Imprint

GAY NEWS

Joint Editors and Members of the Editorial Collective
Richard Adams (Design), Martin Corbett, Ian Dunn (Scotland), Charlotte Corday, Bob Fletcher, Julian D. Grinspoon, Peter Holmes, David Hart, Denis Lemon, Alastair MacDougall, Glenys Parry (Manchester), Suki J. Pitcher, Clive Kennard, David Seligman, Julie Frost, and Graham Chapman, David Sherlock.

GAY NEWS SPECIAL FRIENDS

Roger Baker, Denis Cohn, Barry Conley, Lawrence Collinson, Brian Dax, Martin Grant, Antony Grey, Peter MacMillan, Manus Sasonkin.

SPECIAL THANKS TO:

Richard & Norman, Ken & Allan, Angus, John, Stanley, Peter, Anthony, David, Ken, Wolf and all the other Friends & Loved Ones.

CONTENTS

Obvious Page 2 Cruising Page 10
News Page 3-6 Nostalgia Page 11
Letters Page 6 Books Page 12
Feedback Page 7 Films Page 13
Biograph Page 8 Records Page 14
Gay House Rock Page 9 Personal Ads Page 15

Gay News is published fortnightly by Gay News Ltd., 19 London Street, London W2 1HL. Tel 01-402 7805.
Distribution: Us, You and a prayer book. Typesetting by Sandi Rutenberg
Printed by F.I.Litho Limited, 182 Pentonville Road, London N1.
Gay News is the registered Trade Mark of Gay News Ltd.

Editorial

The last few months seem to have passed extremely quickly, for here we are at our 10th issue. We’re as surprised as we are sure some of you must be. Nevertheless we’re rather pleased and hope that we will be around for some time to come. And we would never have come this far if it hadn’t been for you — our readers. You persevered with us through our amateurish first few issues, providing the encouragement and criticism we so badly needed. You were undaunted by the fact that issue 3 was a week late arriving. And were apparently impressed enough with our first 16 page edition (GN6) to help almost sell out our following issue. Now your articles and comments help fill and improve each 16 page edition we regularly bring out.

More Expansion

To tell the truth, we are beginning to find that 16 pages is a little restricting. If all goes well in the next couple of months we expect to go up to 20 pages. But we don’t want to rush into anything we may not yet be able to fully cope with, so we’ll change when we feel competent enough to keep to a consistent standard.

Reviews and The Arts

We hope that you find the review section of the paper comprehensive. We have tried to establish pages for most forms of commercial entertainments and will attempt to enlarge the areas already covered as the paper grows in size. But we would consider it too wasteful to expand this area of the paper any further at this stage. As news and articles become more forthcoming we will be able to grow with the amount of material available. Also we’ll want to keep you informed and up to date with all that is happening in the arts, whether commercial or otherwise. If you have any comments to make on the coverage we give at the moment, please let us know. And we welcome reviews from the areas we don’t yet include. Gay people seem to have a greater awareness of these things, perhaps some of you would like to tell us, in your opinion, why? Or maybe you disagree entirely. Let’s hear from you either way.

SELFRIDGES
OXFORD STREET
                           10th October, 1972.
Gay News,
19, London Street,
LONDON, W.2.

Dear Sir,

         Thank you for your letter of 22nd September and the three copies of your newspaper "Gay News", which is of no interest to me.

         I would like to point out that, under no circumstances, are Selfridges to be quoted on any publications.

                    Yours faithfully,
                    for SELFRIDGES LIMITED

                    T. S. Gregory
                    Buyer.

Not All Gayness

Because Gay News is primarily for homosexual people it has been only natural that the pages of our first editions have been usually filled with gayness of one sort or another. But gay people, like heterosexual people, are interested in everything that goes on around them in this world. So now that we have estab lished ourselves to a certain extent we feel that it would only be right to feature articles on matters that are not just significantly gay in content. In the future we will feature items of general interest and their inclusion will be judged solely on their literary and interest merits. No doubt you will be in touch with us if you think we are altering the paper too much or too quickly. Remember, we are no different or better in reality to ‘straight people, so it would be wrong to be continuously concerned with our own sexual preferences to the exclusion of everything else.

Open To All

Gay News is certainly not averse to criticism, we would never have made it this far without it. But some of you, when criticising or objecting to a particular article, tend to think that just one item is determining the general policy of GN. This is not so. In our pages you will find many differing opinions on equally diverse subjects. Many of them written by contributors not closely associated with the editorial collective, if at all. As the paper is open to all of you, it is bound to happen that you will strongly object to some points of view. But we like to think our pages are open to more than just a few types of people or opinions. This is a position that few other papers enjoy, that of being a completely unbiased newspaper, that is attempting to make itself interesting and informative to well over 6 million gay men and women, and to all the heterosexuals who want to gain a true understanding of us. Perhaps ‘straight’ society could do with such a medium, they don’t appear to have one at the moment. Most national newspapers for instance seem, if not openly, to be the organ of communication for one definite viewpoint or political stand. Gay News isn’t, it’s for all people, no matter what their own personal convictions are. Or rather, it is if you want it to be.

Same Old Story

In the columns of this editorial you will see a letter we received from Selfridges, after approaching them to stock Gay News in their periodical department. We were rather taken aback with the reply, so we rang them up. The gentleman who signed the letter was a lot calmer on the telephone and told us that the store was not continuing to stock magazines and papers that didn’t sell above a certain percentage. We mentioned that we hadn’t yet been stocked by them, and we were informed that they were not taking on any new publications and also had no room for them anyhow. We at GN have heard that before and have come to realise that there are reasonable refusals and that there are excuses, ranging from clever through to paranoid. Read their letter and judge for yourselves. If you come to the same conclusion that we have, perhaps you would always make a point of asking the periodicals department of Selfridges for a copy of GN whenever you are visiting the store.(One wonders what would happen it all the gay customers and staff of this long-established emporium stayed away for a while.) Please keep on asking for us at W.H. Smiths too, it provokes some wonderful reactions, some of them unprintable.

In conclusion, thanks from all of us to each and every one of you for making this 10th issue possible. We’ll try our utmost not to let you down.

Your Letters

Please note that any letters received by us at Gay News
unless you state otherwise.

Not All Cock-Happy

Finchley

Dear Gay News,

Philip’s letter (GN8) on those bloody mincing unwashed queens greatly cheered me.

These people seem to delight in offending people generally and do nothing but harm to the homosexual cause.

It has been largely due to these gyrating freaks that we have so long been regarded as peculiar in every way.

I, like Philip, am gay and proud of it, but for the greater part of every day, live what I regard as a normal existence.

My main objection to the so-called liberation groups is that they seem to be obsessed with the sexual side of life and create the public image that we are all sexual perverts.

Their time would be better spent, and our cause better served, if they’d stop flaunting their ‘differences’ and merge with society generally like other minorities such as redheads, lefthanders and the Lord Longfords of this world.

I would be glad to hear from other like-thinking ‘friends’ to see if there is anything we can do to redress the balance and bring reasoned pressure to bear on the powers that be to let us live the lives we have a right to.

Let’s set up a force that will show people we are not all exhibitionists or cock-happy.

J. B. Marr
6 Stanhope Avenue
Finchley N3 3LX


Lurking in Public

Cheltenham.

Dear Gay News,

It may interest your readers to know that the following is happening in this borough.

In a certain public convenience a ‘member of the general public’ is to be found, apparently waiting his turn to go into the cubicle. At the first sign of anything even remotely sexual, he becomes abusive and nips upstairs to fetch a waiting constable.

At this point the culprit (or victim, depending on one’s point of view) is ‘invited’ into the nearest police station. Depending on whether the culprit is a big fish or a little fish he is now subjected to ‘heavy patronage’ before being allowed to go free, or hauled before the magistrates court and charged with insulting behaviour to a member of the general public.

The prosecuting officer makes no attempt to put this ‘member of the general public’ on view in the court.

So my friends, beware of that lurking ‘member of the general public’ is the moral of this letter.

It appears we are still the most persecuted minority in this country.

J.A.


Screaming Queens

London EC13

Dear Gay News,

This is just to tell Phillip (GN8) how much I sympathise with him about the screaming queens giving a totally false picture of gays in general. There is, in fact, all the difference in the world between them and us, since they want men because they fantasise themselves as women, and are thus pseudo-heterosexuals, while a true homosexual wants his or her own sex because that’s the way he/she is, and a good way it is to be, too.

Surely CHE is the organisation he is looking for: if he finds it a bit too sedate, he could liven it up. It is dedicated to the acceptance of homos into society, and he sounds just the sort of person it needs.

Michael Harth


Personal Ads Discrimination

Dear Gay News,

Replying to your invitation to comment on letters about the small ads (Gay News No 7) of course there is something wrong with stating a preference for a “hairy homo Hindu”. It would be racialist and discriminatory.

But it would be inconsistent to refuse to print it, because, as your correspondent points out, most of the ads are equally discriminatory. On the other hand it is certainly expedient to refuse ads that are clearly a front for prostitution and expediency justifies the refusal.

Almost all the discrimination expressed by advertisers is irrational, especially when relating to physical qualities. It is a platitude that race and colour are irrelevant to a person’s character, and they are equally neutral in regard to beauty.

Preference for an oriental, for instance, would only make sense if the person concerned was indoctrinated with the Thoughts of Mao tse-Tung, thus affecting his or her outlook on life. People cannot be judged by whether their credentials match up to advertised criteria which merely limit the field. But the small ads are as entertaining as the editorial pages, and at least one, from John Hiscock, is puzzlingly obscure. Is it just a vague (and costly) expression of goodwill to all readers7

J.E.


Gay Ads Vanish

Teddington.

Dear Gay News.

As a regular reader of the musical weekly ‘Melody Maker’ I noticed over the past year an increasing amount of gay ads appearing in the personal column. One could find at least a dozen ads in each edition then suddenly — no gay ads at all!

Obviously pressure has been brought to bear — but from where? Was it internal or external and why?

As the Melody Maker has a circulation of several hundred thousand, mostly young people, I think it vital that the matter is investigated.

A. Dickenson


Success Makes Enemies??

Campaign for Homosexual Equality,
Manchester Student Group,
c/o The Treasurer,
81 Egerton Rd.,
Manchester 14.

Dear Gay News,

I suppose CHE has been too successful not to have made some enemies. It seems from the misleading propaganda in issue 8 that Gay News wants to be one of them.

Peter Kelsey states that CHE members must be over 21. This is untrue. I joined at 20, and am treasurer of one of CHE’s groups for students and young people which play a big part in the organisation. Why did your editorial comment not correct this?

In Doug Pollard’s snide review of CHE’s Radio London programme he declares that marriage can’t work for anyone. This is dictatorial. People, gay or het, should be free to try stable relationships if they want to.

Denis Lemon states that CHE ‘is very much against cottaging’. Yet on the same page is an article by Bernard Greaves, member of CHE’s Executive Committee, about his Campaign against police harassment of cottagers. CHE has also issued a card advising people on their rights if arrested while cottaging.

Lemon also complains that the CHE national office did not supply information about gay rendezvous in Norwich to a telephone enquirer. If he had bothered to find out CHE’s version of the incident he would have found that such information is just not kept in the office. The enquirer could easily have joined CHE’s local group there if he had really wanted to.

Despite its length, I hope you will print this letter to set the record straight and to show that you are not hopelessly biased.

best wishes,

R. J Elbert

ED: As Gay News does not pretend to be the organ of any movement or party, its columns are open to anyone who wants to write for it (including you,R. J. Elbert).

So the opinions expressed in articles, which we do our best to check out, are those of the people whose name appears in the by-line on that article. If you think there is any anti-CHE bias in Gay News we’d like to point out that the Campaign for Homosexual Equality cannot even be bothered to send us a copy of its regular bulletin. Also, you seem to be under the illusion that we are biased against your organisation, in the same way that some members of the Gay Liberation Front tell us that we are towards their movement.

We remain the only unaligned gay information paper in Britain. And CHE, like everyone else, is welcome to use our columns.


Our Failure?

Dear Friends,

…I think Gay News is the best paper on the market at the moment, it’s straight to the point. Only one complaint though – there isn’t enough in it about Lesbians, or if you would prefer female gays.

Love, peace, freedom,
and happiness to all gays.

Betty

ED: We know that this is our outstanding failure so far, but sisters, we need your help if this situation is to change.


The Other Ads

Mountain Ash,
Glamorgan

Dear Gay News,

I am very glad to see we at last have a newspaper of our own, not just another pin-up mag. I appeal to all gays and liberal minded people to support it in any way they can, by advertising, not just personal ads. By using it to Buy / Sell. Houses / Flats / cars / any new or secondhand goods, and by using the employment section. Also by recommending it, and by giving it to all your gay friends.

Roger E Hawkins

Your Letters continued on page 6.