I like the picture of Barney Frank on the cover of the latest issue of The Gay & Lesbian Review. I like what he says in his article—it is hard to understand how LGBT people can vote—not be—Republican this year. And other articles cover issues that politics affects or are affected by politics and inform us of issues we may not have thought about. Obviously AIDS is one example. How we are affected by EEOC is another—especially, as the interview with Chai Feldblum points out, the Macy decision and Trans issues.
Another such issue is covered in the article on marriage in Spain. I would never have thought that in the celebration of that victory there are unsolved problems such a the fact that two men cannot adopt a child: the laws require a mother’s name on the birth certificate. I also am reminded of how we get results we didn't want, such as the sort of victory on marriage (years ago—how fast we forget!) in Hawaii didn’t bring victory. Rather, it almost brought us an Amendment to stop same sex marriage, sort of stopped by passage of the lousy DOMA Act.
It is funny but silly that it seems bigots fighting LGBT issues in France try to get the public against them by calling them American. In the same vein, there are two separate philosophical issues covered in articles that still need to be understood. Most of us don’t see the problem, but apparently the distinctions are important. One (again in France) is the distinction between informing someone of something and educating them. Another is, again, the issue of gender being a social construct. Such discussions will not be found in “timely” LGBT publications.
What maybe found in them would be discussion of Marilyn Monroe being a lesbian. Something that I am constantly seeing as an issue now, and in judging our founders and leaders, is that some did not want to put “sex” into the early public discussions. But Hal Call and others did. It is relevant in politics of a sort, as Bayard Rustin’s life proved. He was of course not liked because he was homosexual—he operated in a black area so color in a sense was not the issue. But it seems that JFK called him an “old black fairy.” A side of Kennedy we don’t understand since he had living in the White house is homosexual friend. But it was his actually having sex and getting arrested that hurt him—so that he almost didn’t have the chance to make the March on Washington a great success.
I can understand that some people are Republican. The primary concern I have in voting regards the Supreme court—who makes the next appointments will affect us for generations beyond just who is the president. Another point, to get back to Barney, is his saying that the hard thing is to see moderate Republicans being kicked out of office by extremists rightwing Republicans. There are lots of questions some of us would like to ask Mr. Frank. But what only truly nutty LGBT people would raise is how he was in his work. Only jealous people seem to find reason to attack him. And he was what we want—someone who happens to be homosexual and is judged by how he serves ALL of the voters/citizens.
And it is sure strange when you think of how Communism both helped started our movement and then had to be kicked out to let it grow and be successful, and harry Hay being hauled before the HUAC to testify, to read about a woman spying in/on the Communist arty in the late 1940s and being a closet Lesbian (Angela Calomiris). You wonder where David Schine is today—and how closet cases like Roy Cohn could do what they did.
But it just may be that what gets this issue discussed is the whole page ad inside the cover—“Historical Gay Book Collection For Sale.” There are “issues” with LGBT archives in Houston, and part of the problems is the MCC selling an archive placed with them for safe keeping. Most asked is the question of who bought the material—there is no public knowledge of who bought it or how much was paid. So the ad and person involved is maybe inadvertently being connected to the problem.
Finally, letters to the editor are still what I like in publications. This was the most-read section in ONE / Tangents, followed closely by the news.