Following up on its attention-grabbing antics of last week when it ran a blank stretch of space on its front page to emphasize the Obama campaign's decision not to do an interview with the paper, the Philadelphia Gay News continues its campaign this week with the front page with the complaint that it's been "1,529 days" since Obama interviewed with the "local gay press."
The complaint last week in a PGN editorial was that "It has now been 1,522 days since Obama has been accessible to our community." Now that the Advocate has snagged an interview with him, the PGN complaint has shifted, essentially, to kvetching that Barack Obama won't interview with me!
PGN publisher Mark Segal, in a press release this morning highlighted four "questions of importance to the LGBT community of Pennsylvania":
1. Why has he not spoken with local gay media in 1529 days?
2. Why has he accepted only two interviews with gay media since 2004?
3. Why interview only with gay media when in damage control now that the national LGBT press is urging you to talk to us, not at us?
4. Finally, with all due respect Senator, you've now avoided answering the single most important question which PGN readers must ask. The LGBT community of Pennsylvania wants to know your stand on the anti gay marriage state constitutional legislation currently before the Pennsylvania Senate.
You know, when three of your four "important" questions are essentially re-phrased versions of Barack Obama won't interview with me! then there's a bit of a substance problem to the complaint. The idea that we don't know anything about Obama's positions on GLBT issues -- or, conversely, that we now have some special insight into the mind of Hillary Clinton because she interviewed with PGN or Kevin Naff at the Blade -- is a non-starter because the positions have been spelled out, they've been discussed in public events, and they've been covered in press both mainstream and niche. And if you're a reporter who wants to know a candidate's position on a particular issue -- say, a Pennsylvania anti-marriage amendment -- you call the campaign office, ask them, and report the response (or non-response).
Tempest? Meet the teapot.