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(June 1, 2017) Gilbert Baker, the creator of the rainbow flag, died on March 31, 2017. We had the opportunity to interview him just a month earlier, on March 1, for OutCasting Episodes 36 and 37. The May 1 edition of OutCasting Overtime (formerly OutCasting OffAir) is a remembrance of Gilbert from OutCasting youth participant Alex, who interviewed Gilbert on March 1.
(June 1, 2017) OutCasting Overtime — coming out of the closet, then being forced back in.
Part 1 of 3 — OutCasting episode 32
Part 2 of 3 — OutCasting episode 33
Part 3 of 3 — OutCasting episode 34
In this three part series, we explore the anti-LGBTQ backlash against the U.S. Supreme Court's recent landmark cases of United States vs. Windsor [pdf] and Obergefell vs. Hodges [pdf], in which the Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and made marriage equality the law of the land. (We previously discussed the Windsor case with Evan Wolfson, a key architect of the marriage equality movement, in OutCasting episodes 19 and 20.) But as important as those key victories were, things haven't suddenly gotten wonderful for LGBTQ people.
Left to right: OutCasting youth participant Sydney, guest Michelangelo Signorile, OutCasting Assistant Producer Alex Mintz in the Manhattan apartment of Executive Producer Marc Sophos, where the interviews were recorded
Our guest on this series is the author, journalist, and LGBTQ activist Michelangelo Signorile (pronounced "Senior-elly"). He’s the host of the Michelangelo Signorile Show, a daily talk show on Sirius-XM Progress 127. He’s the Editor-at-Large of Huffington Post Queer Voices. His most recent book is “It’s Not Over: Getting Beyond Tolerance, Defeating Homophobia, and Winning True Equality.”
This OutCasting series examines various aspects of the anti-LGBTQ backlash: violence against LGBTQ people is up, hundreds of discriminatory and very possibly unconstitutional laws are being introduced around the country and often passed, government officials refuse to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, businesses refuse to serve them — and all of this is sending a terrible message to LGBTQ youth, who are already at greatly heightened risk of suicide and other self-destructive behaviors.
In Part 1, we look at what Mike describes in his book as "victory blindness," the mistaken belief that now that we've won marriage equality, equality is ours and we don't have to keep working for it. We talk about the historical importance of gay bars as sanctuaries. We talk about the Orlando massacre and the fact that many in the mainstream media ignored or played down the LGBT angle, and about the hypocrisy of those offering their "thoughts and prayers" while dehumanizing the victims of the massacre by denying their LGBTQ identities and refusing to take any action in favor of greater equality or reasonable gun regulation. Finally, in an excerpt from an OutCasting OffAir feature, OutCasting youth participant Brianna reacts to the Orlando massacre. Parts 2 and 3 continue the discussion, focusing on anti-LGBTQ laws, the roles played by anti-LGBTQ organizations, the importance of the Supreme Court and the rest of the federal judicial branch in this year's presidential election. We also talk about the fact that despite our big win in marriage equality, "mission" is very definitely "not accomplished."