IN THE NEWS: June is Gay Pride Month!
We didn’t have to look very far to find a Tarcher book that celebrated the accomplishments that gays have brought to American culture.
How the Homosexual Saved Civilization: The True and Heroic Story of How Gay Men Shaped the Modern World by Cathy Crimmins (who also co-authored Newt Gingrich’s Bedtime Stories for Orphans, which gives you a hint about how shrew and irreverent she is on any topic).
Crimmins’ book examines how camp, irony, and the gay aesthetic have become a part of our national sensibility; the effect it has had on film, literature, music and television; and the shaping of the way straight people talk, think, dress and eat.
Writes Crimmins: “There was a much-used adage during the feminist movement of the 1970s: “Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels.” When I look at what gay men have accomplished in our world, I think: Homosexuals did everything with great style and panache, and they did a lot of it in tiny closets with no lights, and sometimes while fearing for their lives.
The amazing richness gay men have contributed to our culture can’t be denied—yet hardly anyone in straight America has acknowledged it on the grand scale it demands. And gay men should get points for extra effort. They’ve given of themselves while always living within a largely homophobic culture and while coping with a devastating disease that continues to make horrible inroads into their community.
Gays are gradually being assimilated into mainstream culture, and therefore are at the point where their uniqueness as a people will be inevitably threatened. If they’re not careful, they could become boring, just like straight people. I hope that doesn’t happen.”