Thursday, November 29, 2012

Stephanie Miller and Bill Press Apologize and Denounce Salvation Army Fundraiser

Image from AfterEllen
To the average person, there is nothing wrong with The Salvation Army. It's a nifty chain of thrift stores, and a charity outfit that collects change in kettles outside of grocery stores. But it is prudent to remember the "Salvation" part of their name (and possibly the "Army" part). This is a religious organization, and a socially conservative one at that. They've had a long and storied history of anti-gay policies in particular. As one of the gays, I've been subtly aware of this history, and avoid associating with the organization.

Stephanie Miller and Bill Press--both radio and Current TV hosts--didn't get the memo. They agreed to a fundraising drive for The Salvation Army, and Steph had a representative for the group on the air for an interview. I happened to be listening, and found it odd. But in truth, the guy was selling a bill of goods to Steph and her audience. To me, it sounded like the organization was changing their ways. But, no, they're not. Unsurprisingly, both shows started to take heat, some of it ridiculously venomous.
Image found at The Progressive Puppy

Look Stephanie Miller is gay. Her producer Chris LaVoie is gay. Many of their regular guests are gay or "gay adjacent" like Hal Sparks. No way, no how did the show knowingly promote anti-gay bigotry. Settle down people. And now, both Steph and Bill Press have apologized profusely, rescinded their sponsorship agreement, and personally matched funds already raised for The Trevor Project. Yes, they goofed. But they made it right.

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