Friday, March 12, 2004

Freedom To Be Like Me

Maggie Downs must have drugged all of the editors to get this story on the front page of the Enquirer about a local lesbian couple who went to San Francisco and became one of the last homosexuals couples to be married before the California Supreme Court ordered a stop to such marriage while they hear the case pending on Gay Marriage.

The Enquirer is not known to push "Gay issues," especially on the front page, so this is a bit of a coup. I am pleased to see that the Enquirer is starting up a panel of local homosexuals. In an email sent I got a copy of what the Enquirer is asking for:
The Enquirer is putting together a panel of local people who are gay or lesbian. We have several goals:

1. We want to hear from local gays and lesbians about issues affecting them here in Cincinnati, and how we might better cover those issues, and be sensitive in our stories, headlines, etc.

2. We hope that such a gathering would help gays and lesbians better understand the newspaper, and how its editors make decisions.

3. Ultimately, we would like to produce a story about what it's like to be gay and live in Cincinnati in 2004.

We're hoping to hear from "everyday" people, gays and lesbians who have jobs and families and go to church and movies and sporting events and dine out with friends just like anybody else in the city.

We hope to meet the first time at the Enquirer building downtown sometime the week of March 22. It likely would be an evening meeting, on a day that works best for those who participate. The meeting will last 90 minutes to two hours and we likely would convene again in April, but that will be decided later.

Members of the group must be willing to speak on the record, and have their photos taken. We hope to use this group as both a source of ideas, and as a sounding board for our coverage of issues affecting gays and lesbians.
This is a big change in approach for this old gray paper, especially in the face of increased anti-homosexual attitudes locally and through out the country. With the CCV, and the Enquirer’s own Peter Bronson, making a push against all things relating to liberal freedoms, I actually salute the efforts of the Enquirer. I will hate to see the fallout. I also fear the couple will be threatened. I hope if they are that incident also makes the front page of the paper.

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