Page 200 - Gay San Francisco_Eyewitness Drummer
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180                                     Jack Fritscher, Ph.D.
               This article proposes taxing churches to fund art, and mentions gay
            bashing. As a longtime activist for social justice, civil rights, and peace, I
            need to explain that the Catholic press was once quite progressive before
            it was corrupted by the fundamentalism sweeping the planet in the 21
            century. The same is true of the gay press which was progressive in its first
            years in the 1970s before being hijacked by politically correct fundamen-
            talist conservatives in the 1980s.
               For my “Chicago Seven” article, my original typed manuscript exists
            with edit marks made in red ink by Jim Kane who returned the original to
            me with copies of the published column which also exists. [Editor’s note:
            See other columns on “media” written by Jack Fritscher and published in
            Dateline Colorado, edited by Jim Kane, at]
               The Chicago Seven were put on trial (September 24, 1969) for incit-
            ing a riot at the 1968 Democratic Convention in Chicago. Four of the
            “Chicago Seven” were Abbie Hoffman, Tom Hayden, Rennie Davis, and
            Jerry Rubin, with the side-wise participation of Allen Ginsberg, William
            Burroughs, Timothy Leary, Phil Ochs, and Judy Collins. The riot had,
            in fact, been caused by the police who opened the hostilities by moving
            in against guru Ginsberg and his gay followers in Lincoln Park, 11 PM,
            Sunday, August 25, the eve of the Convention. A year before Stonewall
            in New York, the fags in Chicago fought back. Both cop-riot and hippie-
            resistance spread out of Lincoln Park as captured in Haskell Wexler’s
            dramatic film shot as cinema verite during the confrontations, Medium
            Cool (1969). The iron-fisted conservative fascist Mayor Richard Daley,
            confronted by the hippie Yippie gay protest, detailed nearly 25,000 police,
            soldiers, and National Guard who overshot their mark and began clubbing
            and gassing the rather bourgeois Convention crowd — live, on television,
            to the chant of “The Whole World Is Watching.” Inside the Convention,
            at the same time, August 28, 1968, CBS News correspondent Dan Rather
            was slugged in the stomach on the Convention floor shouting, “Get your
            hands off me,” causing CBS News anchor Walter Cronkite to say live on
            TV: “It looks like you have some thugs down there, Dan.” Proving thirty-
            five years later in 2005 that “1984” goes on forever, similar thugs saw to
            Dan Rather’s firing from CBS News because of — it was “reported” — his
            anti-Bush “reporting” during the 2004 presidential election.
               In his Palimpsest, Gore Vidal explained that eventually the Chicago
            courts, rejecting that the 1968 bloodbath was a hippie riot, called this a
            “police riot” — that is, a riot caused by the police who beat and bloodied
            hippies and convention delegates and news reporters and anyone — male
            or female, young or old, black or white, gay or straight — opposed to the
            war. “The police,” Vidal wrote, “were unselective in their porcine fury,
            and so, for once, they got a moderately bad press.” (Page 211) Vidal’s use

          ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 05-05-2017
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