Monday, July 04, 2011

Gay-bashing, fifties-style

I notice on Statcounter that there has been some activity on a 2006 posting of mine, reprinting an anti-gay chapter from the 1951 exploitation book, Washington Confidential by Jack Lait and Lee Mortimer. Someone has linked to the post, so I hope they'll re-link to this improved-looking posting.

I've re-scanned to make the pages more readable. Lait and Mortimer, authors of this book, were right-wingers who wrote in a tabloid style. If it's any comfort at all to my gay readers, Lait and Mortimer were just as tough on Capitol madams, communists and grafting politicians.

While we might still have negative opinions of those latter groups, the negative perception of many about gays
over the years has changed to a more positive view. In 1951 Lait and Mortimer could get away with quoting a Congressman A. L. Miller of Nebraska ("a physician" and "author of the District's new bill to regulate the homos") who proffered this idiocy: "It is found that the cycle of these individuals' homosexual desires follows the cycle closely patterned to the menstrual period of women. There may be three or four days in each month that the homosexual's instincts break down and drive the individual into abnormal fields of sexual practice. Under large doses of sedatives during this sensitive cycle, he may escape such acts." (Italics are mine.)

So now we know. When gays get horny sedate them. With large doses.

"Garden of Pansies" could now be considered hate literature, so beware, this is exactly as it was published 60 years ago.

Author Jack Lait died in 1954 of a circulatory ailment in Beverly Hills, California, at age 71. Lee Mortimer (pseudonym of Mortimer Leiberman) died in 1963 of a heart attack, age 59.


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