To piggyback on last issue’s important letter from Anna Maria Wolf, the LGBTQ+ community is currently under siege at home and abroad. Looking for a convenient target to …
To piggyback on last issue’s important letter from Anna Maria Wolf, the LGBTQ+ community is currently under siege at home and abroad. Looking for a convenient target to distract from the real issues—the planet is currently in a catastrophic global warming death spiral exacerbated by power-hungry greed and the increasing gap between economic and social classes—many who wish to retain power and continue “business as usual” have settled on the LGBTQ+ community, and trans people specifically, as the cause of huMANity’s ills. Add in the usual targets—immigrants, people of color, Jews (conveniently disguised as support for Israel’s right-wing government)—and you have the key components of the platform of several current would-be candidates for President of the United States and significant members of their party.
For this reason, it’s essential that the local paper of record do all it can to cover and support community members who are marginalized and face discrimination. The Leader lost a golden opportunity when it gave scant coverage to this year’s Olympic Pride event—a day that, by some estimates, drew 2000 freedom-affirming celebrants to downtown. For this longtime out resident, who was away on assignment and has missed perhaps four Pride celebrations since New York City’s first Pride Parade, Christopher Street Liberation Day in 1970, the scant coverage was especially painful. The Leader’s coverage made it impossible for anyone who wasn’t downtown on June 10 to understand how important Pride is to the health of vitality of our community.
Local journalism, by its very nature, educates through reportage. Education, knowledge, and informed choices are the backbone of democracy. When reportage falls short, the community suffers.
To the Leader’s credit, it published Anna Maria’s letter. But more must be done. Please resolve to do better in the future and demonstrate that resolve through more extensive and informed reporting. Thank you,
Jason Victor Serinus
P.S. Anna Maria Wolf erred in her letter when she ascribed the history-changing week of Stonewall Riots to the work of two transgender people, Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera. Marsha and Sylvia, whom I knew, did not form their organization until well after Stonewall and the founding of the Gay Liberation Front. For those who wish to learn more, please attend Martha Shelley’s free book reading in the Port Townsend Public Library on August 9 at 7 p.m.