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Houston Voice, No. 749, March 3, 1995
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Houston Voice, No. 749, March 3, 1995 - File 004. 1995-03-03. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. August 9, 2020. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/331/show/305.

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.

(1995-03-03). Houston Voice, No. 749, March 3, 1995 - File 004. Montrose Voice. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/331/show/305

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.

Houston Voice, No. 749, March 3, 1995 - File 004, 1995-03-03, Montrose Voice, University of Houston Libraries, accessed August 9, 2020, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/montrose/item/331/show/305.

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 Houston Voice, No. 749, March 3, 1995
Contributor
  • Darbonne, Sheri Cohen
Publisher Window Media
Date March 3, 1995
Language English
Subject
  • LGBTQ community
  • LGBTQ people
  • Gay liberation movement
Place
  • Houston, Texas
Genre
  • newspapers
Type
  • Text
Identifier OCLC: 31485329
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries Special Collections
  • LGBT Research Collection
  • Montrose Voice
Rights In Copyright
Note This item was digitized from materials loaned by the Gulf Coast Archive and Museum (GCAM).
Item Description
Title File 004
Transcript HOUSTON VOICE/ MARCH 3, 1995 3 OPINION My PBS, My NEA: another take on the funding debate By RICHARD D. MOHR A voice comes over my local NPR station urging me to write my congressman and beg him not to zero out federal funding for the Corporal ion for Public Broad- casling. The reason: "NPR is important to families, especially families with children," The station's self-promotion continues: "So in this era of family values, what deserves your support more," Say what? It's Saturday afternoon at the Met, I'm excited. I've scribbled a bit on opera, but I've never been to its premier American house. A generous friend has offered to lake me when I visit New York. I realize jusi how generous when he hands me the ticket. It reads: "Walkure Balcony $150." I gape. Later 1 read that the largest single grant from their National Endowment for the Arts in 1995 is to the Met—a half million bucks, I gape. Kids flipping burgers at McDonald's have subsidized my pairon's tickets. Do gays need the CPB and the NEA? Are gays getting value for money from them? Do ihey act justly? Are they helping gays win the war for the hearts and minds of Americans? No. When Clinton was elected President and Jane Alexander became head of the NEA. artists, museum direciors, and liberal pundits breathed a sigh if relief. They thought that they had seen the end of political intervention into the NEA'5 peer-review system for the evaluation of artistic merit. Early on, Alexander gave a heartening interview to The Advocate in which she claimed that the sort of politically-targeted interventions made by Reagan and Bush appointees would not occur under her leadership. But Clinton's NEA proved no more principled than Clinton himself. Immediately prior to last Fall's elections, the politically-appointed NEA oversight board reversed peer-review decisions to fund three sexually the- med projects. One was that of Andres Serrano, the world-class photographer whose works include card-table size images of male ejaculates in flight. To work for gays, the NEA would have to be principled. Bui it's not. And it won't be in any foreseeable future. The same is true for PBS. In 1994, the six- hour gay celebraiion "Tales of the City" was PBS' most successful program, even when success is measured at its crudest—total number of couch potatoes glued to the screen. But under conservative political pressure, PBS failed to build on its success and fund the filming of the second volume of the "Tales" series. In consequence, the project died. The general rationale for public support of the arts is the same as the rationale for government support to the sci ences. Public funds provide forums for potentially important ideas thai would noi make it on their own in the market place because they are new or abstract. Federal funds are not needed, and should not be used, 10 support and reinforce old ideas, customary practices, and money-making enterprises. Now. when it comes to gay issues, does public funding do things that the private sector does not? Again, no. For example. NPR's news and commentary programming —notably "All Things Considered"—is way behind the New York Times in its coverage of gay issues. And we have FOX and ABC. not PBS and the NEA, to thank for gradually demolishing the taboo against depictions of samesex affection and for portraying gays as expected fixtures on the landscape of everyday American life. The chief problem with public funding, though, is not that under political sway the federal government will fail to fund gay performance art, photographs, and screen plays in favor of funding Wagnerian operas and macrame. Rather, the chief problem is lhat federal funds have sinuous tendrils extending deep into the private realm. And these intrusions are a positive detriment to gay progress. For. you see. museums and other nodal points for representation and meaning, notably universities, are hooked on federal funds. The result is that museums and other non-federal institutions must be good boys and girls by federal standards to get the goodies that will keep them from going into withdrawal convulsions. So as Rush Lim- baugh's followers set these standards, gay images and ideas will vanish from museums and other federally-enticed institutions. More than ever, museums will censor themselves and play it safe in order to stay hooked up to federal sugar. Over the next couple months as Congress takes up issue of funding the arts and airwaves, a worst case scenario is likely to come true. Funding for the NEA and CPS will be reduced to a level where nothing interesting will be produced by them. Certainly gay art and gay programs will not be funded. But funding will not be reduced to the point where institutions are free of government oversight. If conservatives are clever, they will not cut funding entirely. Rather they will maintain a trickle of federal money to museums, iclevision stations, universities and the like in order to extend farther into the private sphere their surveillance and control, their manipulation and suppression of gay images and ideas. In these circumstances, it will be better for gays if the NEA and CPB are terminated. (Richard D. Mohr is a professor of philosophy at the University of Illinois— Urbana). The Houston Voice welcomes well-written, insightful and to-the-point commentaries for our opinion/editorial pages. We also welcome "counterpoint" articles that represent a different view on the issues approached in articles we have already run. We reserve the right to edit for length, format and clarity. The views expressed in guest commentaries and letters to the editor published in the Houston Voice are those of the writers. We seek to provide a broad-based forum which reflects the varying points of view of our rich and diverse community. Selection for publication is at our discretion. Send articles to: The Houston Voice, Attn.: Editor. 81 I Westheimer, Houston. TX 77006, or fax to 713-529-953 1 .< ACADEMY AWARD NOMINEE BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM "A STINGING COMEDY OF SEX AND POLITICS! 'Strawberry and Chocolate* kicks off the new year with a high note!" "AN AMAZING MOVIE! Absorbing and witty. It captures something special!" ROBERT REDFORD and miramx F|lMI pk-Ent JTRAWBERRY AND(H0<0LATE SAVOR THE FLAVOR NOW SHOWING CHECK THEATRE DIRECTORIES ^"* OH CALL FOR SHOWTIMES ' Gregiiway3 COALITION OF HOUSTON People With AIDS Coalition Houston is pleased to offer a PCS drug card provided through PCS Health Systems, Inc. The program provides discounts for many prescriptions through use of brand name and generic drugs. On average, generic drugs cost about 50% less than brand-name drugs. Participants pay the preferred price which is generally substantially different from the normal price. On average, the Preferred Price should give you a 25% savings over normal prices. PCS drug cards are available at a one time cost of $36.00. Prescriptions may be filled at member stores like Kroger and Walgreens or at any of the more than 18,000 independent pharmacies that also participate: To receive your card, fill out the enrollment form, and mail it with your check or money order payable to the PWA Coalition. Houston. You will receive your card in approximately 4 weeks. ENROLLMENT FORM (Please print. All information must be supplied for this form to be processed.) Mr./Ms. Address City State Zip Social Security Number Area Code & Phone Number! L Please make check payable to: People With AIDS Coalition n 3400 Montrose, #106 J IV Houston, TX 77006 >fa**4iA*. Amount: $36.00 /with/AIDS FOR OFFICE USE ONLY Carrier NumbeT E915 Group Number 1010
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