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Gerber/Hart Library Marks 25 Years

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Photos by Jean Albright and Amy Wooten


Gerber/Hart Library, the Midwest's largest GLBT library and archives, celebrated 25 years of service to the GLBT community last weekend with two events. They held a sold-out gala Saturday night, followed by a 'Good Morning Savage,' both events featuring gay writer Dan Savage.

A 25th-anniversary cake was cut during the benefit, and past Gerber/Hart presidents were honored for their service.

At the Sunday event, Savage remarked on current events, including the resignation of U.S. Rep. Mark Foley last week after allegations that he engaged in lurid e-mail exchanges with underage males. 'It's those who scream and yell who are dealing with internal stuff, especially sex. Those who hold it in, not having relationships, letting the pressure build up ... that's when fucked up things happen. Shove people into closets and you'll have three million Mark Foleys.'

He said he gets asked about if he cares about how his writings have affected the Sen. Rick Santorum children. 'There are very few of those. He ( Santorum ) compared gays to dog fuckers and there're many more kids of gay parents ... who have dogs. How does it all affect them?'

Asked if, as a sex advice columnist, he had any limits, he said 'Children, necrophilia and poop. So if you are fucking dead infants and shitting on them, then that's wrong.'

Does he consider himself a role model for gay kids? Some write to him saying that, based on his column, he is their role model. He said that his column is mostly joking, whereas he was able to be a role model in real life to a young performer.

'That was real. When he talked to me about coming out, I told him to do it, that his family was probably just waiting to be told. It didn't go that way. It was a shit-hitting-fan moment. But my mom called his mom and said, 'Look, if you want a kid to be a prostitute or get into drugs and drinking, keep doing what you're doing.' She beat up on her pretty bad.'

Since, he said, she has become a supportive mom and a friend of Savage's family.

'A favorite part of my work is going to colleges, where I can do something to undo the damage done by abstinence education. One guy tried to enlist me to back him up in telling his girlfriend that if he stopped thrusting after ejaculation, she couldn't get pregnant. That the thrusting is what 'broke the eggs open.' Damage? Yes, people are more clueless about sex now than ever.'

His adopted son DJ thought when he was younger that all kids had books written about them when they were born. Savage and his partner plan to adopt again and will not know the sex of the child in advance this time.

Gerber/Hart Library is located at 1127 W. Granville Ave., Chicago, 6066, ( 773 ) 381-8030, e-mail . Hours: Wednesday and Thursday 6-9 p.m.; Friday, Saturday, and Sunday noon-4 p.m. See .

— Jean Albright

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