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“I’m sure one of the many gay commenters can explain it better than Wikipedia’s “camp” entry, but…
WHY exactly do gay dudes wanna sit around watching bitchy, shrewish, put-on, diva-ish, unconventional-looking women get in catfights and exchange tart-tongued barbs? Like, what is the actual, serious reason that is appealing to a guy dude? It’d be like a straight guy wanting to watch old queens play poker or something… It doesn’t compute.
I like to think if I was a gay guy I’d just sit around watching TROY all day or something. What’s with the whole Golden Girls/Glee/Housewives/catty high school satire thing where gay dudes watch that shit and tisk and hiss and twirl their nonexistent stache over all the vamping? Shouldn’t they just wanna watch dudes all the time, not fantasize themselves as Bea Arthur?” — Lex G, Hollywood Elsewhere
After months of unnecessary hand-wringing and delay, the White House and Congressional leaders appear to have reached an agreement on ending the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy that forced thousands of gay and lesbian service members to stay in the closet in order to serve their country. Although the agreement would postpone full repeal for a few months to await a Pentagon study on implementing the change, finally it creates a path to the full integration of the military. That is not just a matter of justice. It would make the military stronger.
Under the deal, reached Monday night by Democratic leaders and approved by the White House, Congress would vote on repeal in the next few weeks through an amendment to the Pentagon budget bill. The amendment says that the repeal would take place only after the president, the defense secretary and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff certify that it is consistent with military standards. At a minimum, that would extend the current law until Dec. 1, when the Pentagon study is due.
Considering the years of debate and study that have already passed, it is tempting to say that Congress should simply change the system now. It is unlikely, however, that there are enough votes for an immediate repeal, given the number of conservative Democrats who support Defense Secretary Robert Gates in his call to complete the study first.
Mr. Gates made it clear on Tuesday that he supports the agreement only because it allows more time for the study, and he carries significant weight on Capitol Hill. Despite his assent, however, it is not clear that both chambers have the votes to pass the amendment. President Obama needs to step in now to persuade wavering lawmakers to support the deal.
There are also several issues that need to be resolved during the study period regarding the implementation of the new policy, mostly involving benefits for same-sex partners of gay and lesbian service members. Because the Defense of Marriage Act does not allow federal spousal benefits for married same-sex couples, the military will have to work out ways to provide equivalent benefits to domestic partners.
These include issues of housing and foreign relocation, the ability to shop on a base and insurance benefits. At the moment, same-sex partners are often not even notified if a soldier dies or is wounded, and they need to be assured the military will honor their right to receive the memorial flag if their partner or spouse is killed in the service of this country. The study should deal with how to make the repeal happen, not whether to do so. While it is being prepared, the military must live up to its word that it has stopped drumming out openly gay and lesbian soldiers.
Repealing the “don’t ask, don’t tell” law does not automatically ensure that gay men and lesbians can serve openly. It simply takes the situation back to when the military set the policy on its gay members, before Congress gave it the force of law in 1993. Once it has the power to do so, the Obama administration says it will end the previous policy that homosexuality was not compatible with military service.
Until a law is passed guaranteeing that there will be no discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, full integration will require the continuing good faith of President Obama and his successors. One day soon, Congress must be brave enough to pass a bill like the Military Readiness Enhancement Act now pending in both houses, ensuring that all qualified Americans have the right to serve their country.
Marianne Boesky Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of twenty-five photographs by David Hurles, curated by John Waters and Dian Hanson, entitled ‘Outsider Porn.’
The exhibition’s title, ‘Outsider Porn,’ communicates the essence of David Hurles’s work over the past 40 years, in which he’s explored, experienced and captured an underground culture of frightening, psychotic sexual expression, aggressively pushing the boundaries of erotic taste. With these raw portraits of exaggerated criminal masculinity, Hurles continues to confuse and horrify the advancement of homoerotic art.
Born September 12, 1944 in Cincinnati, Ohio, David Hurles was attracted from earliest memory to the toughest boys in class, and later to his older sister’s delinquent boyfriends. In 1965 he moved to San Francisco, working first as a Kelly Girl typist, and then as a model specializing in auto-fellatio. In 1968 he became a photographer, supplying nude photos of men he picked up in the streets to the burgeoning gay pornography industry. He chose the studio name Old Reliable and, first in San Francisco and then in Hollywood, photographed, video- and audio-taped the roughest street hustlers, muggers, thieves and murderers for gay magazines, and for his successful mail order business. He has said that fear is his greatest inspiration. In the course of his career he was burglarized, robbed and beaten, and finally, in 2002, lost his cameras, his home, and his livelihood to the men he called “his world.”
Artist John Waters, like Hurles, pushes boundaries of conventionality through the representation of human sexuality. Working closely with Dian Hanson, Sexy Book Editor at Taschen, Waters assembles an exhibition of photographs that truthfully and accurately portray Hurles’s philosophy. In “Role Models,” Waters described Hurles: “David likes psychos. Nude ones. Money-hungry drug addicts with big dicks. Rage-filled robbers without rubbers. And of course, convicts—his ultimate Prince Charmings …”
Hurles gained some above ground recognition in 2005 with the monograph Speeding (Green Candy Press), followed in 2008 by The Big Penis Book (Taschen), and Outcast (Green Candy Press), an overview of his color work which was just released. Hurles currently lives on government assistance in a Hollywood nursing home since suffering a stroke in 2008. According to Hanson, “Hurles’ intelligence and affection for his models remain intact, and the staff has come to accept the aging, but still intimidating, men who occasionally visit.”
Marianne Boesky Gallery is located at 509 West 24th Street, between 10th and 11th Avenues. Our summer hours are Monday to Friday from 10am to 6pm. For further information or images, please contact Adrian Turner or Eve Wasserman at 212.680.9889 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Dear Theater Ethicist: Should I feel guilty that, for me, the most satisfying moment of Cirque du Soleil’s “Banana Shpeel” came when a clown was riddled with mock machine-gun fire?
“Dear Theatergoer: No. For one thing, the “mock” suggests that the clown was probably not seriously wounded. For another, clown eradication is something that would benefit all of humanity…”–Neil Genzlinger, NY Times