Monday, December 7, 2009

Gay Activist Greg Gerard Speaks OUT

In this exclusive audio interview Emmy Winner Charlotte Robinson talks with openly gay author Gregory Gerard about his memoir “In Jupiter's Shadow” which chronicles a Catholic boy's struggle with his sexual orientation. Gerard states, “The concept that emerged as I was writing was people hiding from the truth about themselves and thinking about the people I know and the stories I’ve heard. About people overeating or drinking too much or shopping too much, they have this avoidance. These behaviors we do to avoid the truth about ourselves.” Gerard lives in Rochester, New York, with his partner of eleven years. When asked about New York denying gay marriage in the legislature, he said he was very disappointed. He also voiced his opinion about the majority voting on the rights of a minority. “It’s difficult for me to reconcile that the public majority gets to make a vote on such an important civil rights issue and that becomes the law. To me, that sounds backwards. I think of the civil rights struggles of the 50’s and 60’s and I wonder if that type of mentality had been allowed to make decisions about Afro-Americans rights, whether we would be where we are today.”
Gerard also has a commitment to LGBT youth. “I work with my city's Gay Youth Project to facilitate a monthly writing class/open mic. I feel strongly about helping gay youth "find their own voice" in the struggle for equality. Part of my motivation to write my own story was to give voice to gay religious youth who today might be struggling in silence. A book once saved my life, "The Best Little Boy in the World" by Andrew Tobias, back in 1989. When I read that memoir and identified very strongly with the main character, it finally sunk in that my feelings of isolation were deceptive. If my memoir can help others who struggle feel less condemned by society or religious institutions or God or even themselves, I will feel very blessed indeed.”
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