Cleve Jones Responds: Letter to the Editor
BY Cleve Jones
December 13 2008 1:00 AM ET
That’s what Sean has to say. Let me be clear, Sean Penn does not endorse dictators in any way, shape or form. (And by the way, like him or not, Hugo Chavez is a democratically elected official.)
As Advocate readers know only too well, our own history haunts us. Bowers v. Hardwick, 1986, was a United States Supreme Court decision that upheld the constitutionality of a Georgia sodomy law criminalizing oral and anal sex in private between consenting adults. Seventeen years later the Supreme Court finally overruled Bowers in Lawrence v. Texas, 2003, and held that such laws are unconstitutional. Those who would cast stones at Castro’s Cuba should remember that people could be arrested for gay sex in the US as recently as 2003.
Sean Penn is a citizen of the world. He harbors a tireless curiosity and a healthy skepticism, so he goes out and ascertains things for himself firsthand. His explorations as a journalist have put a spotlight on some of the biggest issues of our time: in Iraq, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, and -- closer to home -- New Orleans. His visits and dispatches have opened avenues of communication and encouraged dialogue.
Since the film Milk has been dragged into this, I’ll simply add that Sean Penn’s deeply felt portrayal of gay rights activist Harvey Milk has re-energized our fighting spirit, inspired thousands of young LGBT activists and focused public attention on the struggle of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in our continuing fight for equal rights.
Sean Penn is a man who has completely embraced our community and our cause.
Cleve Jones Palm Springs
- WATCH: President Obama Tells Morehouse Grads 'Be the Best Husband to Your Boyfriend'
- WATCH: Ben Affleck and SNL Crew Go to Ex-Gay Camp
- WATCH: The Cure for Gay Wedding-Related Depression
- Florida Teen Facing Sex Offender Charge For Consensual Same-Sex Relationship
- Texas Man Resurrects Suit Alleging AG Fired Him for Being Gay
- Thousands Rally Against Anti-LGBT Violence in New York City
Sign Up For Email Updates
- Politics WATCH: Obama's Morehouse Commencement Speech Name-Checks Gay Rights 52 min 47 sec ago
- Crime Thousands Rally Against Anti-LGBT Violence in New York City 1 hour 13 min ago
- Women WATCH: Ellen Responds To Abercrombie's Sizeist CEO - 'Fitch, Please!' 1 hour 23 min ago
- Marriage Equality WATCH: Matthew Morrison Can't Even Make Sense of Marriage Inequality 1 hour 49 min ago
- Law Texas Man Resurrects Suit Alleging AG Fired Him for Being Gay 2 hours 20 sec ago
- Women Obama to Award Presidential Medal of Freedom to Sally Ride 2 hours 48 min ago
- Pride Turn It Way Up with Pride Beats 2013 2 hours 49 min ago