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Author Archive | Don Gorton

The Election: Facing Facts, Fighting Back

“SURREAL” is a good descriptor for the sensory experience of the 2016 presidential election. Consider the contrived chaos akin to a “reality show,” the cartoonish quality of much of the discourse, and the shrill rhetorical attacks on various constituencies—though seemingly not the LGBT community.

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Shock and Horror

  “SURREAL” is a descriptor that expresses the peculiar sensory experience of the 2016 presidential election. Consider the contrived chaos akin to a “reality show,” the cartoonish quality of much of the discourse, and the shrill rhetorical attacks on various constituencies—though seemingly not the LGBT community. Truly historic was the failure of prognosticators to call […]

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The Lure of the Muscular Male

  THE MUSCULAR MALE PHYSIQUE can arrest observers’ gaze involuntarily. Research by social psychologists indicates that muscular male bodies capture and hold the attention of spectators both male and female. Whatever our æsthetic sensibilities, the unconscious mind seems to think the mesomorphic or muscular body type is worth looking at. Since at least the mid-20th […]

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Was the Orlando Massacre a Hate Crime or an Act of Terror?

THE JUNE 12TH MASSACRE at the LGBT club Pulse in Orlando illustrates the commonalities between hate crimes and terrorism. Hate crimes tend to be more targeted against a particular demographic group, in this case, the LGBT community. Terrorism is usually indiscriminate. The only quality victims share is being in the wrong place at the wrong […]

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Obergefell Ruling Goes Beyond Gay Marriage

  THE RECENT DECISION of the United States Supreme Court in Obergefell v. Hodges, recognizing a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, stands as a milestone in GLBT history on a scale with the 1969 Stonewall Riots. The contrast between 1969 and 2015 demonstrates how epic the intervening 46 years have been. Over a short time […]

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While Maurice Slept

  A COMPELLING CASE can be made for E. M. Forster’s Maurice as the first gay novel. Completed 100 years ago this year, Forster’s boldness lay in his revolutionary decision to adapt the discourse of the marriage novel to a moving depiction of same-sex love. He was the first to do so, even if his […]

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Russian Crackdown Puts Straight Orgs on the Spot

The international outrage over the new Russian law prohibiting “propaganda on non-traditional sexual relationships”—and the call for a boycott on Russian products—has spilled over into some cultural institutions in the U.S. and elsewhere.”

In New York, the Metropolitan Opera’s gala opening on September 23 was a Russian-themed affair, and

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Windsor Decision Sets Precedent on Anti-Gay Animus

U.S. v. Windsor recognized a proposition with potentially far-reaching effects: the idea that bans on same-sex marriage, which exist in most states, embody constitutionally impermissible prejudice against gays and lesbians. The Supreme Court’s decision is, to be precise, directed at Congress: the Defense of Marriage Act or DOMA—that pre-emptive 1996 law that denied federal benefits […]

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Incident Exposes Romney as Homophobic Bully

THE POLITICAL WORLD was rocked on May 10 by the revelation that the eighteen-year-old Mitt Romney and his ‘posse’ attacked Cranbrook schoolmate John Lauber, whose long, bleach-blond hair, worn after the fashion of Veronica Lake, sparked ire in the future politician. With appalling force, a group that included the school’s wrestling champion pounced ‘like a pack of dogs’ on an effeminate boy, whose distress manifested itself in loud screams, and forcibly cut his hair. …

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What really happened at the Stonewall Inn?

  Stonewall: The Riots That Sparked the Gay Revolution by David Carter St. Martin’s Press. 352 pages. $24.95   THE STONEWALL RIOTS of June 28 to July 3, 1969, following a police raid on an illegal, Mafia-owned gay bar in New York’s Greenwich Village, marked a decisive turning point in gay American history. The unprecedented […]

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