A Flood, a Wolf, and Gays: Playwright Tim Maddock Wants People to Think about the Discrimination He Encountered after Katrina, Particularly toward a Dog Named Pete

Article excerpt

When actor Tim Maddock saw the r television images of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina, he decided to travel from his home in Los Angeles back to the place where he had first embraced his gay identity on a memorable spring break 14 years earlier. A lifelong dog owner, Maddock volunteered for a nonprofit group that searches for pets left behind in disasters.

Now on the first anniversary of his search-and-rescue mission, Maddock is featured in a play based on his experiences in New Orleans. A major story line in Because They Have No Words, which runs through October 1 at the Lounge Theater in Los Angeles, traces Maddock's battle to save an animal that is half wolf and half dog found wandering an empty street. Another volunteer wanted to shun the hybrid, seeing it as unnatural, but Maddock wouldn't hear of it.

"Here is this animal whom people made judgments upon and assumptions based on ignorance," Maddock says. "It didn't seem to be so much of a stretch that that happens to gay people too."

The wolf-dog named Pete now lives in a sanctuary called Full Moon Farm in North Carolina run by a woman who happens to have a gay son. …

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