropped Swing Street when they picked up Howard Stern, merging it’s programming into the god awful American Standards channel, which I think they call the Old Fart’s Channel internally.  Now it’s a sickening combination of big band swing and 1950s lounge music and I hate it. 

The Trance channel is now more a electro-pop channel except some evenings when it gets back to being hard core trance.  The only thing that hasn’t changed for the worse since I subscribed to Sirius is OutQ.  Well…and the 60s channel and the New Age channel (elevator music for my generation).  Basically I’m paying their subscription fees now just to listen to Michelangelo Signorile and Sunset Cruse and a couple other channels I wouldn’t have yanked the old radio out for since XM carried them too.  Actually, XM’s 40s channel is much better then Sirius’ god awful American Standards channel.

For me the promise satellite radio wasn’t so much that you could drive from one end of the country to the other without having to constantly retune your radio all the way, but that niche content that wasn’t profitable regionally, could work on a national scale.  Radio that actually spoke to gay audiences only happened in some large cities, and then only for a few hours at week at most.  But with the ability to reach the entire country from a satellite, my hope was that we’d finally have something that regarded us as its primary target audience, instead of "oh…yeah…and you gays too."

Ironically, there’s not a lot I actually like on OutQ.  Derek & Romaine are way too crude for my liking.  I just won’t listen to that.  OutQ in the Morning is almost as bad sometimes.  But I can forgive any gay channel that kind of crap that broadcasts Signorile and Sunset Cruse.  Especially Sunset Cruse…which is a lovely gay dedicate-a-song-to-your-sweetheart program.  I just love it.  After a long week of reading about one goddamned attack on the gay community after another in the news, Sunset Cruse is just the thing I need to remind me that love still has a chance in this world.

My fear right now in this proposed merger is that all that will simply vanish just like my Swing Channel did when either the bean counters decide it isn’t pulling in enough listeners, or the stock block that belongs to Clear Channel (they own a major stake in XM), decides they don’t want any of that faggot stuff on their airwaves.  The reason competition is a good thing isn’t to drive down prices, but to encourage producers to exploit markets their competition isn’t, and to keep the top dogs responsive to All their customers.

by Bruce | Link | React!

January 22nd, 2007

A Question

I’m reading about the big blow-up at ABC over Isaiah Washington’s insults to fellow Grey’s Anatomy actor T. R. Knight.  Knight is gay and Washington called him a faggot on the set.  Then during the Golden Globe award ceremonies Washington announced to all the assembled reporters that he’d never called Knight a faggot.  You have to admit, the guy has a certain deft charm when it comes to his co-workers.  Seems like now everyone is calling for Washington’s head…

Anatomy of an Insult: ABC Is Stung by an Actor’s Anti-Gay Slurs

LOS ANGELES, Jan. 21 — Executives at ABC and its parent, Disney, are mulling the future of the actor Isaiah Washington, a star of the hit series “Grey’s Anatomy,” after Mr. Washington last week publicly used an anti-gay slur for the second time in roughly three months, a Disney executive said Friday.

The executive, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because company officials were instructed not to go beyond a prepared statement, said that Mr. Washington’s behavior could be considered grounds for dismissal under Disney’s corporate antidiscrimination policy.

ABC and Touchstone, Disney’s television studio, called Mr. Washington’s behavior “unacceptable” in a statement issued on Thursday, three days after Mr. Washington’s most recent remark, which occurred in the backstage press room at the Golden Globes ceremony last week.

Unacceptable.  Unacceptable.  I have a question.  Why is Mr. Washington’s calling Mr. Knight a faggot unacceptable to ABC, but not whitewashing the murder of Matthew Shepard by 20/20?

Ah…here’s why…

The situation has potentially great implications for ABC, which is reaping millions of dollars in advertising revenues from a show that, in its third season, is among the highest rated on television.

If you piss on the grave of a dead gay kid and it gooses your tabloid news show’s ratings…that’s good business.  But if a fag baiting actor’s antics start cutting into your multi-million dollar profits on your high rated prime time TV series…well, that’s just plain unacceptable. 

And…by the way…I hear the right wing shock jocks at ABC/Disney’s San Francisco talk radio station who called Barack Obama a "halfrican" still have their jobs. 

by Bruce | Link | React! (2)

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