Your Letters Cont.

03-197207XX-09Continued from Page 2

Littlehampton,
Sussex.

Dear Friends,

Why oh why must the minority of gay campaigners always use foul language, clown-tactics and general public rudeness? to put our case (what is our case)? over. We (the majority) don’t want it done this way.

You will find that the majority of gay people argue their way of love with calm, sensible reason. Public bodies, i.e.: Central Government, Local Government. Police and social services etc; would rather listen to sensible suggestions and requests than take heed of ‘Gay-Circus’.

Instead of constantly criticising and giving abuse to Court and Government decisions, no matter how unjust, why not try appeals, reasoned public support.

If law is unjust or a bad one then the public will have it changed, in time. Don’t treat the public as a moronic TV audience, but get about and inform them of the facts, as we see them, ask, politely, for their help. It is amazing how many people, when informed of a wrong, will give help and advice. All it takes is a PLEASE, some thing that seems to be lacking.

Why are the gay organisations segrating us from our fellow man and woman? We’re not zoo specimens, we are ordinary, yes ordinary, humans who want to live life our way, and love our way. Segregation will NOT bring public recognition of our way of life. We MUST mix, we cannot make ourselves into an island.

Why are there not more reports from CHE and CHE groups? Have these groups no Press Officers, or are they just plain lazy? There seems to be too much GLF reporting in Gay News. An organisation that does more harm than good to our campaign, it seems their one aim is to cause trouble. Does GLF now stand for: ‘Get Lost FREEDOM’? I would hate to see Gay News turn into a ‘revolutionary rag’. At the moment this news paper is what is just wanted by the more moderate majority, but please be very careful.

Remember, preach calm, reason and tolerance and we WILL win much much more support. It takes time but then thats life.

Kindest regards
Norman Redman.

 

Monday 10th July.

The Campaign for Homosexual Equality has sent the following letter to United States senator George McGovern.

Dear Senator McGovern,

We are much encouraged by the pledge you have given to work for full rights for homosexuals. We urge you to resist all pressures to drop this pledge from your programme or to accord it a lower priority.

Homosexuals are discriminated against and oppressed in nearly every country in the world and any action in obtaining full civil rights for homosexuals in any one country contributes to their struggle all over the world. We in Britain have been greatly encouraged by your adoption of our cause. We earnestly hope that at this stage you will not abandon it.

Many of us sincerely hope that you will obtain the Democratic nomination and be elected President of the United States. That you will use the office to liberate social injustices that oppress them.

We wish you well.

 

CHALLENGE
6 Dauphine Court
Spencer Road
Wealdstone
Harrow

17th July, 1972

Dear Gay News.

I was very interested to read in your first issue about the furore which appeared to have developed over GLF’s representation on Jimmy Savile’s Homosexual Speakeasy program, and particularly of Michael Butler’s unfortunate involvement in this seemingly underhand business.

We were pleased to have eight members there and naturally we plugged Challenge. GLF’s only representation, out of their thousands of supporters, were three people who managed to squeeze in because they happened to be involved with Gay News.

At Challenge we were bewildered by Michael Butler’s letter:

“The BBC rang and asked me to find thirty gay people as representatives of as many gay organisations and groups as I know, excepting Gay Lib. They also talked about something called “Challenge” which I assumed to be a Gay Liberation Front venture”.

On March 16 our Secretary sent Michael Butler a letter which stated our aims and intentions very clearly. When he greeted us at the Speakeasy recording he apologised for not replying and for not taking up our invitation to come and speak at one of our meetings, so he knew what Challenge was at that time.

The suggestion that he thought “something called Challenge” was a “Gay Liberation Front venture” might possibly placate GLF by implying that in inviting Challenge he thought he was not really excluding GLF. But if one doesn’t think it right to exclude a group as large as GLF then why on earth have any part in the BBC’s plan to do so?

Love and peace.
Hugh.

 

111a High Road.
Leyton,
LONDON,
E.15 2DF

27th June, 1972.

Dear Sir:

I don’t think I am far wrong in stating that the majority of “straights” think of homosexual’s as half-men, half-women, or men who want to be women, and visa versa.

So what does GLF do? They, above everyone else, confirm the attitude and opinion of the straights by encouraging their members to come to meetings, disco’s, gay-days, and demos, etc, in drag. What for? Only GLF knows.

I was once a regular attendant at most of the London GLF meetings. One in particular was the Disco at the White Lion in Putney. But I was completely shaken, confused and (yes) shocked by what I saw. Boys wearing false-eyelashes and bright red lipstick, some even in complete drag. And men with beards and moustaches wearing women’s dresses and a baloon or pillow up the front to stimulate pregnancy. This was too much for me and I had to get away.

Now let me get one thing clear. I am not anti-transvestite. To each his own, and I would not dream of imposing my own set of morals on anyone. Let everyone do their own thing. I don’t imprison anyone. Because, like the straights, if you imprison others, you also imprison yourself. Nor do I see any harm in a bloke dressed as a bird. It’s not wrong. It’s not right. It just is. But why come to GLF and put back the cause of homosexuals 200 years or more?

We all know that every man has homosexual tendencies. That is no surprise to anyone. But if we, as homosexuals, are to be taken seriously, we have to appeal to the straights latent homosexuality. But if they think that by “coming out” of their plastic shells that they too, will become half-women, half-men, then they will NEVER come out .. and we will never be free to live our lives the way we want to live them in our own natural and beautiful way.

For God’s sake, GLF, wake up! And do what’s right. To help ourselves, we have to help others to understand us. It is just as important to learn what not to do, than what to do.

I think the whole idea of GLF needs to be pulled down and re-shaped. Throw out the pot-smoking freaks who are no help to anyone, let alone themselves, and be a bit more, if I may say so, professional.

So, members of GLF who like coming in drag, the next time there is a public demo, think before you attend it in drag. Ask yourself: “Is this really the way to be accepted? I have no doubt that it ISN’T the way.
With Love and Hope,

Wolf von Jurgen

 

The Family Planning Association.
Margaret Pyke House.
Mortimer Street, London W1A 4QW
12th July, 1972.

Dear Sirs,

I should be grateful if you would let me have a copy of your new publication.

II am especially interested in the article “The Twilight World of the Heterosexual”. (Gay News No.1)

Yours faithfully.
W.G.Smith,
Press Secretary.

Your Letters

02-197206XX 8ALL LETTERS RECEIVED BY GAY NEWS ARE LIABLE TO BE PUBLISHED UNLESS YOU STATE OTHERWISE.


BCM/PETREL
London WC1.
24th June 1972.

Dear Gay News,
Yesterday I was able to by Gay News AT LAST. It was worth waiting for. The look of it is very professional and the content positive and provocative. Long may you continue and prosper.

Re your Speak-Easy spat. Sappho was invited too and I was the ‘wise child’ who asked the producer if he was gay. For someone who is forty plus I found this an excuse for an elegant ego-trip! We were under the impression as the recording was being held in the National Youth Clubs Centre we would have had the stimulating experience of discussing homosexuality with young people. To discover that the audience for the programme was also the tight little group of homosexuals representing various gay organisations was a big sell and the closet atmosphere of the ‘studio’ did not enhance the occasion. This was no jault of the gays present but the responsibility of those organising the programme. To segregate homosexuals from heterosexuals is absolutely against the aims and objects of Sappho. However we stayed because the opportunity for peak time programming for homosexuals is non-existant. Hearing the programme afterwards certainly made it worthwhile because we sounded like a large audience as well as sounding off. Sappho has made a large number of new contacts, who were despairing and isolated. I must take issue with Doug Pollard glossing over the GLF scene on the previous Speakeasy programme about homosexuality. GLF were totally disruptive – or I should say one or two individual members of GLF were – to the exclusion of other gays getting a word in. I admire so much that GLF does and contribute to many of their actions and am present at their demonstrations, but I despair of those individuals whos turn up at events organised by others than GLF is quite understandable and was caused by rogue members of GLF themselves.

Thank you for advertising Sappho on your back information page. May I point out that we are a magazine not a paper. We also hold meetings every first Monday in the month at the Museum Tavern 7.30pm Upstairs room, Great Russell Street, London WC1 and all women are welcome to hear speakers. discuss the magazine and air their own views. The price for individual copies has gone up to .25p plus postage, but the subscriptions remain the same, £1.50 for 6 months, £3.00 for 12 months including postage.

Love and peace
Jackie Forster
Editor of SAPPHO

 

Birmingham.
23rd June, 1972.

Dear Gay News Staff & Friends,
Your newspaper gave me delightful reading, as it was in good taste and good sense.

It is a welcome newspaper, as in todays society a needed source.

All the best of luck in the future.

Mis P.A…………

 

London N.W.3.
27th June, 1972.

Dear Gay News,
Thank you for the letter and please pass on my thanks to all the staff of Gay News. I bought a copy yesterday and read it through twice and enjoyed it immensely. I intend to send you my subscription at the end of the week, to make sure (in a little way) that Gay News carries on.

It is very good that Gay People, like myself, have now got their own paper. Cheers.

Love Nick C…………

P.S. Liked the ads.

 

London W.2.
20th June, 1972.

Dear Gay News,
I have frequently wondered about Gay News, because as a ‘local’ I often pass 19 London St. and now the Evening Standard has confirmed my suspicions. I am delighted! I should be pleased to hear about your activities and I should also like to become an immediate subscriber to Gay News.

Ian M…………

 

Middlesex.
27th June, 1972.

Dear Gay News,
I was rather touched by your letter to the editor of the ‘Evening Standard’, in which you aptly referred to ‘Lords in Clash on Gay Advert’, and wish to take out a personal advertisement in Gay News, but I am rather haunted and terrified if possible blackmail, Is there any way to eliminate the risk if blackmail in this respect?

Also, I would very much like to obtain a copy of your latest edition of Gay News, and would be very grateful for any help you may render in this respect.

S.A…………

 

Sussex.
23rd June, 1972

Dear All at G.N.,
Have just received my first copy of Gay News. I found it very interesting with varied reading for all.

How about a monthly crossword? And might I suggest that you write to all or some of the County Councils and see if they will take out subscriptions for their library reading rooms, and so put G.N. along-side the national papers etc.? I will be contacting my local council to see if we can put it in our library, and will send you their reply.

Look forward to number two, keep up the GOOD work. Will also send you a donation in due course.

Norman R………………

 

There was no address,
and we couldn’t read
the postmark.
27th June, 1972.

Dear Boys,
I am very disappointed with Gay News, and before you can expect to build up a ‘readership’ you’ll have to not only improve your articles, but also employ an on-the-ball proof reader.

The quality of the paper is good, and I have no doubt that everyone worked extremely hard – but such co-operation and talent (?) you must be capable of doing better.

Look forward to issue no.2 before subscribing.

Yours etc.
Paul X.

P.S. Incidentally – should any of your readers be holidaying in Marbella (Spain) there are two bars worth visiting – Cozzi’s International and El Boccacio.

 

Cottaging in Br. Columbia

or The Mountie Always Gets His Man

(Being excerpts from a letter from Roedy Green, dated 16th April, ’72)

02-197206XX 8You wanted some information on Cottaging. First of all I should make it clear that there is a very strong prejudice in western Canada against this practice. On top of the status heap are those who meet through private “parties”. Next come the club people. Next come the steambath people. Next come the outdoor cruising people, and on the bottom of the heap come the cottagers.

I think that the disdain with which the practice is viewed has a lot to do with the wide variety of other methods available. People who meet in cans must do so because they like cans – perhaps it is the smell that rouses their lusty emotions.

Police cruising of cans (even in an official sense) is minimal. In all my time I have never heard of anyone being arrested or even harrassed by police in cans. The one exception happened about ten years ago (I remember being somewhat horrified as a child) when the police broke up a huge orgy in one of the washrooms in Stanley Park. About 30 people were arrested but there was no further mention of it.

The most active can is the Hudson’s Bay downtown store on the 2nd and 5th floors (two separate places actually). One old gentleman goes there with two shopping bags. His intended is invited to enter his stall and stand with one foot in each bag while he blows him. I have never personally witnessed this event.

The reason this can is popular is that underage boys go there quite innocently and of course meet some older man. They keep returning there as they feel that is the only place that homosexual satisfaction can be had, and of course the dear old lechers keep them in ignorance.

Pme ptjer sprt pf cp
One other sort of cottagley thing is the bathhouse a few blocks from my house on English Bay. It is a cement structure that used to be the public aquarium that overlooks the beach. It is built partly under the road that runs under the beach giving it the look of some oversized hobbit warren.

The beach area of course is Vancouver’s main outdoor cruising ground (save Wreck Beach in summer). But at about 3 in the morning the steps of the bathhouse become the scene of an outdoor orgy with perhaps 4 couple doing their assorted things in plain view to the gawking spectators.

That is all I know about cottaging – no, one more savory detail – and this one was even researched in person (though I maintained my detached observer status throughout). When the student union building was being designed at UBC, someone thought
student
that students needed a place to rest during the day to refresh themselves for the late night labs perhaps. At any rate they installed dark rooms off the cans filled with about 12 huge leather couch-like beds. For some reason most of the beds were removed until there were only 3 left. After hearing about a friend of mine who claims to have had sex in these rooms with 5 different people in one day (he went in for the ten minute break between classes), I decided in moral indignation to investigate. It is true.