Page 424 - Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999
P. 424

406      Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999

               general  meeting....[because  Goodstein  had  written  such  divisive
               diktats as] “We must find ways to keep the emotionally disturbed
               members of our community [e.g.: sadomasochists] out of center stage
               roles and on the counseling couches where they belong....[And]...
               Most gay organizations are nearly always insolvent and dominated
               by people [e.g.: Embry at H.E.L.P.] who took them over from more
               responsible persons [Larry Townsend] through hysterical attacks
               on their integrity. These are the spokespeople whom our majority
               shuns....[And]....The most obvious examples of this new pride are
               the many new, well-lighted, expensively decorated bars and clubs
               [advertising in The Advocate] that are rapidly replacing the dingy
               toilets of old [e.g.: leather community bars featured in Drummer].”
                   Goodstein’s article was not idle rhetoric. His remarks provide
               the firm ideological base from which he intends to operate as a
               self-declared “practicing capitalist” [Advocate  No. 156]. Anyone
               who would doubt this, should take note of the invitational letter
               sent by Goodstein to a select “group of like-minded people,” [sic]
               and announcing “The 1976 Advocate Invitational Conference.”....
               [In addition] Goodstein’s “Opening Space” column is nothing less
               than a “Gay Capitalist Manifesto.”
                   Gay Sunshine, No. 24, [in its article “The Advocate: A Turn to the
               Right?”] reported how Goodstein, after purchasing The Advocate in
               the fall of 1974, shifted “the basic editorial position from dead cen-
               ter to somewhere between conservative and reactionary.” During
               the past year, The Advocate has been transformed into a show place
               of white, middle-class gay America. Features on travel, fashion, and
               entertainment suggest an affluent, carefree lifestyle in which gay
               means little more than fun and chic. Editorial statements, lashing
               out at the Gay Liberation Movement [and at leather culture], have
               promoted a myopic gay politics whose sole end is the passage of gay
               civil rights legislation, as if all will be well with gay America once
               anti-gay discrimination laws are enacted. Consequently, news items
               dealing with gay liberation spokespeople and organizations have
               been tailored, or censored, to conform with this editorial policy.
               —Excerpt from Lionel Biron, Gay Sunshine, No. 28, Spring 1976

               Even though Goodstein felt compelled to present Dave Kopay in The
            Advocate cover story (March 10, 1976), what comes through in his edi-
            torial is Goodstein’s inability to be existentially inclusive of the range of
            masculinity in his vision of the gay 1976 world dominated by rich sweater

              ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 03-16-2017
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