Magazine article The Nation

From Dolan to Da Vinci

Magazine article The Nation

From Dolan to Da Vinci

Article excerpt

From Dolan to da Vinci

Was TErry Dolan, strategist of the New Right whodied ofAIDS recently, ever seriously challenged on the contradiction between his politics and his sexual preference? A couple of weeks ago I said that he wasn't, but I was wrong. George De Stefano writes to point out that in his book God's Bullies: Power Politics and Religious Tyranny, gay journalist Perry Deane Young mentions that he had said to Dolan, "Several of my friends have been to gay parties with you, and they wonder how you can reconcile your own homosexuality with your lifestyle smong those groups you're aligned with." After Dolan tried to weasel his way out of a clear answer, Young asked, "Listen, are you homosexual or not?" Dolan: "No, I'm not, but I don't see that that's a question."

De Stefano also recalls an episode, noted by the columnistLiz Smith, when the playwright Larry Kramer ran into Dolan at a gay party in Washington in 1983, berated him for his heinous politics and personal hypocrisy, called him a pig and threw a drink in his face. De Stefano concludes:

I would dispute your claim that "there are plenty of gays onthe Reagan team. . . ." It's no secret that there are homosexuals in Reagan's administrations. . . . But these Reaganauts are not gay; that term denotes a social political identity based on sexuality. The men you cite are fucked-up closet cases (most are married) who might suck cock but would never march in a gay demonstration, subscribe to a gay paper or support an organization like the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund. With AIDS panic and the "Just say no" (to sex, to drugs, to rebellion) movement spreading so alarmingly, it's an act of political resistance to insist publicly on the right to be gay. The day after the Supreme Court decision last summer upholding state sodomy laws several thousand angry gay and lesbian people held demonstrations culminating in the closing of Seventh and then Sixth avenues. …

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