Wednesday, January 31, 2007

That gay hot spot, Cleveland, Ohio

Not a legal item, but I couldn't help commenting on today's article in the Plain Dealer, "Visitors bureau hoping to draw gay vacationers." It begins:
For some gay tourists, the thought of traveling to Ohio is about as pleasant as vacationing in Iran. Or Uganda. It's not a place they are thinking about going.
The Convention and Visitors Bureau of Greater Cleveland hopes to change their minds.
However well-intentioned, I can't help regarded this particular project as, well, comical. Ohio, with one of the nation's most sweeping anti-gay constitutional amendments? Ohio, where a few years back we elected an attorney-general fond of comparing gay people to pyromaniacs and livestock? And Cleveland? At least Columbus would sort of make sense. And if Cleveland thinks the queer community is flush with cash to ease its economic woes, they've got another thing coming.

But progress does wear some strange faces, and this is surely one of them. And hey, it's not that crazy; we just replaced our nutjob homophobic state officials with ones who, as much as anyone in Midwestern government dares, embrace LGBT rights. This initiative may even spark some positive local dialogue about how to create a more welcoming community.

Meanwhile, though, I wonder whether it's possible to sue a tourism board for misrepresentation...

2 comments:

willyboy said...

You should remember that Cleveland is not necessarily the State of Ohio. Yes even most Clevelanders are embarrased by the States backward moves made by the past state administration. You also have to remember that Cleveland is the largely democratic section of the state, with southern Ohio carrying the Republican point of view. The Cleveland area is clearly a victim of this backward mentality of the State legislature, but you can easily look at the local Cleveland area initiatives that may lable it differently before calling for fraud.

Harper Jean Tobin said...

You seem to have failed to notice my tongue in my cheek, sir. After all, I am one of those Clevelanders.