Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

All Bettes Are Off: Bette Midler Has Been Adored by Gay Audiences for Her Entire Career. So Why Is She So Wishy-Washy about Supporting Same-Sex Marriage?

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

All Bettes Are Off: Bette Midler Has Been Adored by Gay Audiences for Her Entire Career. So Why Is She So Wishy-Washy about Supporting Same-Sex Marriage?

Article excerpt

Once upon a time, before it was chic to befriend gay men, Bette Midler worked in gay bathhouses and went on national TV and talked about it. Gays swarmed to her side, and not long after, the Divine Miss M was sashaying her way to throngs of gay fans and quickly becoming an icon and advocate for the community. But that was then--nearly three decades ago. Nowadays the vivacious entertainer does what she can to dodge questions about gay marriage, seemingly more concerned with not making waves than with the equal rights of a good chunk of her fan base.

Case in point: On Larry King Live last November, Midler failed to lend her public support to same-sex marriage, questioned gay men's interest in monogamy, and spouted her prudish, parental remarks regarding the famous Britney-Madonna kiss.

Soon after the King interview, a letter in support of gay marriage surfaced on the Internet, supposedly written by Midler. She quickly denied being the author.

Midler, who gave the following interview during a recent press junket for her upcoming film The Stepford Wives, seems to have forgotten that her most loyal fans--those whose support has given her four-decade career its success and buoyancy--are gay. It seems we've lost Bette's wind beneath our wings. --Ryan MacDonald

Can I get a gay marriage quote?

As soon as I'm gay I'm going to get married. What do you want me to say? You want me to talk about my letter that I didn't write?

What was up with that?

I don't know. …

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