Today In Gay – September 29th: Judy Garland, and Hitchcock, and Closet Case GOP’s. OH MY!
1948 – Rope, an Alfred Hitchcock film with a gay subtext, opens in theaters. Based on the play of the same name by Patrick Hamilton and adapted by Hume Cronyn it was inspired by the real-life thrill kill murder of 14-year-old Bobby Franks in 1924 by gay University of Chicago students Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb.
The screenplay written by Arthur Laurents starred Farley Granger and John Dall, both of whom were also gay.
1963 – Judy Garland’s variety show debuts Sunday on CBS. While Judy Garland herself was popular with critics and fans, unfortunately the variety show itself was not.
CBS put the show up against Bonanza, then the fourth most popular program on television,and consistently performed poorly in the ratings. Although fans rallied in an attempt to save the show, CBS cancelled it after a single season.
TV Guide included the series in their 2013 list of 60 shows that were “Cancelled Too Soon”
1992 – Actor, singer, and songwriter Paul Jabara (Last Dance) dies from AIDS at the age of 44. Jabara wrote Donna Summer’s “Last Dance” from Thank God It’s Friday, Barbra Streisand’s song “The Main Event/Fight”(1979), and co-wrote the Weather Girls hit, “It’s Raining Men” with Paul Shaffer. Paul Jabara won both Grammy Award for Best R&B Song and the Academy Award for Best Original Song for “Last Dance” from TGIF in which he also played the role of Carl, the lovelorn and nearsighted disco goer.
2006 – Closet case Republican congressman Mark Foley (from Florida) resigns after Instant Messages of a sexual nature between him and underage male Congressional pages are revealed.
Foley had served as chairman of the House Caucus on Missing and Exploited Children and led legislation to make federal sex offender laws harsher. Federal authorities had said the explicit IM messages could result in Foley’s prosecution, under some of the same laws he helped to enact but in the end Foley was not charged with any crime.
Foley is now in the real estate business in Palm Beach, Florida.
2012 – California becomes the first state to ban gay conversion therapy on minors to “cure” them of their homosexuality.