Response to Luke Mergner
2 hours ago
"It has been two years since I moved back to San Francisco. ... An entirely new 21st-century urban high-density city is rising. Dire, street-survival poverty jostles up against an unprecedented exuberance of über-conspicuous consumption here. As gay community scholar Gayle Rubin remarked at a recent GLBT Historical Society presentation, our painted lady is being transformed into a "command city for the 21st century." Like Hong Kong or Dubai, it is a "desirable" place for the new global corporate elite to build their personal homes. ...
And as cities have become desirable again, deeper-pocket interests have been gentrifying the gays out of their urban enclaves all across the country. The Castro, our own homegrown "ethnically" gay neighborhood and symbolic (if less frequently visited) gay capital of the United States, suddenly looks like the last "traditional" gay neighborhood. As the Castro has been turning a bit seedy, local queer pride and, increasingly, the city planning and tourism boards see it as the Gay Capital of the World. Herein lies the ironic paradox today: as gay folk have been disappeared by AIDS or sucked into the queer diaspora, gays and straights alike see this newly "ethnic" community through gently softening lenses, engulfed in cloud-shrouded images of quaint, nostalgic, queer white picket fences."
- Les Wright, part 1 & part2
"yay, the charm of his eyes, his looks, once our eyes met ... I forgot my name"