Friday, January 08, 2010

Know Your LGBT History - Welcome Home, Bobby

From the deep, deep, DEEP closets of the 80s television movie era comes this 1986 CBS feature.

Welcome Home, Bobby stars Timothy Williams as a high school student who gets caught up in a drug bust. He is exonerated but because of the investigation, information comes out that he had a sexual relationship with an older man.

Actually it was just a one-time thing but needless to say after members of his small town find out, Williams is ostracized, big time.

And to top it all off, the situation causes a huge problem with his uber-macho father (Tony LoBianco).

Mercy, where to begin with this movie?

There is only one way to put it - this movie was a mess. The writers no doubt meant well but meaning well doesn't necessarily create a good script.

There is so much to hate about Welcome Home, Bobby.

1. The older gay man whom Williams had the relationship with is nasty and predatory as hell There are few, if any positive lgbt characters. They are either oversexed rich older men or wise-beyond their years teenagers. There was supposedly one positive lgbt character, but I don't remember him. Apparently he didn't get enough screen time.

2. The taunts against Williams are awful. Five minutes into the movie (taking place after the drug bust and when Williams returns to school) pretty much gives us an indication of how fellow students are going to treat him. There is a brutal scene of him being taunted by another student. And I didn't even mention the hazing by the swim team which came later.

3. Williams' family is strangely ineffective. The father is extremely homophobic (which is demonstrated in a nasty scene where he nearly beats the hell out of Williams for wrestling with his younger brother) and his mother is so ineffective, it's like she's furniture.

4. Even through it all (believe it or not, this movie does have a happy ending), we are not clear whether or not Williams is gay and to me that sucks.What's wrong with him being gay?

This movie came out after the monumental An Early Frost (the first television movie to deal with the AIDS virus). But it's clear that there was lot of confusion and ignorance back then.

The following clip better emphasizes just how bad the movie is. It's the climactic scene where Williams confronts his father's homophobia:

Past Know Your LGBT History Posts:

Know Your LGBT History - Barney Miller

Know your lgbt history - The Jerry Springer Show

Know your lgbt history - Martin Lawrence and that 'gay guy' on his show

Know your lgbt history - The Ricki Lake Show

Know your lgbt history - Which Way Is Up

Know your lgbt history - Gays in Primetime Soaps

Know your lgbt history - Boys Beware

Know your lgbt history - The Boondocks

Know your lgbt history - Mannequin

Know your lgbt history - The Warriors

Know Your LGBT History - New York Undercover

Know Your LGBT History - Low Down Dirty Shame

Know Your LGBT History - Fortune and Men's Eyes

Know your lgbt history - California Suite

Know your lgbt history - Taxi (Elaine's Strange Triangle)

Know your lgbt history - Come Back Charleston Blue

Know your lgbt history - James Bond goes gay

Know your lgbt history - Windows

Know your lgbt history - To Wong Foo and Priscilla

Know your lgbt history - Blazing Saddles

Know your lgbt history - Sanford and Son

Know your lgbt history - In Living Color

Know your lgbt history - Cleopatra Jones and her lesbian drug lords

Know your lgbt history - Norman, Is That You?

Know your lgbt history - The 'Exotic' Adrian Street

Know your lgbt history - The Choirboys

Know your lgbt history - Eddie Murphy

Know your lgbt history - The Killing of Sister George

Know your lgbt history - Hanna-Barbera cartoons pushes the 'gay agenda

'Know your lgbt history - Cruising

Know your lgbt history - Foxy Brown and Cleopatra Jones

Know your lgbt history - I Got Da Hook Up

Know your lgbt history - Fright Night

Know your lgbt history - Flowers of Evil

The Jeffersons and the transgender community   

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Washington Post columnist: Lisa Miller needs to come out of hiding and face her chaos

In a Washington Post piece, columnist Petula Dvorak breaks down the Janet Jenkins/Lisa Miller custody fight in a way that is simple, to the point, and highly detrimental to religious right talking points:

Lisa Miller and Janet Jenkins were in their 30s when they met in Virginia, moved to Vermont, were joined in a civil union in 2000, bought a house and had a kid two years later.

As many gay folks will tell you, moves like this aren't spontaneous, crazy or happy-go-lucky. Legal issues, paperwork, money, explanations to parents, doctor appointments, fertility treatments and insemination attempts make having a child a considered and costly process.

But after going through all that and parenting the child for a year and a half, Miller and Jenkins split. Miller, who gave birth to Isabella, got primary custody and moved back to Virginia. Jenkins stayed in Vermont, and the supreme courts of both states treated it like a ho-hum breakup. There would be regular visits, child support payments and so forth.

After taking the cash and sending homemade cookies and cards to Isabella's other mommy for some time, Miller apparently conked herself on the head and decided that her whole lesbian life had been a big mistake. She began going to a conservative, evangelical church and had declared herself a born-again Christian.

She simply wanted to erase it all, make the past go away. She decided Jenkins was not the other mommy, homosexuality is wrong and the lovely old folks they'd been visiting and calling "mom-mom" and "pop-pop" (Jenkins's parents) couldn't contact the little girl they treated as their granddaughter.
And that point that seems to be always obscured by members of the religious right, especially the Liberty Counsel, who by the way, has refused to give a comment on Miller's kidnapping of Isabella.

Dvorak wraps up her excellent piece this way:

Miller's legal team said in court that a move to Vermont, with a new school and new friends, would be disruptive for a 7-year-old.

And going into hiding isn't?

I think it'll be a lot trickier to explain to a child why one mommy is in jail than why another mommy likes girls.

Lisa Miller, come out of hiding and face this like a mom.
I agree. All reasonable people should.

Hat tip to Box Turtle Bulletin

Related post:

Janet Jenkins pleads for help in finding her daughter

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From 'Fistgate' to 'NAMBLA-gate' - The attacks on Kevin Jennings get stranger and stranger

No matter how much they are being ignored, the attacks on Obama appointee Kevin Jennings are definitely red meat for the fringes on the right.

That's the only way to explain the absolute ludicrousness of Cliff Kincaid's latest attacks on Jennings.

Earlier this week, I wrote how Cliff Kincaid of AIM (Accuracy in Media) claimed that the outcry over the Ugandan anti-gay bill is really a dodge to cover up the supposed "building attention" over Jennings.

Kincaid has published a series of reports called NAMBLA-gate: The Strange Case of Kevin Jennings.

I hear he was going to call the report "Fistgate," but apparently Big Government had allegedly copywrote the name.

Now in part one of his "report," Kincaid said the following:

It would appear that the purpose of the orchestrated controversy over the proposed law in Uganda is to divert attention from the real scandal involving Obama Education Department official Kevin Jennings and his praise for the founder of the modern gay rights movement, Harry Hay, a supporter of adult-child sex.

Kincaid was referring to an old fake controversy where some members of the right were claiming that Jennings advocated pedophilia since he praised Harry Hay, a founding father of the gay rights movement who later voiced support for NAMBLA (North American Man-Boy Love Association).

But Jennings only praised Hay for his early work in gay rights. He never gave one word of support about Hay supporting NAMBLA.