Saturday, April 1st, 2023

LGBT history and journalism

Billy GloverAugust 20, 2008.

I have been looking at journalists and the media since about 1960. And I have yet to find the journalists as a group or individually doing even a minimally good job of covering most aspects of homosexuality as they have done about Britney, or gay marriage, and now seem to be doing on trans issues, so as to compensate for their failure to attack or criticize the HRC, etc.

Because of shouting by a small segment of the population, they mostly have ignored the major issues we have faced.

They ignored Don Slater, continue to never mention ONE, Incorporated, which was the largest organization, and for some time created the only national homosexual publication, because of two things — ONE magazine did not fit the popular stereotype of “gay,” and we were not young and cute and they didn’t agree with our positions.

Hal Call was attacked for going into porn, but we got no support for not gong into porn. We picketed the Los Angeles Times and were ignored — except that the paper then changed its policy which is what we wanted. And there was our 1965 Motorcade, even though for once the New York Times actually did a good article — written by Peter Bart, now in Hollywood at Variety I think — but no one else did, not even the gay media.

Don Slater was doing the military issue long before anyone else. He was in court and won cases even though the policies didn’t always change. But Slater’s work was ignored, except for a brief mention, mostly in error in Randy Shilts’ book. I was on Regis Philbin’s TV talk show on the issue, and he was rude and there was no coverage of this in the media, as there was no coverage of Harry Hay and John Burnside’s appearance on other TV shows.

There has been silence on the few books that actually try to cover our history, such as the book Vern Bullough edited, of short bios of pioneers, Before Stonewall, and Paul Cain’s interviews in Leading The Parade. Most other books are East Coast oriented.

Show me one article in any LGBT publication, by any LGBT journalist on the LGBT libraries/archives.

As I understand it, one of the two men whose legal case got rid of the sodomy laws (Lawrence v. Texas) died in Houston, ignored and unhonored. Now I want LGBT publications to sell. But how many covers and long articles can we have on non-gay celebrities while we ignore the people who have done the work that changed this nation for homosexual citizens?

Do young homosexual men and women ever hear of actual homosexuals who have worked for change? Instead they are given as “inspirationals” young, cute girls and boys who know nothing on the subject, who do nothing for the cause but look good.

Who is working to try to get academia to use homosexual educators who know the subject and should be teaching classes instead of some hacks who just are handed the course to fill a pc duty to say they have “done” the gay thing? Why are universities allowed to give their students less than the best education on this subject?

I gather there is a convention of LGBT journalists meeting as I write. Whom are they hearing from? Is Frank Kameny being heard? Who is speaking for our cause?

What we will hear are attacks on HRC by transexuals who came out of the closet (if they have) a year or so ago and have done nothing on their own but want to become leaders and take over existing LGBT organizations instead of taking time to learn about life.

Or we will hear from Ellen and Elton. As if they can give much insight as to how to live as an average homosexual. And as if they actually did much work to change laws and attitudes.

I wait to hear some coverage of people and groups in our community/movement that are daily working yet are never heard from yet are the ones who actually are making the changes.


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