Thursday, September 27, 2012

SF Ex Scoops Bay Times:
Drag Nuns to Disrupt Catholic Rite

On Sunday, I blogged about a very incomplete story in the print and online versions of the Bay Times stating that unnamed activists were organizing to disrupt the installment of San Francisco's new Catholic archbishop.

Unbelievably, the Bay Times piece written by Dennis McMillan, who is also part of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and goes by the nom de drag Sister Dana Van Iniquity, omitted the name of the group behind the October action at St. Mary's Cathedral.

Today's SF Examiner, in an excellent piece penned by Dan Schreiber, provides the details Sister Dana omitted from her Bay Times story:

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence — a group of gay-rights activists whose members satirically wear the garb of Roman Catholic nuns — is furious about the recent naming of Oakland Bishop Salvatore Cordileone to lead San Francisco’s 91-parish archdiocese. The Sisters are targeting Cordileone mostly for his central role in advocacy and fundraising for Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage statewide in 2008 . . . 

While activists aren’t saying exactly what they plan to do for Cordileone’s Oct. 4 installation mass at St. Mary’s Cathedral, they’re signaling something more than garden-variety picketing. 

“Traditional demonstrations with signs don’t work anymore,” said Sister Zsa Zsa Glamour, who declined to provide a real name. “We’re still deciding on how best to respond to his installation.” 

George Wesolek, an archdiocese spokesman, said church leaders are aware of the protests and security measures are being put in place. 

“We are going to be fully secure,” Wesolek said . . .“They have to stay off the plaza. The police will be there, of course — we want to disrupt any attempt to disrupt the ceremonies.” 

Thanks, SF Examiner, for giving readers the "who" info that should have been in the Bay Times story.

Having two professional and impartial LGBT papers in this town would is a great benefit to the community, but both the Bay Times and the Bay Area Reporter suffer from serious ethical lapses.

In the case of the Bay Times, it can't decide if it wants to be publisher Betty Sullivan's high school newspaper giving space and glowing attention to her political and social network pals, or a serious publication adhering to journalistic ethics providing essential details like who is organizing an action.

With the BAR, the reporting standards are much higher but it fails to disclose publisher Thomas Horn's donations to politicians and ballot propositions when writing about them, hasn't covered how a big advertiser, the San Francisco AIDS Foundation, spent more than 58% of AIDS Walk revenue on expenses, and omits the fact that the Bob A. Ross Foundation, started by the paper's original publisher and now operated by Horn, contributes robust five- and six-figure checks to local charities covered by the paper.

This valid and constructive criticism of our local gay publications aside, you can count on lots of media coverage when the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence show up at St. Mary's next week to offer their own rituals as the new archbishop assumes his new clerical position.

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