Dan Choi Protests DADT

Say what you will, 2009 and 2010 have been good years for gay Americans under the presidency of Barack Obama. We helped elect the right man President of the United States. So yes, Mabel, there has been a difference.

First of all, the wrongs visited upon the lesbian couple in Miami a few years ago may be righted by an executive order the President authorized last week on his plane ride back to the Capitol from a Florida fundraiser. No longer will same sex partners be denied the right to visit their loved ones in a hospital. It’s our front page story, and it is a significant legal victory for same-sex relationships.

Second, President Obama continues to support measures to overturn the ban on gays in the military, effectively disarming the misguided proponents of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’.

Activists are genuinely and legitimately perturbed this has not happened more quickly. They have this newspaper’s support. Still, the bottom line is that the President has raised the issue and not run from it. The days of ‘DADT’ are grinding to a halt.

This marks the 12th issue of South Florida Gay News.com

We hit the ground running and we are now in full stride.

We have printed and published over 1,000 articles and 500 pages of news in less than 90 days.

Our website has surpassed over 2,500 page views on Mondays, the day we publish, and we are receiving 1,000 plus visitors daily.

Our South Florida Gay News.com facebook page has close to 700 fans, and we have nearly a thousand subscribers for our daily e-mail headline blast.

Our publication has launched its ‘Read Red’ and ‘Read All Over’ campaign, based on our distribution of over 100 indoor news racks and 50 outdoor ones.

When the paper is distributed on Monday mornings, three sets of independent contractors drop off the South Florida Gay News to over 360 locations in the tri county area, from Washington Avenue in South Beach to Worth Avenue in Palm Beach.

Margaret Costanza

Margaret “Midge” Costanza, 77, passed away last week, almost 33 years to the day she forged LGBT history in America. In lieu of a news story we commemorate her life in this editorial.

The White House. 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Until Saturday, March 26, 1977, its doors had never been opened to lesbians and gay men and straight allies. But on that historic day, more than a dozen women and men entered the West Wing of the presidential residence to meet with Midge Costanza, the director of President Jimmy Carter’s Office of Public Liaison.

Coming Out

It is Opening Day in Baseball. Baseball is the passion of my life, the center of most of my existence. Coming out as an athlete and baseball player was not in harmony with that universe of homophobic athletes I grew up around. Constantly, in the locker rooms and on the field, the most denigrating remark you would hear is that “you play like a faggot.” That’s the way it was. In some places, that is the way it still is.

The world evolves though, and now everyone is rushing to come out of the closet, from Hollywood to baseball fields, so much so that our tongue in cheek cover and piece this week- in an otherwise serious issue- is that coming out of the closet has become the fashionable and trendy thing to do. In fact, we have created a waiting list for those seeking sunlight and affirmation as friends of Dorothy. Dame Edna would be proud.

Publishing this newspaper takes a lot of time and energy, but the two days I spent at Pridefest were kind to me. So many of you overwhelmed me with praise and compliments on the energy and excitement we here at SFGN have created in the community.

“Finally,” I heard over and over again, “a paper with content; with real news.” The truth is real news has always been there if other publications chose to invest in you and take the leap of faith necessary to believe you mattered. You are the news, and we just report it.

South Florida may once have been a playground of just sun and fun but even in the year 2000, in the early days of The Express Gay News, I saw a vibrant gay community actively emerging. Times are tough today, for sure, harder than they have ever been for most of us.

To continue our mission, this newspaper will continue to need your support. But there is reason to believe in ourselves and our unlimited capacity. The LGBT community is stronger and more diversified than it has ever been.