Gay Media: Friend or Foe?

Are gay media outlets friends or foes of the community’s civil rights struggle? The gay community has so often lobbied for equality under the banner argument that they want to be treated the same as everybody else.

Well, if they are constantly fighting for equality why is there a need for a gay radio count down? This past Sunday night I stood in my bathroom brushing my teeth and I was astounded to find out that I was listening to “the top five songs in Gayville, USA” that particular week. Gayville, USA? Where exactly, do you suppose that is located? My snap response as native New Yorker is Chelsea; I’m sure that if you asked a lifelong resident of San Francisco they would say Little Havana without question.

But I thought gay people lived everywhere? So, is Gayville, USA, a state of mind and not a physical location?
Needless to say I was shocked, not because I was offended but because I really didn’t understand the need for such a broadcast. Now, I am admittedly heterosexual, but I have always been a supporter of the gay community and understand the need for pride festivals and the need for one to come out of the closet and acknowledge ones homosexuality and even understand as a straight woman there’s no need-political or otherwise to proclaim my own sexuality or have a parade down fifth avenue to celebrate it.

Hell, I even understand the LOGO network and the need for such a channel. Certainly, given the highly conservative times the nation now finds itself in regular networks are going to be hesitant to air programming that may have explicit homosexual scenes even though they think nothing of displaying similar acts with heterosexual couples in addition to the success of cable shows such as “Queer as Folk” and “The L Word”.

But a gay radio broadcast? The song that I had been listening to before the station ID was “I’m not ready to make nice” by The Dixie Chicks. True, the Chicks have always been unconventional, and they have always made music that appeals to women, regardless of sexual orientation-so is there really a need for them to receive the unique distinction of being the number three song in Gayville USA this past week?

I feel as though supporting such a broadcast would only further segregate this community from the rest of society.
I also feel that it’s a good way to take a giant step back. What is this community and it supports supposed to revert back to the days when it was assumed that ALL gay men liked Cher?

Above The Law once rhymed “music is the universal language of all people”. It’s no secret that music is one of those things that is actually universal, instead of the term being used as a marketing tool. A person can very easily like music when it’s not even in the same language they speak in, so then why is it necessary for there to be yet another mainstream music countdown just because there’s a buzz around gay media, and gays in the media? I dare say it’s exploitive. In this instance, gay media is a foe to the cause.

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