Black and White and Gay All Over! 1967 News Doc ‘The Homosexuals’
My first impression of CBS’ 1967 news documentary The Homosexuals was that the first homo up to bat at the interview table knocked it out of the park. Half a century before the LGBT community would arm themselves with clever zingers like Born This Way, homeboy sticks to his guns and tells anchor Mike Wallace that his homosexuality is akin to having blond hair.
Wallace, to his credit, seems to accept this explanation, even if he counters with a survey in which most gay men answered that while they would not change their own sexuality, they would not wish it upon a child or brother of their.
It’s around the 3:50 mark that the footage suddenly shows it’s age with comments about not bringing a mixed child into a world that hated and scorned him – like the X-Men? – and one particularly harrowing introduction to the next subject to be interviewed.
“This man is 27, college educated. He was unable to hold a job because of his inability to contain his homosexual inclinations. He’s been in jail three times for committing homosexual acts. If he is arrested once more he faces the possibility of life. He is now on probation and in psychotherapy.”
We admit it is rather difficult to make it through one’s typing assignments while you are giving seven handjobs at once – probation officer and psychotherapist included.
This old timey CBS news piece is well worth an hour of your time. Skip that cocktail tonight and take a bit to appreciate just how far we’ve come, and how many things haven’t changed at all.