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Monday, July 23, 2012

Leaving the gay ghetto behind

by Mark Segal
A national network news show did a segment on LGBT voters in this presidential-election year last week. The piece was centralized in San Francisco. Although it was accurate, it was only accurate for San Francisco. Why is it that when a broadcast media want to point out a generality of our community, they turn to San Francisco?

May I remind the media that we LGBT people live in every other corner of America. (Hey, don’t take my word for it: Take the U.S. Census’ word.)

So what’s wrong with using San Francisco as the pivotal center of the gay world in the vision of news directors?

First and foremost, San Francisco — as San Franciscans will tell you — is not a typical city. It is among the most left-leaning cities in the nation. In my book, that’s a plus, but not for a majority of the nation. And the political base, gay or otherwise, does not represent most other people’s political views around the nation. If that were not enough, the right wing has consistently linked our community with San Francisco ... and if, like me, you note the tricks of media and political manipulation, you noted the way it was done. They used every stereotype video they could find: men in underwear, drag queens, loving same-sex couples kissing each other.  

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