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A Tragic Story

Tom Doyle is facing the loss of the home he shared with his partner, Bill Cornwell for 55 years because although Cornwell left everything to him, the relatives are contesting the will and claim that the two men were “just friends.” This is a terrible illustration of why marriage rights are so important. Nobody should have to go through this kind of awfulness after the death of a partner.

“We were talking about getting married,” Doyle said. “Bill even sent away for two rings. But we’d have to make two trips, one for the license and one for the ceremony, and we were both north of 85. And after a lifetime together, marriage doesn’t mean that much.”

from the article, “Relatives of Gay Man Who Passed Away Seek to Evict His Partner of 55 Years.”

Posted in Socio-politics.

How can this man sleep at night?


We are saddened and horrified by Martin Shkreli. From the Gawker article (emphasis ours):

“…after raising the cost of a life-saving pill by 5,000 percent, Turing CEO Martin Shkreli is loudly telling the world to fuck off.

Only a bad guy from Captain Planet could come up with a more brazenly amoral business scheme: Turing Pharmaceuticals purchased the rights to Daraprim, a 62-year-old drug used to treat toxoplasmosis, a parasitic affliction that affects tens of millions in the U.S. alone. Daraprim is particularly important for AIDS and cancer patients, whose weakened immune systems are ravaged by toxoplasmosis. Shkreli has now directly, intentionally switched the drug from affordable to insanely out of reach…”

We are also disgusted that the name of Alan Turing could be in any way associated with Turing Pharmaceuticals, Shkreli’s blood soaked, predatory drug company.

Loosely related:

Posted in Socio-politics.

Today is an historic day!


Read the full court decision.


Posted in Socio-politics.

Robert De Niro’s Gay Father

Four Figures, Robert De Niro

It’s always a surprise to read that someone famous is talking about having grown up with a gay parent, and Robert De Niro – in typical fashion – is doing it in a big way. The documentary he made about his father, “Remembering the Artist, Robert De Niro, Sr.,” will air for the first time on HBO in June, and there is a lot of media attention around the film, some of it specifically around the element of De Niro Sr.’s homosexuality. Having not seen the film yet we do not know how much screen time will be dedicated to Robert De Niro Sr.’s homosexuality or the impact that had on his family, but obviously it informed all of his artistic work, and had a profound impact on his son.

De Niro’s own words on the topic are all worth reading, particularly his interview with OUT Magazine, in which his regret over failures in communication come through with heartbreaking clarity.


If I may return to some of the things you read from the diaries in the documentary, your father said he felt like being an artist was an “affliction,” and he thought being gay was a sort of affliction. Do you think he was conflicted about his life’s passion?

About his homosexuality? Yeah, he probably was, being from that generation, especially from a small town upstate. I was not aware, much, of it. I wish we had spoken about it much more. My mother didn’t want to talk about things in general, and you’re not interested when you’re a certain age. Again, for my kids, I want them to stop and take a moment and realize that you sometimes have to do things now instead of later, because later may be 20 years from now — and that’s too late.

The paining at the top of this post is Robert De Niro, Sr.’s Four Figures, c. 1977
Oil on canvas, 30 1/4 x 51 1/4 inches

More of De Niro’s work can be seen on the website for DC Moore Gallery, which will be curating a show of his work for the third time this June.

Posted in Arts and Literature, Personal Stories.

Born this way?


The article, No One is Born Gay (or Straight): Here Are 5 Reasons Why, posted on Social (In)Queery, presents a very sophisticated position on the complexities of sexual orientation, and refreshingly distinguishes between gender identity and sexual orientation. It is crucially important to let go of the assumptions that an individual’s identity dictates which category of other people that individual will be attracted to, and it’s encouraging to see this sexist heteronormative assumption dismantled.

From the article:

At the end of the day, what we can count on is that the science of sexual orientation will produce data that simply mirror the most crass and sexist gender binarisms circulating in the popular imagination. This research will report that women are innately more sexually fluid than men, capable of being turned-on by almost anything and everything (hmmm…. other than in Lisa Diamond’s research, where have I seen that idea before? Ah yes, heterosexual pornography.) It will report that men are sexually rigid, their desires impermeable. It will tell us that straight men simply cannot be aroused by men and that gay men are virtually hardwired to be repulsed by the thought of sex with women. Regardless of what else we might say about the soundness of these studies, what is evident to me is that they have been used to authorize many a straight man’s homophobia, and many a gay man’s misogyny.

The historical perspective laid out in the article is particularly useful, and I hope that someday we can evolve to a point where we can recognize the validity of different manifestations of human sexuality, without having to reduce the discussion to the simplistic black and white of choice versus biological imperative. All of us are products of a complex blend of genetic material and psychological and socio-cultural factors.

Posted in Socio-politics.