DANGER! POLICE AT WORK

04-197208XX 09DANGER — please beware of the cottage at Marylebone Station, there is a minimum of four arrests a day there at present.

The cottages on Shepherds Bush Green are being watched and often raided by the police. A Gay News reader, on his way home from work at night, sees the police lying in wait quite frequently.

Be careful at the cottage on Charing Cross Station, another reader has pointed out to us that either BR police or the Met. police are busy there at the moment.

Please don’t forget that we have warned you that the cottages in Battersea Park are under continual surveillance this Summer.

Also remember our warning about the cottage at Baker Street Underground Station. Police and Transport Police have their eyes on what goes on there. And you may be in for a beating if caught or suspected by those gentlemen in blue!

All the above information has been supplied by Gay News readers who have witnessed something unpleasant at the mentioned cottages.

Imprint

THE GAY NEWS
EDITORIAL COLLECTIVE

  • 03-197207XX-02Richard Adams
    (design)
  • Martin Corbett
  • Ian Dunn
    (Scotland)
  • Denis Lemon
  • Glenys Parry
    (Manchester)
  • Suki J. Pitcher
  • Doug Pollard
  • David Seligman
  • Jean-Claude Thevenin

GAY NEWS SPECIAL FRIENDS

  • Roger Baker
  • Graham Chapman
  • John Chesterman
  • Lawrence Collinson
  • Ian D. Baker
  • Antony Grey
  • Julian D’ Grinspoon
  • Peter MacMillan
  • Denis Cohn
  • Sylvia Room
  • Manus Sasonkin
  • David Sherlock
  • Brian Dax
  • Mike Winters

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

  • Andrew & Peter
  • Jane & Shaun
  • Richard & Norman
  • Ken & Allan
  • Michael, Angus & Ken
  • and all the other
    Friends & Loved Ones.

CONTENTS

Letters Page 2
Summer News Page 3
Scotland Page 4
Gay Pride Illustrations Page 5
2032 : A Gay Odyssey Page 6
The Biograph Reviews Page 7
Samaritans Page 8
V.D. – A Reply Page 8
Mrs.Gayle’s Diary Page 9
Reviews Page 10
Personal Ads Page 11
Information Page 12
Het Another Page 12

Gay News is published fortnightly by Gay News
Limited, 19 London Street, London W2 1HL.
Telephone 01-402 7805. Distribution: Us, You and
a Prayer Book. Printed by F.I.Litho Limited,
182 Pentonville Road, London N1. Gay News is the
registered Trade Mark of Gay News Limited

Editorial

03-197207XX-02This, the third issue of Gay News, will be coming to you after we of the paper’s collective have been to the House of Commons to talk with members of Parliament who are sympathetic to and interested in the paper you are holding. The M.P.’s we are to meet, like many other valued members of society, have been outraged by the recent House of Lords decision that still allows it to be a criminal offence to ‘conspire’ to help relieve peoples isolation and loneliness. And so what if some of the people who use the personal column of this paper are only interested in a bit of fun or a form of excitement. Why should it be illegal for people to indulge in their fantasy’s and possibly contact someone they might not have otherwise met; with whom they might have an extremely rewarding sexual union., and maybe more.

                  THE EDINBURGH BOOKSHOP
                  57 George Street
                  Edinburgh 2
       27th June 1972.
Gay News Ltd.
19 London Street,
LONDON W.2 1HL.

Dear Sirs,

    We have received 25 copies of the first issue of your publication Gay News, although we did not order these.

    We have no intention whatever of displaying or selling this publication here, and if you cannot arrange to collect these copies from us, they will be dumped with other refuse in ten days's time.

        Yours faithfully,
    THE EDINBURGH BOOKSHOP LTD.

          A.L. RUSSELL.
            Director.

We apologise for continually referring, in Gay News’ pages, to this somewhat ‘queer’ legal situation, but whilst the threat of possible prosecution (because of the perpetuating of these archaic laws) hangs over this papers existence, we would like to remind you of the possible consequences of our actions and keep you informed of any further developments. In issue No. 4 we will tell you of the outcome of our visit to Our seat of Parliament. For now, keep the ads coming. We will print them.

The feedback from you, the papers readers, has so far been favourable. You seem to have been interested and amused by its contents. A particularly popular feature so far has proved to be The Biograph Reviews, although not to all, who accuse us of encouraging gays to perpetuate parts of gay life which seemingly aren’t acceptable to heterosexuals. Gay News and Grinspoon wish neither to encourage or discourage, just to inform in the manner that seems fitting. Another popular regular is the Het of the Month spot. Although we seem to be having quite a run of Hets; in the future we shall be featuring a few notable and ‘infamous’ Gays that hopefully are known and loved by many of you.

One criticism. which was shared by many of you was that issue No. 2 was slanted too much in one direction. This sometimes seems as if it will be inevitable, although we shall constantly strive to keep a fair balance on the news, features etc. that will go into each edition. Please carry on letting us have your reactions to Gay News, no matter how trivial they may seem to you, or how heavily critical they may be of us. Gay News, if it is truely to be your paper needs these reactions, as it does your news, articles and information.

                  W.H. SMITH & SON LTD.
                  Strand House, Portugal Street
                  London WC2A 2HS

D. Pollard, Esq.             24th June, 1972.
Gay News Ltd.
19, London Street,
LONDON W.2.

Dear Mr Pollard,

    Thank you for your letter of 23rd June enclosing a copy of your projected fortnightly newspaper GAY NEWS.

    I am afraid that I cannot feel that this publication would be a commercial proposition so far as W.H. Smith are concerned. As I am sure you will appreciate, one of our biggest problems is lack of display space and it is essential that such space as is available is given to titles which, in our opinion, will sell and sell quickly and, quite frankly, I do not think that GAY NEWS comes into this category.

    I must, therefore, refuse your offer of supplies for W.H. Smith and thank you for giving us the opportunity.

         Yours sincerely,

         H.A. Baron
         News Buyer & Administrative Manager
         News & Book Sales Department.

Some people may have found that this issue has taken slightly longer to reach them than will be usual. This is because we have been devoting a lot of time to expanding the outlets for Gay News. As you will see from the reproduced letter from W.H. Smith’s we have been having difficulty in finding a major distributor. Menzies, to date, have not even bothered to reply to the letter sent to them some time ago, asking them if they would be interested in making the paper more freely available. We take it that then answer is no too. I suppose we always knew that this would be the situation. So we have undertaken to distribute the paper ourselves as widely as possible. With your continued help, and the people who are at present stocking or finding new outlets, you should soon find it an easier task to find this newspaper. From this issue onwards we shall print a list of the outlets for Gay News both in and out of London. And to those of you who buy your copy in a gay pub that is friendly to us we will continue to interupt your conversations, drinking and general socialising, although not rudely we hope. Those of us who are selling Gay News in this way wish to thank you for your patience, understanding and encouragement.

Lastly, if there are any aspiring but good drag artists, who would possibly he attracted to turning a West London pub onto drag, could they please get in touch with the Gay Creations Department of Gay News. It would he helpful if you had your own amplifier and other necessary hits and pieces. We look forward to hearing from you, as we do from All of you.

Imprint

THE GAY NEWS
EDITORIAL COLLECTIVE

  • Richard Adams
    (design)
  • Martin Corbett
  • Ian Dunn
    (Scotland)
  • Denis Lemon
  • Glenys Parry
    (Manchester)
  • Doug Pollard
  • David Seligman
  • Jean-Claude Thevenin

GAY NEWS SPECIAL FRIENDS

  • Roger Baker
  • Graham Chapman
  • John Chesterman
  • Lawrence Collinson
  • Martin Grant
  • Antony Grey
  • Julian D’ Grinspoon
  • Peter MacMillan
  • Suki J. Pitcher
  • Sylvia Room
  • Manus Sasonkin
  • David Sherlock
  • Marc Fryd

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

  • Andrew & Peter
  • Jane & Shaun
  • Richard & Norman
  • Ken & Allan
  • Michael, Angus & Ken
  • and all the other
    Friends & Loved Ones.

CONTENTS

  • Editorial ___________________________ Page 2
  • The 1967 Confidence Trick ________________ Page 3
  • N.C.C.L. & Scotland _____________________ Page 4
  • Gay Pride Week _______________________ Page 5
  • The Samaritans _______________________ Page 5
  • David Hockney Interview _________________ Page 6
  • Spare Rib Attacked _____________________ Page 7
  • Het of the Month ______________________ Page 10
  • Personal Ads ________________________ Page 11
  • Information _________________________ Page 12

Gay News is published fortnightly by Gay News Limited
19 London Street, London W2 1HL. Telephone 01-402 7805.
Distribution: Us, You and a Prayer Book.
Printed by F.I.Litho Limited, 182 Pentonville Road, London N1.
Gay News is the registered Trade Mark of Gay News Limited

Editorial

02-197206XX 1After some very trying times, issue one finally hit the streets, and the first feedback from our would-be readership began. Some of us weren’t too keen on going out to sell the paper ourselves, since there is more than enough work to do in the writing and the preparation of the paper, but the reception almost everywhere was so overwhelmingly friendly that I don’t think any of us will hesitate with this or any future issue.

Of course. there were times when some of us found it a bit trying – like being threatened by a couple of skinheads in Richmond, or being asked “If I buy one can I have you?” (the answer was yes, but the guy didn’t wait!).

People have begun to send in letters, articles, and reviews, whim is really nice and exactly what we hoped would happen – keep up the good work. The number of people dropping into the office has increased, too, which makes life a bit crowded some of the time, but they are often coming to offer help with office work, selling and distribution (all of which is very welcome) as well as just calling in for a chat.

One such visitor was Alan Brien of the Sunday Times, carried into our midst by a whirlwind born of the fleeting press interest in gay small ads, the Spare Rib party, and Jill Tweedie. As those of you who saw his piece in the Sunday Times, 25th June, must have realised, the main topic of conversation was the Radical Feminists in G.L.F. and their behaviour at the Spare Rib party. We both agreed that it was a pity, since most people will now think that Radical Feminism equals Gay Lib, whereas they are only a very small minority on its right wing. Many others in G.L.F. are leaving the movement rather than have these people’s views imposed upon them – on Monday, Harrow local group decided to split from G.L.F. and go it alone under the name “GAY UNITY”: a title which seems to be an appropriate hint to the divisive Rad. Femmes. It appears from what we hear that other groups are considering similar actions.

However, back to the paper. We have now had refusals to stock us from quite a number of bookshops around the country (including an official refusal from W.H. Smith’s on the grounds that we wouldn’t sell fast enough to justify the space we would take up). So we still need you to visit your local bookshops and newsagents as our salesmen, to put these people in touch with us. The more daces you visit the easier it will be for all of us to communicate with each other, and that’s what it’s all about.

One or two people that we met thought the first issue a bit dry, but liked it in spite of that – in fact, the response generally has made the incredible amount of work well worthwhile. Of course, for some it was too radical, for some, too conservative, but you can’t please everybody all of the time. It seems especially difficult to please the Rad. Femmes; since deciding to run the pieces on the Spare Rib party and on what they are doing to G.L.F. generally they have tried to get us to postpone issue two, censor out our opinions of them and generally forget the whole thing. We have made space available in this issue for them to give their version of the events, but at the time of writing this, it has not arrived. It seems unduly hard to make them realise that other people besides themselves have things to say, like the nicer faction of G.L.F. who demonstrated outside the Earls Court pubs. Of course, the Rad, femmes did not support the main body of G.L.F. on this part of Gay Pride week; a prefect example of the selfish way this faction operates.

Anyway, one last thought to leave you with; if you buy the paper from one of the streetsellers in London, the person will most likely be one of us, the editorial collective, so if you’ve anything to say, any articles that other people might like to read, any criticism or encouragement let rip and we’ll do something about it.

See you around.

Where Your Paper Goes From Here

02-197206XX 1This is the second issue of Gay News. There is still a long way to go. Gay women do not feature anywhere near enough. There are many areas of the country we do not reach. There is not sufficient money in the kitty to expand either the size of the distribution of the paper. All these things may be remedied in time, but with your involvement the paper will become what you want it to be much faster. We of the collective only ever intended to give you the paper and let you decide what it should become – by writing, subscribing, donating, working with us and eventually supplanting us. But before we go any further we must look at what could stop the paper happening.

The most obvious barrier to the continuance and expansion of the paper is the legal situation. Technically, anything which helps bring gay men into contact with one another can be construed as unlawful, however well-meant the attempt. Any publication which openly discusses sex and sexuality, especially when related to gay men and women, might be judged obscene. It is this which has forced us to abandon, for the time being, our plan to print the story “Shirley Temple Knows”, which we promised you for this issue. It is this which forces us to reiterate that, although we will continue to run a personal ads column, we retain the right to refuse or amend them as we see fit and according to our legal advice. Any ad which states specific sexual tastes is likely to attract unfavorable attention from the law, whilst those which seek only companionship, friendship, or someone to share a flat or holiday, may not. We will take all the precautions we can to ensure that our advertisers are protected.

The second major barrier is, of course, money. We aren’t going to put up our prices or rates unless rising costs force us to, and so it is unlikely that the paper will ever make any significant profit. This means that there will only ever be a limited amount of cash in the kitty with which we can begin to expand the paper and it’s availability. If you think that what the paper is trying to do (by its very existence) – that is, end our isolation from one another and defend our way of life – is worthwhile, then the paper needs to be available over a much wider area than it is now, and it needs a much larger number of pages. And in order to do this we need money, so that the paper can be planned well ahead instead of existing from issue to issue. So this is an appeal for donations, large and small, backers, advertisers, etc., and anything any of you can do to help us find them. We know you’ve been asked for your money thousands of times before – only this time it isn’t so somebody can do something they want to, it is so that you can do something for all of us, for yourselves, all over the country. And that isn’t just a semantic difference.

It would also be incredibly helpful if one of you (at least) would come and join us full-time in order to work almost wholly on getting the paper around the country. There isn’t much money in it worry the name, just enough for survival, so it would have to be a labour of love. Would any lady or gentleman like the job?

Afterthoughts Editorial

The 1967 Confidence Trick (2)

02-197206XX 3(from page 3)

into doubt all the good work achieved by people who have no connection with obscene publications, but whose first desire is to create a caring and happy society. Fresh legislation is now imperative in the light of this recent development. – I am etc.
IAN C. DUNN, Chairman,
Scottish Minorities Group.

From The Evening Standard, 26th June, 1972.

 

NOW – A GAY PRIDE DEMO

Sir: Milton Shulman’s article ‘Dockers and Homosexuals’ accurately portrays the effects of the recent Appeals decision. Any ordinary person who has been involved in a trial cannot fail to be astounded at how out of touch with present reality most judges seem to be.

What the I.T. decision does is to put many persons, including myself, in peril of arrest, trial and umprisonment. On July 1, there will be a GayPride Demo in Trafalgar Square. The purpose of this clearly is to advocate homosexual practice for homosexuals and to protest against the continued oppression of homosexuals in our society, the 1967 Act notwithstanding. I, and other gay people will continue to defy this absurd law. To be arrested for advocating legal activity is something only a judge would appear not to find ludicrous. Let Parliament speedily remedy the situation or vote money to house a rapidly expanding prison population.

Warren Hague (address supplied)

 

The Guardian, 19th June, 1972

HOMOSEXUALS IN ISOLATION

Sir,
The law acknowledges the right of homosexuals to make love. By rejecting IT’s appeal, the House of Lords continues to support the law’s illogical refusal to allow homosexuals to meet. There an no circumstances under which they can meet. Not in the streets, which is importuning; not in properly conducted social clubs because none is allowed to exist.

Such repression encourages recourse to a few dubious pubs and furtive drinking clubs that cater for homosexuals; it encourages desperate efforts to make contact in public with the consequent risk of police prosecution. It encourages the growth of increasingly militant homosexual organisation. It throws and is throwing, an increasingly large burden on the Samaritans and other social service groups – the only people that the isolated homosexual knows he can turn to.

To use the Ladies Directory case (a list, I understand, of prostitutes) as a precedent for dealing with ordinary homosexual people is appalling enough. But their Lordships decision represents a major piece of discrimination against a section of the community that i,. numerically, larger than our coloured population. The House of Lords was dealing with one underground newspaper; their decision affects the very real needs of isolated people all over the country.
Yours faithfully,
ROGER BAKER
Flat F. 23 Great James Street
London WC1.

 

THE EVENING STANDARD
20th June, 1972.

GAY ADVERTISING

With regard to your news story (June 14) Lords in Clash on Gay Advert, I and the members of the Gay News, would like to point out that we will be carrying personal advertisements for gays of all sexes. We consider it the right of homosexuals to advertise in this way if they so wish, and can see no earthly reason why gays should not be able to do the same as heterosexuals. Hopefully, one day it will not be necessary for any people, no matter what their sexual preference, to advertise in this way. Until gays an free from the isolation imposed on them by society and people in general are released from the misguided taboos that surround sex and sexuality. Gay News will carry personal ads, no matter what the penalty.

Gay News is a national fortnightly paper for gay men and women and will he available this week. – DENNIS LEMON, Gay News, 19 London Street, W.2.

Imprint

THE GAY NEWS
EDITORIAL COLLECTIVE

  • 01-197205XX 1Richard Adams
    (design)
  • Martin Corbett
  • Ian Dunn
    (Scotland)
  • Denis Lemon
  • Glenys Parry
    (Manchester)
  • Doug Pollard
  • David Seligman

GAY NEWS SPECIAL FRIENDS

  • Roger Baker
  • Graham Chapman
  • John Chesterman
  • Lawrence Collinson
  • Martin Grant
  • Anthony Grey
  • Julian D. Grinspoon
  • Peter MacMillan
  • Suki J. Pitcher
  • Sylvia Room
  • Manus Sasonkin
  • David Sherlock
  • Martin Slavin
  • Jean-Claude Thevenin

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

  • Andrew & Peter
  • Jane & Shaun
  • Richard & Norman
  • Ken & Allan
  • Michael, Angus & Ken
  • and all the other
    Friends & Loved Ones.

CONTENTS

  • Editorial ___________________________ Page 2
  • Speakeasy __________________________ Page 3
  • Scotland ___________________________ Page 5
  • Sex Garage _________________________ Page 7
  • V.D. & Gays _________________________ Page 8
  • Heterosexual of the Month ________________ Page 9
  • No Freedom to Love ____________________ Page 9
  • Marlene Dietrich ______________________ Page 10
  • Personal Ads ________________________ Page 11
  • Information _________________________ Page 12

Gay News is published fortnightly by Gay News Limited
19 London Street, London W2 1HL. Telephone 01-402 7805

Printed by F.I.Litho Limited, 182 Pentonville Road, London N1.
Gay News is the registered Trade Mark of Gay News Limited

Editorial

01-197205XX 1Well, here it is, the first issue of Gay News. It is late and we are sorry about that, but we offer the first excuse and apology in the life of Gay News, and sincerely hope it won’t be the first of a long series. During the coming out of the paper almost everything that could go wrong did. To the people who were brave enough to risk their hard-earned cash an a pre-publication subscription, our very heartfelt thanks. Without you it could never have happened, without your help and support there wouldn’t have been a paper at all. For that we are very grateful, for the chance to bring out Gay News. Not just for ourselves, those of us at present working on the paper, but also for the many friends and helpers who have contributed (and put up with us), and the people who were, for a time, part of the genesis of what you are holding in your hand.

Gay News, as you will doubtless tire of hearing and reading after the first few issues, is not our paper, but yours; it belongs to the whole of the gay community. It’s for gay women as well as gay men. for transexuals and transvestites, for anyone with a sexual label but who we like to call “gays of all sexes”. The first issue alone cannot reach as far as it should into the gay community – to do that it needs your help – but in time we hope it will. Those of us involved in the paper, whether we’re still around or no longer into it, have always held to one unifying idea; that it isn’t and never will be enough just to produce a paper for gay people, we could only begin something, in this case the getting together of a newspaper, which would in the end belong to all gays.

In fact, it has often worried us that our action in bringing out Gay News could and possibly would be interpreted as doing something because we thought other people needed it. That’s not it. We feel that, despite legal reform and a certain relaxation in people’s attitudes to sexuality, that nothing much has really changed. It is clear that many gay people are still extremely isolated, many still live restricted lives. We feel that a medium which could help us all to know what we were all doing, which could put us in contact, and be open evidence of our existence and our rights for the rest of the people to see, could help start the beginning of the end of the present situation. And that goes for all of you who buy the paper as well as we who get it together. Maybe that sounds like another way of saying “we think you need it”, but surely it is only a recognition of how people and institutions through lack of tolerance and understanding, still make it difficult for most gay people to openly be themselves, to live their lives without fear of abuse, prejudice, and worse.

After all, gay people are the same as anyone else; whether you are part of the majority or one of the minorities, you are still people, wanting and needing to share news and information about what everyone else is doing, about what is going on among the others who have taken up a similar life-style. And for us especially, there is still a need to dispel and counteract much ignorance and misinformation. So far we seem to have accepted society’s definition of us as something that’s not very nice, to be seen perhaps but not heard. Isn’t that a little crazy? We are all people with our lives, our hopes, our fears and expectations for what life has in store for us. The beautiful, loving times, the not so joyous moments – this is what we are, and more – and isn’t that simply people? And to be isolated from what goes on in the world around us is not only wrong, it shows up some dangerous cracks in the society we live in.

So a few of us got together just before Christmas 1971, having come to the conclusion that a first step to rectifying this situation would be the creation of a newspaper, to provide news and entertainment, and a forum for all gays. By entertainment, we mean things that can be laughed at and enjoyed – we hope that Gay News will never be so completely serious that no-one could smile, laugh, or maybe happily cringe at parts of it. News is not only the bad things that can happen to us all, but knowing about what others are doing, sharing and achieving. Information is knowing where and when this is going on, so that if you have a mind to you could share in it. Why should’nt gay people know what each other are doing in whatever place it is, wherever you happen to live? But you can’t share in something you don’t know about.

By March, Gay News had an office, and from then on most of the collective business was carried on from there (not difficult on one side is a porn shop, on the other a pub, which seems to be a peculiarity of small newspaper offices in London). The main job then and through April was to let as many people as possible know of our intentions and to start to raise the capital to put the paper on a more definite basis. We wrote to many well-known and monied gays, asking for help and support, but unfortunately the response was rather small. But the subscriptions rolled in, and with the generous help of a few individuals the paper began to take shape.

The collective had now grown to about 15 men and women, some from Gay Liberation Front, some from Campaign for Homosexual Equality, a few worked very hard for Scottish Minorities Group, some were just gay individuals (and some not-so-gay) who felt that Gay News could be the start of something important.

Money has always been a problem, but by April other and possibly more important obstacles had appeared. Some of those involved began to have doubts, about the amount of work involved, about the compromises they would have to make with their own political and alternative ideals. Some of us became bored with this destructive soul-searching and lack of action on practicalities. Some of us despaired at the way in which we seemed so small and isolated a group to attempt the task of pulling together a newspaper, and about the lack of response and general wariness with which the whole venture was being treated, except for the adventurous prepared to risk a subscription and our few but generous contributors. There were a few heated rows, many tears, and a general air of disappointment and frustration. It seemed as though we wouldn’t be able to pull it off after all. So we suspended operations for a while until people made up their minds as to whether they or the paper would go on. In the end we did continue with a smaller collective, and you an holding the result.

We talk, and always will be doing, about the Gay News Collective. By collective, we mean the people who are presently engaged in getting the paper together. There is no editor, art director, sales manager or whatever, we are all equally responsible for everything, and by the same token, no one person is in a position of greater authority than any other. We feel this to be important; if this is to be a paper for all gays, then

Of course, the rows continue, but the situation is far healthier. We had been deceiving ourselves about the amount of work involved, we didn’t know how difficult it all was, but now we must just get on with it to the best of our collective abilities. Despite all that, the paper has become great fun, and looks like being more so in future issues. We can but hope.

it is impossible to lay down a given direction for the paper, and a collective arrangement without positions of authority reflects the flexibility we need and will hopefully have. No one person has any more say than anyone else, whether they are writing, designing, pasting down photographs or whatever. And this collective is completely open-ended; anyone interested enough to want to help produce and continue Gay News is welcome, no matter what their sex, politics, or any other quirks of personality. You’re welcome anyway, even if you want to drop by for a chat and a nose around the office but beware, it isn’t large enough for coach parties.

Gay News is based in London. There isn’t really any element of choice or design about this – London happens to be where most of us live and when we started getting it together. So in spite of the fact that we feel it’s wrong for so many things to be based in London, this is where the paper is produced, printed, and distributed from. But we hope the paper will never become just a London paper, covering only what the capital city is up to. People actively involved with the paper are spread over most of the country, admittedly fairly thinly at the moment, but with your help that will soon change (hint! hint!). Most active centres as far as work on the paper is concerned are Manchester, Edinburgh, and London, with possible developments in Eire and some of the county towns. With your help, we will print more information and news from more areas of the country, and with greater involvement from the homosexual community, Gay News could, can, and will become much more than it is now. This is only when we begin.

However, to return to the saga. May was the most hectic period in the paper’s short life. Printers had to be found, design finally decided upon, all the articles and information that had come to us had to be sorted, and the shape and content of the first few issues planned. We have also had to arrange our own distribution, as our dear friends W. H. Smith and Sons weren’t over anxious to touch us, and distributors like Moore-Harness could not be used because of the cost, but with the help of a friendly bookshop in Brighton we have tied to spread the paper over as much of the country as possible. In the very near future we hope it’ll be easier to get the paper from your local bookshop or in the gay pubs and clubs in your town. And if you have any ideas about a bookshop round your way that might sell us and doesn’t, you have only to drop us a line and we’ll write to him or her.

So far that gives you several things to think about – the news and information that you can send us to print, the letters and comments you have to write so that we know what you think, the bookshop round the comer that might be one more outlet  – and that is what we mean when we say it’s your paper. None of there things we can do for you – we an asking you to do them for us. for yourselves, for your paper. Gay News will not have any single viewpoint, nor will it be aligned to any gay movement. It is open to all to use it as a medium of news and expression. We will try, for our part, to be honest and objective about what goes into the paper, and in what we put there ourselves.

Thank you very much for your patience, thank you very much for buying the copy you are reading. From now on it’s all yours. The paper belongs to everyone.

IT lose House of Lords appeal

01-197205XX 4STOP PRESS.. ..

No-one, no matter how many gowns and wigs they wear, degrees and titles they hold, has any moral right to dictate to anyone how they shall find their lovers. For the majority, it is quite rightly accepted that the law cannot tell you to remain in isolation. But the law has now finally decided that it can and it will impose both these restrictions on the gay people in this country – the law in the shape of the House of Lords has decided that International Times was breaking the law in publishing small ads for gays. In other words, it might be legal for two consenting adults to go to bed together, but it’s illegal to do anything in order to “promote” the occurence of this.

The law does not realise that it is not a case of “promoting” bizarre sexual practices – it is in fact a case of helping people who are kept in isolation by their social and legal situation to find one another and perhaps bring love into their lives. Homosexuality is, after all, about love, as is any other form of sexuality. Heterosexuals are allowed to contact one another in any way they wish – small ads, computers, specially designed magazines – in order to break any isolation they might find themselves in, but we are expected to be martys to an antiquated mode of thought and legal system which has so far given us one inadequate crumb of comfort, with which we are supposed to creep back into our caves and ghettoes and be grateful. Well were not, and we wont be until the law reflects the facts – that we are people the same as anyone else, that we are not carriers of some contagious “perversion”, that we love and live much like anyone else and have a perfect right to do so.

And as for the false distinction everyone is intent on drawing between love and sexual activity – what is wrong with sex for the sake of it? It is a normal healthy appetite like any other which needs feeding like any other. Granted it’s nicer (we think) with someone you love, but it’s also fun with anyone who attracts you. Surely no-one still hangs on to the recrimination and guilt which has been woven about sex and has led so many people into either hypocrisy or frustration throughout their whole lives?

But there it is – the situation is clearly worsening for us; this present case is only another stage in the repression we suffer. Entrapment is increasing at a frightening rate – after arresting 120 guys in two cottages in the short space of two months in Harrow, protests where made and the local council warned the police off. But did this deter them? They are now doing much the same things on the same sort of scale in nearby Watford. Such instances are not special or isolated, but typical.

Our small ads column is still there, and will continue to be. With a little care on your part and ours we can steer a course round the law, or perhaps through it. Love may laugh at locksmiths – it also laughs at laws.

Gay News Emergency Editorial.