The Daily Agenda for Thursday, June 13

Jim Burroway

June 13th, 2013

New Jersey Assembly Committee Hearing on Proposed Conversion Therapy Ban: Trenton, NJ. The New Jersey Assembly’s Women and Children Committee will hear testimony on A3371, which would prohibit licensed therapists in the sate of New Jersey from providing therapies intended to change sexual orientation to minors. The hearing will take place today at 10:00 a.m. in Committee Room 16 in the State House Annex in Trenton.

White House Pride Reception: Washington, D.C. The White House will hold what has turned out to be an annual event lately, a June Pride reception for LGBT advocates, leaders and invited community members. White House officials are being tight-lipped about what President Barack Obama will say, but LGBT leaders have made it clear what they want to hear: an announcement that Obama will sign an Executive Order barring federal contractors from discriminating against LGBT workers. Whether they will get that is anybody’s guess. The reception will take place this afternoon at 5:00 p.m. EDT, and will be webcast live via the White House website.

Pride Celebrations This Weekend: Anchorage, AK; Baltimore, MD; Baton Rouge, LABisbee, AZ; Boise, IDButte, MT; Chemnitz, GermanyDenver, CO; Edinburgh, UK; Erie, PA; Flagstaff, AZIowa City, IAKalamazoo, MI; Lancaster, PALjubljana, Slovenia; Louisville, KYLuleå, Sweden; Lyon, FranceMemphis, TN (Black Pride); Münster, Germany; Nantes, France; Nashville, TNOldenburg, Germany; Pittsburgh, PA; Portland, OR; Portland, ME; Providence, RIRome, Italy; Sacramento, CASaskatoon, SKSitges, Spain; Spencer, INStrasbourg, France; Syracuse, NYThessaloniki, Greece; Thunder Bay, ON; Toulouse, France; Venice, ItalyVienna, Austria; Warsaw, PolandZagreb, Croatia.

AIDS Walks This Weekend: London, UK.

Other Events This Weekend: Lesbian and Gay Stadtfest, Berlin, Germany; Seoul LGBT Film Festival, Seoul, South Korea; Out In the Vineyard Gay Wine Weekend: Sonoma, CA; Tel Aviv LGBT International Film Festival, Tel Aviv, Israel; Bush Garden Gay Days, Williamsburg, VA.

Delaware Police Announce “Morals” Roundup: 1961. A state investigation in a “morals case” ended with the arrest of fifteen men, aged sixteen to twenty-seven years. As The Matachine Review commented, the sixteen-year-old “unfortunately gives authorities a valid reason to conduct the investigations,” although it is unclear from the Wilmington Evening Journal’s article of June 13 whether that was the focus of the investigation or merely something police discovered sometime after it began. The investigation started on April 6 when police officers in Newark arrested Vance H. Middleton, 37, who “admitted participating in immoral acts.” Police went to his home and “seized a mass of obscene pictures and literature and photographic equipment and original photographs. It was through these photographs that the identity of many of those in the investigation was established.” Through a kind of a snowballing operation in which each contact was interrogated in order to obtain the names of other contacts, police surmised that “The Newark parties drew persons from throughout Delaware, Elkton, Philadelphia and New York” and that “most of the immoral activity centered in the Newark-Brookside area of week-ends.” One man, James M.F. Short, 31, of Newark and Wilmington, was charged with “63 morals charges by state police” and was being “held for psychiatric treatment on the Newark charges.”

A reader sent a copy of the Wilmington Evening Journal’s article to The Mattachine Review, and added the following details.

Police pressure is terrible throughout the state, they are pressuring homosexuals that are picked up to name and identify all their acquaintances. They even go to the places where they are employed, call them off the job and not even permit them to inform their employers they are leaving. They then are held as long as the police desire to hold them and generally cost the respective employee his job (which the police clearly envision because of their actions). When they are picked up, they are taken to the station for interrogation, subjected to a contingent of police officials’ questioning, and their actions and conversation filmed and tape recorded for the entirety of their stay. Their legal rights are denied on a wholesale basis, and none of them as yet has taken any action against the police.

Of course, in some towns down state, attorneys will not even defend a prospective client against the police even on charges other than homosexuality. (Proof of that statement In the Delaware State News, Dover, Delaware)

Short, one of the defendants in the case, attempt,ed to implicate a State Trooper, so, of course, the numerous charges placed against him clearly indicate how the police plan to handle him.

[Sources: “15 Arrests in Morals Case End State’s Investigation.” Wilmington (DE) Evening Journal (June 13, 1961). As reprinted in the The Mattachine Review 7. no. 7 (June 1961): 27-28.]

Letter to the editor. The Mattachine Review 7. no. 7 (June 1961): 27.

Harold Call. “Calling Shots.” The Mattachine Review  7. no. 7 (June 1961): 4-5.]

LGBT Leaders Welcomed to White House With Rubber Gloves: 1995. Relations between the LGBT community and the Clinton Administration were at a low point in 1995. Instead of repealing the ban against gays in the military, the Clinton Administration negotiated “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” with conservative Democrats and Republicans. Instead of filing a Justice Department brief with the Supreme Court to weigh in on a lawsuit challenging Colorado’s Amendment 2 which would have banned civil rights protections for gay people, Attorney General Janet Reno sat on her hands. But with the White House beginning to cast an eye toward the 1996 elections, they realized that they needed to do something to try to placate a seriously pissed off constituency.

So on June 14, the Clinton Administration invited 40 gay leaders, including state senators and representatives, city council members, judges and other elected officials from around the country, to a special White House meeting. The meeting’s purpose was to announce that Marsha Scott, a deputy assistant to President Clinton, was being named as White House liason officer for gay and lesbian issues. They were also there to learn about a new 30-member presidential advisory council on HIV/AIDS. But before the meeting even got started, things got off on the wrong foot with the sight that greeted the LGBT leaders when they showed: Secret Service agents had put on rubber gloves before granting them access to the White House. The activists were furious when agents told them they were wearing the gloves to protect themselves from HIV. “For that to even happen at the White House shows they haven’t a clue about AIDS,” said Act Up spokesman Steve Michael. “It just shows where they’re at.”

What was supposed to be a grand kiss-and-make-up session quickly turned into yet another embarrasment for the Administration. Secret Service director Eljay Brown issued a statement saying that he regretted “the unfortunate actions” taken by his agents. “It is not the policy of the Secret Service to wear gloves merely based on known sexual preference.” The Treasury Department, which had jurisdiction over the Secret Service, was asked to investigate. White House press secretary Mike McCurry said, “It’s safe to say the chief of staff (Leon Panetta) and others were distressed by that and believe it to be an error of judgment.”

Paul Lynde: 1926. He studied drama at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois with fellow students Cloris Leachman, Charlotte Rae, Patricia Neal, Jeffrey Hunter and Claude Akins. Imagine what that class must have been like. After graduating in 1948, he moved to New York and became a stand-up comic and a Broadway actor. In 1960, he appeared in Broadway’s Bye Bye Birdie, as well as in its film adaptation in 1963. But most of his work was in television, where he appeared in numerous sitcoms (he was Uncle Arthur in Bewitched) and lent his voice to animated cartoons. He is probably best known as the “center square” for the game show Hollywood Squares, with host Peter Marshall, where Lynde became famous for his one-liners and double entendres. They say his sexual orientation was an open secret in Hollywood. It’s hard to imagine any secret being more open than his. Especially considering Hollywood Squares answers like these:

Peter Marshall: In the Wizard of Oz, the lion wanted courage and the tin man wanted a heart. What did the scarecrow want?
Paul Lynde: He wanted the tin man to notice him.

Peter Marshall: What do you call a man who gives you diamonds and pearls?
Paul Lynde: I’d call him “darling”!

Peter Marshall: Paul, in what famous book will you read about a talking ass who wonders why it’s being beaten?
Paul Lynde: I read it, “The Joy of Sex.”

Peter Marshall: Paul, why do Hell’s Angels wear leather?
Paul Lynde: Because chiffon wrinkles too easily.

Peter Marshall: According to legend, who looks better, a pixie or a fairy?
Paul Lynde (in deeper voice): Well, looks aren’t everything! (laughter) Well, I guess I would say…I would have to go with the fairy. (more laughter)

If you know of something that belongs on the agenda, please send it here. Don’t forget to include the basics: who, what, when, where, and URL (if available).

And feel free to consider this your open thread for the day. What’s happening in your world?


June 13th, 2013

Paul Lynde, the one and only. Here’s a clip that includes the “pixie/fairy” gag.

Priya Lynn

June 13th, 2013

Seeing Paul Lynde on TV prior to being a teenager it never occurred to me that he was gay. I assumed the sort of comments he made were strictly a joke and to me what made them funny was that him liking men and that sort of thing was obviously preposterously untrue.


June 13th, 2013

Met at the door with the Secret Service agents wearing rubber gloves? They should have immediately walked out.


June 13th, 2013

Attended a WONDERFUL event tonight in Philly. Bishop Gene Robinson (ret.) had a whirlwind day here and capped it off with a reception and screening of “Love Free or Die” at WHYY. At the reception, he was so approachable and due to the small size of the crowd (WHYY didn’t do the best job of promoting it), Wayne and I had a lot of face time with him.

He has opinions on so many subjects and was so funny and just a delight.

I think they will be streaming the movie on-line at some point for a week, but I can’t find a link yet. It is truly a very moving movie and should appeal especially to those of faith as to what organized religion can aspire to.

Here’s a link to his appearance yesterday on Radio Times:

Dave H

June 17th, 2013

Here’s another Paul Lynde bit I still remember 40+ years later:

Peter Marshall: What is the most abused and neglected part of your body?

Paul Lynde: Well, it may be abused but it CERTAINLY isn’t neglected!

(Actual answer: your feet.)

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