Thursday, August 26, 2010

Why the Homosexual Information Center, like ONE Magazine, is Don Slater's gift to the community/movement

The main reason to get our material online is that it is the work and thinking of Don Slater. Anyone who doesn't care to hear what those who founded this civil rights movement thought and did in the early days -that actually set the course it has taken- can ignore us, but our job is to at least put the material there for the few who seek to understand something that changed the course of their lives and the nation. They will not get it anywhere else.

It may not seem relevant, since in a few of the Newsletters I am going to mention the people and events are not well known-then or now, but the issue and thinking was relevant then and now.

It is interesting to see what co-workers thought of some of the founders. Such as Dale Jennings' thoughts, on the Stuart Timmons' book on Harry Hay (The Trouble With harry Hay). Actually what Dale thought was bad, is good from my view and the view of history. He says Stuart missed the most important single element of Harry. "That is Harry's complete inability to bend, adapt, and change." Yet he then immediately answers his own charge. "It is a flaw that always marks the end of an evolutionary strain." That is not true, Harry kept going and affecting us till the day he died. Dale is thinking about Radical Faeries, and thinks they were/are silly. I don't think history has said that yet.

What Harry could say is that Dale, after leaving ONE, Inc and the magazine, after co-founding it as he did early Mattachine, dropped out of the movement for years. He did, as HIC now benefits from, write The Cowboys, the movie John Wayne acted in. But anyone studying Harry needs to read the Newsletter that has Dale's views of harry and the book.

Waht many young eager "gays" did not like in the hippie generation was don's rejection of the efforts of Gay lib. He thought they were too leftist politically and thus harmed the movement. then add his thoughts on the misuse of the word gay, "Although homosexual is not a dirty word gay was substituted in its place. this made those who didn't like the sex in homosexual a lot more comfortable with themselves. But using gay as a euphemism for homosexual deprives us not only of two honest words, but what they stand for too....In going from an adjective describing a merry mood enjoyed by everyone to a noun labeling a people separated sexually from the rest of the population the word gay produced a new social order."

This was relevant to Don's thinking of homosexuals in the military. He discussed the Perry Watkins case. He says what we say today, "What Watkins really needed to say is that none of this in anybody's business....But he was proud to be gay. It didn't occur to him that his right to privacy had been compromised. Like the army, he was convinced that his homosexuality was significant."...In the first place, sexual orientation has no constitutional status. It is anomalous, and, at bottom, impossible to protect people on the basis of something of which the legal and psychological relevance is yet to be determined. Sexual orientation is too amorphous, too flexible and diverse -if it has any meaning or bearing at all-to prescribe as a judicial cure. If the minority of persons who submit to the homosexual stereotype are given constitutional protection on this basis, what happens to the rights of the majority of persons who enjoy the exact same sexual outlets but do not recognize, identify with, or live by its limitations?" Who has heard such thinking?

But what did Don say about Stonewall? (Newsletter #21, 1/72) He refers t the movement as a movement of free minds, diverse and the sexaul revolution of which the homosexual movement was the catalyst and still is the vanguard has made astonishing progress in two decades.

"In June of 1969, there occurred the event of the Stonewall Uprising. It was a defensive reaction by a group of jaded, role-playing bar queens who had rejected society in favor of visions of their own private gay world. The struggle at the Stonewall was a momentary, unplanned confrontation between the emotionally immature, self-ashamed patrons of a gay club, on Christopher Street in New York City, and the police. for those homosexuals who live and act out a gay role, reason and logic have always been the devil's instruments, inhibiting their total, spontaneous, unstructured response to what is happening. The action of this bizarre element of New york's gay population was held up to glorification by latent liberationists as the first attempt of homosexuals to wage heroic struggle against police oppression. It was the signal for other guilt-ridden homosexuals to come out of their closets. They could finally relate. The incident came to symbolize gay power, gay militancy,and ironically, gay liberation. The anniversary of the Uprising has been twice celebrated when the followers of gay revivalism on both coasts gathered to conduct elaborate rites of self-deliverance.

"To the 'children of christopher Street' the actions of earlier homosexual groups looked like efforts at quiet accommodation with a fundamentally hostile society. They blamed the government and the law for their personal unhappiness. Their frame of mind was easily made a political tool. They were especially susceptible to the ideology of the New left. The main thing the New left has been saying is that the United States is intrinsically evil, and repressive in its treatment of Negroes and Mexicans and other minorities, and that the Indochina war is an immoral imperialistic aggression. The ideas And attitudes of the New left were absorbed into the mainstream of gay liberation thought. The Gay liberation Front became the left insurgency of the national homosexual movement."

"Homosexuals who had been in hiding and who for one reason or another despised themselves-like a stream of pentecostal witnesses-appeared to confess their guilt and affirm their salvation-and then to excoriate the 'pre-revolutionary' homosexual leaders who persisted in contending that homosexuals should not be organized into an anabaptist sect and that the 'concern of the movement' as the Mattachine founders had perceived, 'is the problems of sexual variation.'

There are plenty of sexual revolutionaries (maybe the majority) who firmly believe that the United States is one of the least repressive societies in human history, that the war in Indochina is not immoral and imperialistic, and that war related research is not necessarily wicked. Differing views on these questions need have no quarrel with each other as far as the homosexual movement is concerned. They are issues utterly irrelevant to sexual freedom. What is important is that the individual should be able to survive in the movement, and retain his own mind, manners and political beliefs and not be drawn off into the visionary gay world of the 'Children of Christopher Street.

(This last line explains my thinking about dealing with Wayne and russell, et al.)

I will not quote Number 26 (9/73) but thoughts on the fire in the gay bar in New Orleans was not that of the majority, to put it mildly.

How about his view of the Advocate (newsletter #29 (5/75) Steve Ginsberg (where is he) sold the remains of PRIDE to Dick Michaels for about $300, who ran it like a banker, covering Troy Perry and exploiting gay bar fires (Don says that most of the money raised for victims of the fire did NOT get to them but was spent by those raising the funds) and having lucrative personal ads. He carefully excluded those items he thought would not sell papers and also people he didn't like.

He then sold it to David Goldstein for a lot more money, who did not change much. Not a good thing.

Then Don takes on Dave Glascock, again, were is he. He questioned his qualifications to speak for the community as staff member for Supervisor Ed Edelman. "When Glascock first drifted into L A., like most ideological hustlers he started looking around for a little honest graft. The unstructured homosexual movement was like a sitting duck, and as an opportunity to enhance his personal fortunes it beat selling corn salve." He got coverage with his picture in the Advocate by marrying a Selma St hustler, performed by Troy.

(Is Obama making any wiser choices in deciding who can give info on our community/movement?)

We put out a newsletter explain why we didn't work with the county on vd issues-we didnt' trust them, but the new Gay & Lesbian Center did, got lots of money.

We reviewed books-Newsletter #31 said the book by Howard Brown (Familiar Faces, hidden Lives) was nonsense merely saying Dr. Brown thought he was the most famous queer in America because he was a professional and came out, finally. "After i came out publicly, I became the most prominent self-confessed homosexual in America, partly because i was a member of a profession regarded as a citadel of respectability."

Newsletter #41 (Spring 1990) was a symposium on outing, with Martin Block, John Burnside, Harry Hay, Morris Kight, Stuart Timmons and Don Slater.

And we put out an announcement when we hosted discussions after performances of the play The Geese, at the Coronet Theater. (This was the cause of picketing the Los Angeles Times (over refusal of an ad), where Troy Perry got lucky and his interview by John Dart went nationwide.) Co-hosts included Dr. Irene Kassorla, Joe Hansen (as James Colton), Gale Whittington (Committee for Homosexual Freedom, S. f.), Dr. Fred Goldstein, Morris Kight, Herb Selwyn, and Don Slater.

None of this would have happened without Don, and Los Angeles heard him, on tv, radio and in newspaper articles. It is hard to say how many people heard, saw and read him, but it would be foolish to deny that his views were heard and are alive today. The magazines need to be seen and read. The glbt journalists, historians, professionals today should know this person and what he said, even if they reject his thinking.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Link to Alternet article saying early Christians accepted same sex marriage in today's post

I find the best argument for getting same sex marriage in the comments added to the linked-article saying that there are "pictures' of two maile saints getting married (in St. Catherine's Monastery, wherever it is).

A man says he told his son he didn't need to get a marriage license to live with the girl, it didn't prove love, etc (I had just seen a terrible film, Jude The Obscure, which said the same thing after an eternity of talk and tragedy.) The wise son said yes, BUT if I get the license, I get cheaper car and other insurance rates, etc.

Either we ALL (who drive safely) get those discounts or they are "special rights." and while it is a compromise, until we get the law changed, we deserve same sex marriage to at least get what heterosexuals get.

And that's another thing, some businesses give discounts to people who prove they went to church. As long as they are private businesses, fine, BUT if they are taking taxpayers money that too is "special rights" and should be against the law.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Troy Perry, Barry Obama—It IS "our time" and you/we minorities have the same problems

This is a sermon to Rev. Perry and President Obama about the religious bigots who attack both men and their supporters over their religious beliefs: Both are viewed by "religious leaders of the dominant religions as "other."

Rightwingers are questioning the religion of Obama, as they have questioned the "religion" of homosexuals, especially those who form separate churches, mainly the Metropolitan Community Church, and founder Perry.

Obama can't win, even more so than Christian homosexual Americans. If he is a Christian, as he is, it is said to not be the "right" church, and what is his church, etc. If he is accused of secretly being a Muslim, which he is not, then he is surely considered to be a "different" American. The same people pushing this agenda say the same thing about homosexual/glbt Christians. They find quotes, out of context, thus misusing their Bible or Koran, to condemn those whose sexuality or religion differs from theirs—just as those falsely "accused" of being homosexual or Muslim, are in a position of being wrong no matter how they answer—since even if they 'deny" being either, they then seem to be agreeing that being either is "bad."

The "issue" of the proposed mosque at "ground zero" in New York has confused the issue even more. But it is important to say that those who have compared the objection to building where the mosque/center would be to how "Christians" handled the KKK are right. The point is that those objecting (including this writer, but for obviously other reasons—I am homosexual and the Islamic people want to kill me). But we must never forget that, if we want "moderate" Muslims to speak out against the radical ones who want to destroy our nation and civilization, then we need to have "moderate' Christians speak out against extremists who want to take away the civil rights of minorities, including homosexual Americans. And the issue of the KKK is the best proof that in most of history "Christians did NOT do "What Jesus would do." The vast majority of "Christians" did not only NOT speak out against the KKK and White Citizens Councils, most of the members were "Christian" including preachers, cops, and politicians-some were all three. And moderate religious people have not spoken against the violence—verbal and physical—against homosexual Americans.

And the issue of same-sex marriage is the same as the issue of inter-racial marriage-which has to be admitted by Obama. The lies bigots used to oppose inter-racial marriage (protecting children of such marriages being a major point) are the same lies used to oppose same-sex marriage. It goes without saying that President Obama is proof that children of such marriages can do ok.

And the same arguments against homosexjuals serving openly in the Armed Forces were used to try to stop the racial integration of the military.

So I urge the two men to get together and answer the lies of bigots and show the vast majority of good American citizens that facts of the matter—truthiness—despite Stephen Colbert's fun with it—is NOT something a great nation can use as a guide.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Windy City Times article on the history of gay marriage

Windy City Times has done a great service to its readers by being, as far as I know, the first of the lgbt media to actually try to give a short history of the community/movement attitudes on same sex marriage.

It has been ignored by most of the general press and the glbt press that there has been controversy about how to view marriage from the very start of the movement to gain equal rights for homosexuals-in 1950 with early/first Mattachine.

And when members of Mattachine realized that, despite the tremendous expansion of the organization from one to dozens of meetings each week, they were only reaching local people, some members moved to become public and publish a magazine to educate everyone,-homosexual and non-homosexual- on the issues. Thus, despite the wording in the article, ONE was THE first public publication, not "among" the first. And although the magazine was the reason/impetus, from the start it was realized that if successful, there would be a need for educational efforts and social service efforts and work to push research on the subject, so in each of these fields ONE was first.

And, from the start, founders being human, there was tension over which of the parts was the more important, and that led to a separation of the organization in 1965. Windy City Times published a review of the only book/record (Pre-Gay L. A., by C. Todd White) of the history of this organization, which published these articles on marriage, and held discussions about it. So it is misleading for the unknown author of this article to fail to mention that although ONE archives deserves all the credit given in the article, it is only a part of the original ONE Inc archives/library. There is no way an article about ONE Archives can be covered without covering the other part of the collection, that of the Homosexual Information Center.

If the article merely limited itself to the issue of marriage and referred to the ONE Magazine articles, perhaps it would not be valid or relevant to point this historic fact out. But you and the people at ONE Archives open the issue when they claim to be founded in 1952—which they were NOT. ONE Inc was and they are not and have never been ONE, Inc. They were given the collection that the Dorr Legg faction of ONE had and they were in a sense taken over by the third part of the collection, that of major ONE person Jim Kepner who left ONE and formed his own archives, which after Dorr's death was joined by the ONE part-that is why at first it was called the ONE/IGLA Collection and for a short time the ONE/ILGA/HIC collection, reuniting all parts of the ONE Inc collection.

ONE Archives was not incorporated in 1952, ONE, Inc was and in about 1965 ONE Inc formed a tax-exempt part, ISHR-the Institute for the Study of Human Resources, which eventually took over ONE, Inc. Today neither exist, except for probable errors in the state of California records. But those records show when ONE Archives was incorporated and that was not in 1952. It was after the Homosexual Information Center was incorporated and after ILGA (International Gay & Lesbian Archives) was.

It is strange that there is no mention of the editor of ONE Magazine, Don Slater, ONE co-founder and main co-founder of the Homosexual Information Center along with Jim Schneider, who was kicked out as board member of ONE Inc for his efforts to keep the organization whole, and then became a board member of the ONE Archives and probably is the main reason ONE Archives was able to actually get the building housing ONE Archives available for occupation before he was kicked out again, and this writer.

In a sense, both parts of the archives can claim to be founded in 1952, as that is when the collection began. Not the organizations controlling them today, but the material-material which all three men get credit or, yet are not mentioned in the article, yet it is they who got these articles published.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Review of Stonewall Uprising in Windy City times (8-4-10)

To Tracy Baim:

I must once again register my complaint about people and publications giving false information about the history of the movement to gain equal/civil rights for homosexual Americans. Your article by Richard Knight, Jr. (Knight at the Movies does this in the reviews of Stonewall Uprising. No excuse/reason will not allow the words "The Stonewall riots, the beginning of the gayrights movement in this country..." This is not just semantics. This is faking history—sort of lie Fox News and bigots do.

It is not "similar to other singular moments in history in that many of the details of what exactly happened-when and how it happened, as well as who was involved-have become buried within the momentousness of the incident itself." Nonsense. The history of the total movement is well documented, since the start in 1950, and in Windy City Times, for instance. There have been many instances in this movement's history, and it is not a proven fact that this one incident is more important in the struggle than many other incidents. Who makes such decisions? Are court cases not important / the educatinal work much earlier, such as Frank Kameny's efforts and the picketing of historic places, suchas in phiadelphia? Is something more important because lazy media people report it more than other incidents?
What type of "overview" of the 1950s and 60s ignores all the work done by men and women since 1950? And to quote Eric Marcus again, after he has already apologized for being misquoted is lazy journalism.

It is pleasant to hear views of films/fiction, but it is not acceptible in a lgbt pulication to repeat lies and false history in a documentary that claims to be presenting the truth that others have ignored.
Regarding Ron Tate:

Obama handed the Republicans a wonderful gift by supporting the building of the mosque near Ground Zero. 70 per cent of Americans oppose it. This will ensure a landslide Republican victory come November although that was almost a guarantee. Obama has eroded much of his liberal base including gays, where he has stalled in fulfilling major promises. He also ran on a platform to end the middle East wars. He continues to spend us into an insurmountable debt. November is not going to be pretty!

I'm reading about 'Republicans attack Obama over Muslim center comments' on Fluent News. Here is the link:

Maybe I am "playing games," and becoming a Karl Rove, but I have been thinking about this issue-he had so many Americans excited, and now they are either no longer excited or are questioning his work/administration.

He, with a majority of Americans, proved that a man named Barak could be elected to the highest office of this nation, and probably the world. But its not just Michele's trip to Spain, or his slow reaction to the Gulf spill, or that he has failed to do what every other president has failed to do, solve minor problems that build up enough anger in various people to make a majority-such as not paying Black farmers (farming income they are owed that was paid to white farmers), or Native Americans (oil royalties owed for a decade or more and kept in courts and congress for lousy reasons, unethical and incompetent) or that we still have kids' names on travel ban lists, etc.

But it is time that he stop trying to prove what he already has, as a black Barak. It is time he is Barry, a bi-racial human, man, white AND black, and mainly raised by the white part of his family. He has to lead, even if it means he is a one-term president. His specific words, for instance, about the issue of the msoque in new York are accurate-but tone-deaf. This is not an issue of religious freedo-the First Amendment. Most Americans, even those of us who afre not "religious" knwo full well the vils that are done to noln-Muslims in Muslim controlloed nations. Why should we be asked to give special rights to Muslims here when they kill non-Muslism, and they kill homosexsuals?

I can personally give proof that not all American hate Muslims. Two blocks from my home is a mosque. As far as I know, no one has made any complaints in the years it has been there. It took over a closed Presbyterian church. It violated no local laws, and has cAused no parking complaints/problems. The same can not be said of the largest Baptist (southern) church in Shreveport, when it tried to take over nearby land and expand. It got stopped by neighbors and politicians and changed its plans.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Another, older book aimed at teenage homosexual boys: Independence Day

I again wonder what happened to the book and author of Independence Day, written by B. A. Eker, in 1983 (published by Avon/flare). At the time she lived in Venice, CA.

The book is about a teenage boy who realized he was homosexual, and to learn about it and also to find someone to talk to about it. His main problem, a generic one, was that he loved his best friend, heterosexual. The title refers to the decision, after almost a year of distress about what to do, who to tell, etc, to tell his buddy on the 4th of July.

The book, like several published about the same time, handles the issue well, almost too well, since everyone turns out to be comfortable with the "coming out."

I wonder how many boys read this book and were helped by it, as well as parents, etc. And where is the author today-the book said she was working on another novel.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Lt Choi and the jealous people who destroy a movement by contstanly trying to find fault with those actually doing the work

Box Turtle Bulletin has a discussion about Lt Choi and his work and finances:

As someone who has worked in the movement to gain civil rights for homosexuals in America since 1959, I wonder how many younger people have yet had to deal in the constant attacks from people who do nothing, but spend their time looking for excuses to NOT do anything and to question the competence and ethics of others, the few, who have actually tried to change things?

As has been said, for other reasons, but that doesn't change the fact that it is true, a cause has more problems with its "friends" than with its enemies. And Lt. Choi is finding this out.

Who has the right or "need' to question what he is doing, if he is being paid? Do the "questioners' also question the same thing about rightwingers? And what have THEY done for the cause?

I could. I have done what he is doing, without pay. But where are the thousands of others, who like us, were kicked out of the military? What have they done since? Or the dozens in Los Angeles alone who were kept out of the military, even though they were drafted, because, of the work, without pay, of Don Slater and the Homosexual Information Center, based on our work in early Mattachine and ONE, Inc, with help from free attorneys like Herb Selwyn, and experts like Dr. Evelyn Hooker, and the support of movement founders Harry Hay, et al.

The people to ask questions of, their motive, competence and ethics, are the media, back then and now. Who has heard of the national effort of NACHO in May, 1966 to force the Armed Forces to deal honestly with this issue of homosexuals in the military? To be fair while the Los Angeles Times ignored, deliberately, our Motorcade though Los Angeles, saying they would cover it only if some harm came, the New York Times,did cover it, with an article by Peter Bart. But the vast majority of media ignored it, as they did until they found a cute guy and thus thought it sexy enough to cover. And that is sadly true of the vast majority of glbt people, who also ignored the issue until it was covered as entertainment by the media.

Where is the coverage of not only our Committee to Fight Exclusion of Homosexuals From the Armed Forces in 1966, but of the Servicemembers Legal defense Network today? Or the Palm Center at the University of California Santa Barbara? Have you seen those names in even the lgbt media?

But what discussion has there been, in 1966 and now? A little from, guess where, those who disapprove of the current war-then it was Vietnam and now Iraq or Afghanistan. Are glbt people are so stupid they can't deal with one issue without confusing it by adding another issue? There is a difference between opposing a war and whether or not homosexuals who choose to should be allowed to serve openly and honorably in the military.

The same nonsense is heard about same sex marriage. Do you oppose same sex marriage just because you oppose marriage? That is a different issue. Until we change the legal nature of marriage and get rid of the special rights, there is legitimate reason to get those rights for everyone-including same sex people, even those who are not homosexual.

It is time for us to enjoy the entertainment we get now, in movies and on Comedy Central-that is great and educational. But it is not education we must have to know what the real issues are. And an example is why we of all people are not speaking out against Islamists who kill us. It is not acceptable to just say we need to respect all religions-we are stupid if we don't see that some religions-even though all harm us-are worse than others.

The people spending their time worrying about Lt Choi, should be spending their time, energy and money on the important issues-but of course that means they have to do something besides sitting on the sidelines and finding something to complain about. Those people were writing letters to us at ONE Magazine years ago. And were the ones saying Mattachine would never work-while the founders were dreaming of marching down Hollywood Blvd someday. I ask those negative losers, how has that worked for you? Or did you grow up and join the march when it happened in 1970?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Note to Jon Stewart: Re: Your question of where the media went to get reaction to the California Court's marriage decision

Thanks for the good coverage of the CA marriage decision.

At first I laughed at your "question" of the media (was it CNN) going to a gay bar in West Hollywood to get a "gay" reaction-since obviously someone at a gay place would think it was a good decision. I thought, ah ha! Another example of the lazy media people. But I also thought it was a waste of time to have gone to any glbt center, or publication, as the people there would also obviously know of the decision and like it.

Sadly, as in any group or minority, a lot of people really do nothing for a cause, and often don't even know what is happening-many don't read newspapers or watch tv news.

So, in a sense, the best place to go to see if glbt people really know and care about the court's decision wouid be where they go for entertainment and pleasure, and not a place where serious thinking and work for a cause takes place-such as at a lgbt newspaper or gay/lesbian center of a PFLAG meeting.

If the movement for civil /equal rights for homosexuals is to continue and make progress, a lot of young people must get involved. If they want to continue to have the pleasure of a safe gay bar, they must work to keep it safe, and that means giving time, energy and money to their cause.

Sometimes the government is good and sometimes bad.

That was Always what we at Mattachine/ONE/HIC have thought. We of all people had no reason to trust any part of the government-we were treated (and entrapped) as criminals (laws probably based on relgion), shuned as sinners (by all religions), and of course probably following the religious thinking, labeled as mentally ill by the psychologists and psychiatrists-who testified against us in court and made money off of "curing" us (and apparently are still putting young people into "care centers" to change them).

Working with the system we, the community/movement, from 1950 on have essentially changed all of this, so now the bigots are accusing the courts, which one were anti-us and were making decisions THEY liked, of being activist, because the decisions are going against the them. Most of the media that once attacked us, is now neutral or gay-friendly.

Same with racial issues. Only someone who lived when the preachers, politicians and newspapers were saying terrible things about black Americans and any white Americans who supported their efforts to gain civil/equal rights, would know how much better the world is today. That is now more true for women and homosexuals.

Now in a sense the government and other institutions (except religious ones) are on our side. But, as Harry Hay warned till the end of his life-look at what happened in Germany. We must be constantly alert to people and groups that would reverse our gains. The founders of this movement did their job, and each generation since has, so now it is up to the young homosexual men and women of today to hold what we have given them and build on it an even better nation, for us and all Americans.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Wehonews article on DADT by Carleton Cronin-Straight Poop on DADT.

Thanks for that moving report by Carleton Cronin on a real example of why Don't Ask, don't tell is so terrible-for all servicemembers. He visited a former military buddy who was dying, in South Dakota and who had trusted him enough to tell him he was gay. And Cronin is the example of why more and more Americans are aware of the real consequences of the rule and why it separates men and women who need to work and trust each other.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Bay Area Report of July has short list of some glbt archives/libraies

The Bay Area Reporter answered a question from a reader by giving a sample of lgbt libraries/archives. Many papers during the year mention some, such as Liberty Press in Kansas reports on the new archives at the library at the University of Kansas, but it is good to have a larger listing in all our community/movement publications, and they are of course listed in Gayellow Pages.