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South Texas Community News, Vol. 2, No. 8, April 20, 1978
File 003
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South Texas Community News, Vol. 2, No. 8, April 20, 1978 - File 003. 1978-04-20. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. October 25, 2020. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/gcam/item/2423/show/2400.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

(1978-04-20). South Texas Community News, Vol. 2, No. 8, April 20, 1978 - File 003. Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM) Digital Archive. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/gcam/item/2423/show/2400

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

South Texas Community News, Vol. 2, No. 8, April 20, 1978 - File 003, 1978-04-20, Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM) Digital Archive, University of Houston Libraries, accessed October 25, 2020, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/gcam/item/2423/show/2400.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title South Texas Community News, Vol. 2, No. 8, April 20, 1978
Date April 20, 1978
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
Place
  • San Antonio, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
  • LGBT Research Collection
  • Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM) Digital Archive
Rights No Copyright - United States
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 003
Transcript Pa«e2 Spite, revenge, competition? Community News Houston Chronicle irirb Sunday, March 26.1978 Opinions on motives are varied for rash of gay community fires BY JIM BARLOW Chronicle Staff Servi ice just plain 'trashy' HUTCHINSON, Kan. <UPI) — A local man has a surprise for the city Trash Service. Gary Nachtigal, chagrined over what he calls the city service's trashy habits, waited for the city's annual spring cleanup before springing bis surprise. He has left a pile of rubbish at the street curb in front of his home that is about 50 feet long, 4 feet high and 6 feet wide. The pile represents a year's worth of garbage he's stored in a shed behind his home. "About a year ago, I got mad at the city Trash Service," said Nachtigal. "It seemed like they couldn't dump a trash can without getting it all over the yard. "So I quit placing my trash can at the curb. Now they're going to get it all at Speculation continues as to the origin of fires which destroyed the Silver Bullet, at 1005 Califor nia, damaged another bar catering to homosexuals and two apartments in the Montrose area. Arson investigators are probing a series of unsolved fires that have bit a number of Houston bars catering to homosexuals. So far no one has been injured in the tires, mostly in the Montrose area, but damages have amounted to thousands of dollars. Opinions on the motives for the fires are varied. "In that part of town," said L. H. Mi- keska. chief arson investigator of the Houston Fire Department, "there are so many motives — jealousy, competition, spite and revenge-type fires." Victims of the fires and gay activists here say they believe the fires may be the work of persons opposed to the homosexual life-style Dan Roberts, co-owner of the Silver Bullet at 1005 California, which was destroyed by fire in February, blames hate campaigns. "We're the last minority group to hate." he said. The night of March 8 was the latest spate of such fires. Set afire that night were two garage apartments in the Montrose area, as well as Mary's Lounge. 1200 Westheimer. The fires, which occurred in an 83- minute span, involved either disabling a gas meter and setting it afire, or. in the caseof the lounge, setting afire a container holding (he gas meter. The fire at the lounge was also the first which occurred during business hours. About 30 persons escaped safely from the lounge, which had only damage to a patio, ,-m^ffi Other unsolved firjaJnciude three at i^te* SecondSun^jjJp^eitner, thes<*Ke< •^SnmTfflSand 1978, and the Club Steam Bath of Houston at 2205 Fannin on May 25.' 1907. Mikeska said arson aimed atgay bars has E\ problem since 1988. although ■■SerTwas a slack period frprn nfl^ft 1977" Currently, eight investigators areS- working on the fires, he added. Pat Duckett, assistant chief investigator of the arson squad which has 34 inspectors and six supervisors-says ^JS' several of the cases tag staff has good leads. Whiie not niling out some sort of anti- gay movement behind the fires. Duckett says there may be other motives. •It does look like an organized effort to get rid of the gays." Mikeska sod. But £„ might have threefires; to thatarea one night set by someone else. There are many different motives. There is a helioi a lot of competition in the gay business and a lot of money to be made. munity. Flock said, but they are not the only ones worried. "Our straight neighbors are in a panic," fearing that they too will be hit by firebugs, either on purpose or by accident, he says. Robert said that if the fires continue, someone is sure to d ie. "The fire at Mary's Lounge was the first when the place was open." he said. "If it had been one of the big clubs, everybody could not have gotten out. That's the One possibility investigators have considered is that an organized crime group --from outside the city may be setting the *• fires in order to get rid of some competition before making a move into the city. Jim Flock, a former advertising executive and the other co-owner of the Silver Bullet Club, agrees that it is profitable to Cater to gays. "There are probably 235,000 homosexuals to this city." he said. "They don't have anything to spend their money on except themselves. There's millions of dollars spent in bars. "But I don't think any of our competition would consider us enough competiti- tion to do something like this. I don't think any of them are willing to commit a crime." Ray Hill, an activist in the Houston Gay Political Caucus, said that unlike many other cities, bars here catering to homosexuals are not owned by any particular group. "I ha ve just a gut level feeling it's more to do with ihe radical bigot extremist rather than organized crime," Hill said of the fires. .•*^Jf theTMver Bullet had been beating outite competition, that might have been arkwaoh*." he said, adding that this was f e-siver BjiHefTsakiRuberts. was the ^fli&:,*??jar fires, in October of last O'Neal to star LOS ANGELES (AP) — Ryan O'Neal will recreate his starring role from "Love Story" in Paramount's "Oliver's Story". Puerto Rican party splits on statehood SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico <UPI) — Puerto Rico's Democratic Party has turned into a battleground in the contest between advocates of statehood, led by Franklin Delano Lopez, advocates of Puerto Rico's present commonwealth status, and supporters of independence. The issue, at least as tar as the party is concerned, is headed for a unique election this Fall that is being billed as the first of a series of plebiscites on the island's eternal status question. 'Gay rights' Law Nears SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — An ordinance banning discrimination against homosexuals in employment, housing and public accommodations needs only the mayor's signature before it takes effect in this city where an estimated one in seven residents is a homosexual. The Board of Supervisors gave final approval to the ordinance Monday on a 10-1 vote with no discus- i, adding San Francisco to a list of more than 40 cities that have such ordinances on the books. Mayor George. Moscone is expected to sign the ordinance. The ban is similar to a county ordinance repealed last year in Miami after singer Anita Bryant led a successful repeal campaign that brought gay rights to the nation's ' attention. TAX STRfl yderimd oh Ji damage, and i jp. Both fires did minor '"d in the bar's fire insurance being cancer ^ifm more insurance was purchased, ti. f. F h -14 gutted the place, which «"ll'£h7,: "had as many as aT,O0O patrons "TyjJJJ oria-rear patio. Roberts,Flock. Hill and others say k believe the arson squad is trying its beV to solve the series m fires ••We're unsatisfied Viat-no one has been caught." Flock said. "But-ne realize what a hell of a task we're up again* •• The fires have affected the ga., com- ' scary thing. That's my fear. If tt con&V ues. someone wUl get killed. . Regardless of the fires, Hill said the tomc^xual community wul keep rtshars, adding that two benefits have already | been held to help raise money to rebuild . the Silver Bullet w % KRRV MOTT, of * •M'^^.'^KEr- -4« two forms Into a trash can fire■j*"^ w^ midjuS? plvtesiltiithe Income tax. The Ming oeaoimc Moiffley/^*s.
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