Category Archives: Men

Martin Delaney

It is with profound sadness that we pass along Project Inform's announcement of the passing this morning of their Founder, Martin Delaney. He was 63 years old.

PHOTO: Martin Delaney

Martin Delaney,
Founder, Project Inform


When the full history of the HIV/AIDS epidemic is written, there can be no doubt that Martin Delaney will rank as one of the greatest contributors to ending this great human tragedy. Those of us living with HIV, and all of us who care about people living with HIV, mourn the loss of this great leader, lifesaver and wonderful human being.

Delaney’s activism is legendary. He was a David among many Goliaths. He has assured that government, researchers and pharmaceutical companies understand and respond to the needs of HIV-positive people. He heavily influenced the development of the strong arsenal of medications we now have to prolong life for millions of people worldwide.

Personally and through Project Inform, Martin Delaney educated or counseled tens of thousands of HIV-positive individuals and their caregivers about how to treat HIV. A day does not pass in the life of this agency that a person living with HIV or a supporter tells of a life lengthened or saved as a result of Marty’s efforts.

Intellect, activist, diplomat, mentor, friend — each of us will remember Marty for the great attributes he brought to his lifesaving work. He will be missed terribly.

We will provide information as quickly as we are able about the date of a public event to memorialize Marty. Emails of support can be sent to and cards can be mailed to Project Inform, 1375 Mission Street, San Francisco, CA 94103.


 Bishop_Gene_Robinson-1 As many of you know, the Right Rev. Gene Robinson, the out Gay Episcopal Bishop of New Hampshire, gave the opening prayer at yesterday's Lincoln Memorial event. It was the first event in the inaugural festivities this year. HBO, which had paid for exclusive rights to the event chose not to broadcast Bishop Robinson's prayer.

So if you watched there you wouldn't have caught it or even known that it occurred. To his ever-lasting credit, Brian Lehrer at WNYC in New York aired the first two minutes of the prayer on his morning show. But shamefully, there's no record of it in images placed on the sites of Getty Images, New York Times and the Washington Post.

It's a complete erasure of his ever having delivered the prayer. 

As if that wasn't enough, the chorus appearing behind Josh Groban, was none other than the Washington D.C. Gay Men's Chorusalso unidentified in the chiron, unlike virtually every other performer.   DC Gay Men's Chorus

Such is the continuing policy of silence and erasure we have to live with from people who should know better.  We are used to this. If you know your Gay history this has happened again and again. In fact White Crane is really about recovering the truth in our history and celebrating it.

So we're going to celebrate it by providing here the full text of Bishop Robinson's prayer. We suggest you forward this around so that everyone has a chance to enjoy it.

Lincoln memorial
   Opening Inaugural Event

Lincoln Memorial, Washington, DC

January 18, 2009

Delivered by the Right Reverend V. Gene Robinson:

"Welcome to Washington! The fun is about to begin, but first, please join me in pausing for a moment, to ask God's blessing upon our nation and our next president.

O God of our many understandings, we pray that you will…

Bless us with tears – for a world in which over a billion people exist on less than a dollar a day, where young women from many lands are beaten and raped for wanting an education, and thousands die daily from malnutrition, malaria, and AIDS.

Bless us with anger – at discrimination, at home and abroad, against refugees and immigrants, women, people of color, gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

Bless us with discomfort – at the easy, simplistic "answers" we've preferred to hear from our politicians, instead of the truth, about ourselves and our world, which we need to face if we are going to rise to the challenges of the future.

Bless us with patience – and the knowledge that none of what ails us will be "fixed" anytime soon, and the understanding that our new president is a human being, not a messiah.

Bless us with humility – open to understanding that our own needs as a nation must always be balanced with those of the world.

Bless us with freedom from mere tolerance – replacing it with a genuine respect and warm embrace of our differences.

Bless us with compassion and generosity – remembering that every religion's God judges us by the way we care for the most vulnerable.

And God, we give you thanks for your child Barack, as he assumes the office of President of the United States.

Give him wisdom beyond his years, and inspire him with Lincoln's reconciling leadership style, President Kennedy's ability to enlist our best efforts, and Dr. King's dream of a nation for ALL the people.

Give him a quiet heart, for our Ship of State needs a steady, calm captain in these times.

Give him stirring words, for we will need to be inspired and motivated to make the personal and common sacrifices necessary to facing the challenges ahead.

Make him color-blind, reminding him of his own words that under his leadership, there will be neither red nor blue states, but the United States.

Help him remember his own oppression as a minority, drawing on that experience of discrimination, that he might seek to change the lives of those who are still its victims.

Give him the strength to find family time and privacy, and help him remember that even though he is president, a father only gets one shot at his daughters' childhoods.

And please, God, keep him safe. We know we ask too much of our presidents, and we're asking FAR too much of this one. We know the risk he and his wife are taking for all of us, and we implore you, O good and great God, to keep him safe. Hold him in the palm of your hand – that he might do the work we have called him to do, that he might find joy in this impossible calling, and that in the end, he might lead us as a nation to a place of integrity, prosperity and peace.


A Request for Justice

Sean_William_Kennedy   We don't get these kinds of requests very often, but this one seems to be a simple enough one with which to comply that we thought we would share it.

In May of 2007, Stephen Andrew Moller punched Sean Kennedy, a 20-year-old Gay man who lived in Greenville, SC, in the face so violently that Kennedy's brain separated from its stem; Kennedy died several hours later. Despite the unprovoked nature of the assault and the homophobic slurs that Moller made both before and after the murder, Moller was plea bargained down to involuntary manslaughter and given a suspended sentence of 3 years in prison.

Sean Kennedy was murdered because he was Gay. This crime happened in our own community and it strikes fear into the hearts of us all. Moreover, the injustice of this case was outrageous.

Sean's murderer could be out of prison on parole as early as next month, meaning that he will have served only 8 months since his sentencing. We must protest this injustice and ask the parole board to make Moller serve the remainder of his sentence. It is critical that they hear from as many people as possible.

Join us in supporting Sean Kennedy's family and Sean's Last Wish and consider writing a letter to the parole board asking them to deny Stephen Moller parole and make him serve out his sentence, which will end in September 2009. In your letter, please remind the board of the violent and unprovoked nature of Moller's offense and the pain and suffering it has caused in the lives of Sean Kennedy's family and friends. If you knew Sean or know his family personally, please include that information.

Also, please let Elke Kennedy know if you send a letter and if possible, send her a copy of the letter at, so she can have them to take with her to the parole hearing.

It is important to to include Moller's full name and ID number:

Stephen Andrew MollerSCDC ID # 00328891.

Letters should be addressed and sent to:

Department of Probation Pardon and Parole Services

2221 Devine Street, Suite 600, PO Box 50666

Columbia SC 29250

Please forward to your contacts, friends and family.

A Prophet in His Own Land

Boyd-prophet-cover[1]   We're pleased to find out that the esteemed Richard Labonte has named our latest book (on the left there) as one of the Top Ten Nonfiction Books of 2008.

Here is what Richard had to say:

 A Prophet in His Own Land: A Malcolm Boyd Reader, Selected  Writings 1950-2007, edited by Bo Young and Dan Vera (White Crane Books/Lethe  Press, $30)

 "Over the years, Boyd has written or edited more than 30  books, from which the editors have carefully culled the prose and the  prayers comprising this rich reader of a gay elder's always-questioning, never-faltering activist faith—selections spanning more than 50 years that distill Boyd's wisdom wonderfully."


I mean…it's special enough to have had the pleasure of working with Malcolm Boyd…but then we get to be acknowledged. That's the kind of thing that makes you want to get up in the morning and go to work!


And we're in excellent company…here are the other books on Richard Labonte's list:


 My Miserable, Lonely, Lesbian Pregnancy, by Andrea  Askowitz (Cleis Press, $14.95) In this memoir about "40 weeks and five days in hell," Askowitz milks self-professed misery over her pregnancy for captivating comic effect. The ordeals of becoming a single mother—finding sperm, inserting it, week after dateless week—are chronicled in a diary that's winsomely whiny and harrowingly honest.


Crisis: 40 Stories Revealing the Personal, Social, and Religious Pain and Trauma of Growing Up Gay in America, edited by Mitchell Gold with Mindy Drucker (Greenleaf Press, $23.95) These personal accounts of rejection by parents, renunciation by churches, and ridicule from and physical attacks by peers link generations and genders through their depiction of the heroism of survival. In a perfect world, every school library would have a copy.


 Intersex (for Lack of a Better Word), by Thea Hillman (Manic D Press, $14.95) Hillman's sprightly essays add an intersex's story—please don't call us hermaphrodites, pleads the author—to the queer literary spectrum. The author writes about a muddled medical childhood, her emergence as  an intersex activist, and the women (and men) in her life, neatly blending the political and the sensual.


The Memoirs of a Beautiful Boy, by Robert Leleux (St. Martin's $23.95) Debut memoirist Leleux bests both David Sedaris and Augusten Burroughs as a raconteur of wacky family tales with this rollicking story of growing up queer in East Texas. The author confesses to taking some license with veracity, but depictions of his gold-digging mother's fashion and surgical excesses, and of how he found himself falling in love with a Cajun choreographer, resound with wickedly sincere truths.


About My Life and the Kept Woman, by John Rechy (Grove Press, $24) Rechy writes with eloquent elegance about growing up Mexican-American in El Paso, where "Juan" often passed as "Johnny" because of the light skin he inherited from his angry Scottish father; about the double life hiding his poverty from better-off friends; about shying away from his true sexuality while in the military during the Korean War; and, most compellingly, about how he became the street-wise, tough-guy hustler of City of Night.


Sex Talks to Girls: A Memoir, by Maureen Seaton (Terrace Books/University of Wisconsin Press, $26.95) As "Molly Meek," poet Seaton tracks her passage from religious orthodoxy to sobriety and sexual exuberance—a journey marked by drag kings, butches, all kinds of over-indulgence, and a couple of kids to care for along the way—with writing that is heroically revealing and  often very funny.


King of Shadows, by Aaron Shurin (City Lights, $16.95) Shurin's brief essays reveal a multitude of selves: the young student diving with sensual pleasure into sexual San Francisco; the homemaker enthralled by how sunlight adds sheen to his natural pine floors; the "lovechild of Denise Levertov and Robert Duncan" dedicating his soul to the purity of poetry. Resonant fragments coalesce into a vibrant mini-autobiography.


Sparkling Rain and Other Fiction from Japan of Women Who Love Women, edited by Barbara Summerhawk and Kimberly Hughes (New Victoria, $16.95) Two fascinating books are crammed—small type, narrow margins—into this groundbreaking anthology. The first: illuminating essays on the sexual, social, and literary culture of Japanese women. The second: revelatory short stories (plus poetry, manga, and a screenplay) about women loving women in an overwhelmingly patriarchal culture. Part fiction, part nonfiction—but the latter makes this one special.


The Dictionary of Homophobia: A Global History of Gay  & Lesbian  Experience, edited by Louis-Georges Tin (Arsenal Pulp  Press, $44.95) More than 70 scholars contributed 160 mini-essays to this wide-ranging survey of where and how in the world homophobia continues  to resonate. It's an invaluable eye-opener for North American-centric queer activists who believe that many battles have been won. Originally published in France in 2003, this ambitious translation from a small Canadian press is an honorable achievement.

The 2009 National LGBTI Health Summit: The Call


Announcing a Call to Action

 Please join us for

LGBTI Health Through the Life Course

The 2009 National LGBTI Health Summit,

in conjunction with the BiHealth Summit

August 14 – 18, 2009 in Chicago


About the Summit

The 2009 National LGBTI (Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender Intersex) Health Summit is an event dedicated to preserving and improving the emotional, physical, spiritual, intellectual, psychological, environmental, and social health and wellness of LGBTI people, a population that continues to experience significant health disparities because of its members’ sexual orientations and/or gender identities.

We welcome all individuals who support the health and well-being of LGBTI people as well as all members of the community (no previous health experience necessary) to explore what it means to be a healthy LGBTI person, living in a healthy LGBTI community.


We invite you to spend a few days in Chicago working intensively with colleagues from all over the nation and world who are grappling with similar challenges, and engage in deep thinking and extended discussion about innovative programming related to the theme of “LGBTI Health Through the Life Course.”

We are especially excited to be holding this summit in the year marking the 40th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots, the event frequently cited as the beginning of the LGBTI rights movement. The Stonewall Riots was a series of spontaneous, raucous demonstrations against a police raid that took place in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969 at the Stonewall Inn of New York City. in response to a government-sponsored system that persecuted homosexuals, and started the modern gay rights movement in the United States and around the world.

This summit is different from traditional health conferences. Our LGBTI Health Summits (previously in Boulder, Colorado; Cambridge, Massachusetts; and most recently in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) have been described as nurturing retreats, exciting and intense think tanks, and an event of great enlightenment. Participants come away with a renewed passion for the cause, energized and inspired to tackle the problems confronting LGBTI health and wellness.

The Summit is a chance for all participants to reach out across differences in sexual and gender identity, ethnicity, race, age, and socioeconomic status and begin to work toward common goals. We avoid a focus on celebrities and big names, and we take plenty of time to relax, have fun, and make meaningful contact with other participants.


Uncle_sam_pointing_finger We Need You

The Summit needs the input of those who face daunting questions and formidable challenges as well as those who have succeeded in creating effective programs and campaigns related to LGBTI health and wellness. We welcome activists as well as researchers, doctors as well as holistic health practitioners, religious and spiritual leaders as well as sex workers. Most of all, we request the participation of ordinary LGBTI-identified people who will share their valuable experiences, questions, and energy as we build a movement around community health and empowerment. We welcome all individuals who support the health and well-being of LGBTI people and all members of the community (no previous health experience necessary) to explore what it means to be a healthy LGBTI person, living in a healthy LGBTI community.

Registration and a call for abstracts will be announced in the first quarter of 2009. In the meantime, you can stay abreast of our work by contacting Cat Jefcoat at or Jim Pickett at We will be disseminating information about the Summit widely as details are finalized. Please stay tuned.

Thank you, and see you in Chicago, August 14 – 18, 2009!

The Chicago Host Committee of the 2009 National LGBTI Health Summit

The Prolific Perry Brass

 Perry Brass Books   White Crane friend and advisor, Perry Brass… will be showing, selling, and autographing some of his books at the 21st Annual Independent & Small Press Book Fair this coming weekend, Saturday, Dec. 6 and Sunday, December 7, from 12:30 pm until about 5:30 pm at the wonderful landmark General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen Building @ 20 East 44th Street in Manhattan (it's on the same block as the Algonquin Hotel). The General Society is the home of the New York Center for Independent Publishing, sponsors of the Fair, and Perry will be showing at a table on the mezzanine.

National Book Award

Doty and dog

White Crane is proud to offer our warmest congratulations to White Crane James White Poetry Prize judge and University of Houston professor Mark Doty for his being named as the National Book Award poetry prize-winner for Fire to Fire: New and Selected Poems (HarperCollins).

Doty has taught in the University of Houston Creative Writing Doty_jacket Program since 1999, but next spring he begins teaching at Rutgers University. Fire to Fire brings together new poems with selections from his previous seven collections, including My Alexandria (1993), which won the National Book Critics Circle Award.  There is a wonderful interview with Mark here. And you can see his moving acceptance speech here.


Doty is our judge for the first James White Poetry Prize for White Crane. That winner will be announced in spring 2009.

Jesse’s Journal: A Glass Half Full

Glass half The longest presidential election season in history is over. The campaign that gave us Joe the Plumber, Ralph Nader (again), Sarah Palin, Ron Paul and lipstick on a pig also gave us our most inspiring leader since John F. Kennedy. Historians will look back at the election of Barack Obama as a watershed event, similar to the elections of Thomas Jefferson (1800), Andrew Jackson (1828) and Franklin Delano Roosevelt (1932). Obama’s victory may be attributed to a brilliant campaign carried out by him and on his behalf, along with a collapsing economy and a near-total repudiation of George W. Bush and his eight year reign. Though John McCain is not responsible for much of the Bush Administration’s crimes, follies and misfortunes, he linked himself to the president’s policies at a time when they were becoming increasingly unpopular.
The Bush Administration, with its “my way or the highway” foreign policy, preemptive wars, disregard for civil liberties and the environment, its use of water boarding and other torture devices and creation of the Guantanamo Bay Detention Camp, has earned the enmity of the entire world. Since this election, for the first time since 2001, Americans are once again liked and respected by others. Though Barack Obama is far from perfect, and is likely to disappoint us the way that Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton did before, his administration will be a welcome change from the Bush regime. Thanks to Obama, black and brown boys and girls will dare to dream high; even to achieve the highest post in the land. And while women were not yet able to break the glass ceiling, the example of Hillary Clinton – and, yes, Sarah Palin – will inspire other women to reach for the stars.
Not everything came out right in the elections of 2008. The biggest disappointment was the passage of constitutional amendments in Arizona, California and Florida that banned same-sex marriage in those states. Combined with passage of an amendment in Arkansas that will prohibit the adoption of children by “unmarried” (mostly Gay) couples, these initiatives gave social conservatives a degree of satisfaction that was denied to them on the presidential level. Though the Arizona and Florida amendments were bad enough, the California initiative (Proposition 8) was especially cruel, for it deprived Lesbian and Gay couples of a right to marry that they had already enjoyed. In approving Proposition 8, Californians also voted against their own self interest, for the Gay marriage industry brought much-needed revenue to the Golden State.
Too much has been written about Black support for the anti-Gay amendments, in California and elsewhere. Some white Gays complained that African-Americans, themselves longtime victims of discrimination, voted to deprive the rights of others on the same day that they helped elect one of their own. But it is unfair (if not racist) to blame the “black vote” for our recent defeats. Proposition 8 would have passed even if every African-American voter had stayed at home on November 4. The majorities of all colors who voted for Proposition 8 and the other anti-GLBT initiatives shared a conservative religious and cultural bent. Catholics, Evangelicals and Mormons of all races joined forces to “protect” the institution of marriage from the specter of same-sex unions. On the other hand, liberal Jews, Unitarians and freethinkers voted against these measures.
  Gay Freedom That the GLBT community is disappointed, shocked and angry by recent electoral losses is no surprise, and I share those emotions. But we have gone through electoral ups and downs before, and always managed to come through. On a happier note, Connecticut voters failed to call for a constitutional convention that might have repealed that state’s recent legalization of same-sex marriage. And Jared Polis, a Democrat for Colorado, was elected to Congress, joining Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and Barney Frank of Massachusetts. So is 2008's electoral glass half empty or half full? The glass is more than half full with the promise of an Obama presidency (and a more progressive Congress), and less than half empty with the passage of homophobic state initiatives. But when you think about it, all things considered, our glass is really half full, even in California. This is not the end, and we will carry on. We must not become despondent by our electoral defeats, nor complacent by Obama’s great victory. Instead, we must continue to work as hard as we can, in good times and bad, in order to make our world a better place to live in.
Jesse Monteagudo is a freelance author and gay activist who lives in Florida, “a great state with horrible rulers.”  Send him a note at