Homer July 4th emcee "would not say the words lesbian or gay" *Updated with contact info

Tim White, DJ at K-WAVE, was the emcee who dissed the LGBT float in Homer's July 4th parade, and Jennifer Baker of Homer PFLAG wrote this letter to the local newspapers about the incident:
I am writing on behalf of the Homer Chapter of PFLAG, to express my heartfelt appreciation to the community of Homer for the cheers and support we received for our float during this year's 4th of July Parade. This year, PFLAG (Parents, Friends of Lesbians and Gays) marched with the newly-formed Homer Youth Gay-Straight Alliance, in order to strengthen efforts at providing support and solidarity for LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgendered) youth in Homer.

I am also writing to express my concern about the significant omissions by the emcee of this year's parade, Tim White, while he was reading the description of our organizations and float. Rather than reading the prepared statement as written, he omitted the names of our organizations and would not say the words lesbian or gay, which were part of our statement. This omission was quite obvious and did not appear to be accidental.

It is tragic to think that this incident might be related to anything other than a logistical mishap, especially on a day when we are celebrating a day that is all about freedom. It is my sincere hope, and that of Homer PFLAG, that the Homer Chamber of Commerce is committed to having the voice of the 4th of July Parade be one that would never in any way be associated with discrimination, censorship, or homophobia.

Some people have said, "Why do those gay people need to have a special float in the parade at all?" I would answer, that the reality of discrimination and ignorance towards LGBT people is very real in Homer, Alaska---particularly for young people. The intention of PFLAG and the GSA in our community is to promote equal treatment of all people---regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. In the words of the ACLU, "freedom does not protect itself." Silence is deadly---and the silence of this year's parade emcee has given us an opportunity to speak a bit louder.
White owes an apology to PFLAG, the GSA and the people of Homer! And the Homer Chamber of Commerce needs to choose emcees who will read the LGBT group's prepared statement as it's written, the same way they introduce all the other floats and marchers.

Make sure the LGBT youth of Homer are not dissed again - Call the Homer Chamber of Commerce at 907-235-7740, or write a letter to the Homer Tribune and the Homer News.

And if White doesn't apology, don't listen to K-WAVE.


Anonymous said...

So many Alaskan DJ's overstep boundaries with hateful and humiliating, disrespectful and offensive rhetoric and personal attacks - like Eddie Burke labeling protesters as 'baby killing maggots' or a duo joking about peeing in an Athabascan. Rarely do they face censure or public backlash.

But a local radio personality that is supposed to represent the community unilaterally omits the identity of a group to a seemingly supportive crowd?

I think we've found someone that is both a pussy and a dick at the same time.

E. Ross said...

And it's the only group he wouldn't introduce!

The post was updated with contact info, if you'd like to add your voice.

aksala said...

I am dismayed and angry to hear that this blatantly purposeful omission happened on a day when we were supposed to be celebrating freedom and the diversity that that freedom brings.

Shame on Mr. White for trying to be coy in his discrimination. I hope he owns up to this and apologizes. Sadly, I don't think this will happen.

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