Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Day Without a Gay' (The Chicago Tribune)
Homosexuals urged to skip work
December 9, 2008
The HR office has probably never encountered this before: People across the country are being urged to skip work Wednesday after calling in "gay."
The loosely organized protest, called "Day Without a Gay," (www.daywithoutagay.org) is intended as a statement against California's ban on same-sex marriage, along with other political developments considered anti-gay.
Some are calling for a boycott of all economic activity to highlight the gay community's financial power. Others want gays and lesbians to spend the day volunteering for worthy causes to demonstrate their compassion, which could win new sympathy to their cause.
In Chicago, the Gay Liberation Network has called for an 11 a.m. rally outside the County Building, 118 N. Clark St., to call for granting marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Network co-founder Andy Thayer said he didn't expect people to actually "call in gay," but added that "many people will find one way or the other to not be in work that day, because we're sick of being treated like second-class citizens."
The motto has stirred a tempest of online debate about the wisdom of skipping work during a recession. Sean Hetherington, a West Hollywood, Calif., comic and personal trainer who helped devise the event, said the slogan wasn't meant to be taken literally. But noting the flood of media attention it has attracted, he was unapologetic.
"I'm happy with the way we did it," he said. "We're keeping gay people in the spotlight."