in the news/2
Volume 16/Issue 21

GLAAD Statement Regarding Renewed Attack
on Lesbian & Gay Americans

In response to the Family Research Council's announcement of a forthcoming television ad campaign promoting supposed "conversion" of Lesbians and Gay men to heterosexuality, Joan M. Garry, Executive Director of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) on Oct. 7 issued the following statement:
"The real message behind these ads is that Lesbians and Gay men exist. There it is: We exist. No amount of slickly packaged advertising can change that. The unmitigated gall of the people behind this campaign is appalling. When you get right down to it, these groups are showing their hand to the entire country and their message isn't really about 'hope' or 'healing' or 'understanding,' but rather, about intolerance, deception and moral bankruptcy. This new campaign represents what has become a relentless, well-financed and reprehensible assault on the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender community. So there you have it: Bottomless pockets overflowing with hollow messages."

GLAAD is the nation's Lesbian and Gay media advocacy organization. GLAAD promotes fair, accurate and inclusive representation of individuals and events in all media as a means of combating homophobia and all forms of discrimination based on sexual orientation or identity.

Dutch Politico Fined for Slur

The leader of a small conservative Christian political party in the Netherlands on Oct. 6 was fined 300 guilders (about US$160) after being convicted of discriminatory speech for a published anti-Gay remark he claimed was based on the Bible. Leen van Dijke of the RPF (Reformatofische Politieke Federatie), which holds 3 seats in the Netherlands' 150-seat House of Deputies, had been quoted in the Nieuwe Revu magazine in 1996 as saying, "One cannot divide sins into 'serious' and 'less serious.' Why is cheating the state out of money less serious than breaking the seventh commandment [against adultery]? Why should a practicing homosexual be better than a thief?"

Since his prosecution was announced in March 1998, van Dijke has argued in the media that his conviction would mean the end of the freedoms of speech and religion-but the court found that given his public standing, he must consider the impact of his public statements. Van Dijke had also said in his hearing last month that he'd been a fool to allow the interview to be published, and denied any intention to insult Gays and Lesbians or to compare them to criminals. [NewsPlanet]

RuPaul Show Off;
Vivier Dies

RuPaul, the cross-dressing supermodel/singer, has lost his show on VH 1, according to the New York Post. The talkshow went on the air Oct. 12, 1996 and passed the 100 episode mark as its second season ended last month. When RuPaul signed with VHI in June 1997, it was reportedly a three-year contract. VHl has said only that there are no plans for new production but that it will continue to air repeats. RuPaul spokesperson Randy Barbado said, "RuPaul loves TV and RuPaul loves VHI. And if RuPaul doesn't continue to be on VHI, you'll find him elsewhere. The Queen was built for television and if she doesn't continue there, just wait a few minutes and you'll find her someplace else."

Roger Vivier, the openly Gay man who invented the stiletto heel, died Oct. 2 in Toulouse at the age of 90, according to Le Monde. His designs dominated women's shoes from the 1930's through the 1960's, although he'd designed a plastic sandal for a downscale French chain as recently as last year. Vivier designed for Bally, Schiaparelli, Christian Dior, Pierre Balmain, Guy Laroche, and Yves Saint-Laurent, among other leading designers, and for celebrity clients including Marlene Dietrich, Sophia Loren and Elizabeth Taylor. He created the shoes Queen Elizabeth wore at her coronation in 1953.

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