QUOTES from the Play and Study Materials
“The Laramie Project” at Acton-Boxborough Regional High School (ABRHS) Fall 2007
I. From the play itself
The book version of The Laramie Project by Moises Kaufman (from which all quotations below are taken) is used as the script for the ABRHS production. The book cover calls Shepard’s murder “a national symbol of intolerance.”
VIOLENCE: just a few passages in play describing grisly details of the murder (similar images and descriptions recur frequently): Police officer Fluty, on arriving at murder scene and finding Matthew: When I got there, the first – at first the only thing I could see was partially somebody’s feet, and I got out of my vehicle and raced over – I seen what appeared to be a young man, thirteen, fourteen years old because he was so tiny laying on his back and he was tied to the bottom end of a pole. I did the best I could. The gentleman that was laying on the ground, Matthew Shepard, he was covered in dry blood all over his head, there was dry blood underneath him and he was barely breathing … he was doing the best he could. I was going to breathe for him and I couldn’t get his mouth open – his mouth wouldn’t open for me. He was covered in, like I said, partially dry blood and blood all over his head – the only place that he did not have any blood on him, on his face, was what appeared to be where he had been crying down his face. His head was distorted – you know, it did not look normal – he looked as if he had a real harsh head wound. [She also describes how he was bound. And later:] … when I got to the fence … It was just such an overwhelming amount of blood…
The student who found the body says: I noticed something – which ended up to be Matt, and he was just lying there by the fence, and I – I just thought it was a scarecrow. I was like, Halloween’s coming up … And, uh, got closer to him, and I noticed his hair – and that was a major key to me noticing it was a human being – was his hair. ‘Cause I just thought it was a dummy, seriously, I noticed – I even noticed the chest going up and down, I still thought it was a dummy, you know… [later:] I keep seeing that picture in my head when I found him.” [Also, there are descriptions from the doctor at the hospital about the extremity of Matthew’s injuries.]
At the court arraignment of the attackers: “I don’t think there was any person who was left in that courtroom who wasn’t crying at the end of it. I mean it lasted – five minutes, but it kept on getting more and more horrific, ending with: Judge: “Said defendants left the victim begging for his life.” The murderer’s confession is included at the end of the play, with sickening details of the brutal beating.
LANGUAGE: examples of foul language in the play:
“shit outta luck” -- “Matt was a blunt little shit” -- “I always say, don’t fuck with a Wyoming queer, cause they will kick you in your fucking ass.” – “a freakin’ nightmare”-- “I was just bullshittin around with my shit” -- “I was in deep-ass sand” – “they better watch their fuckin ass” -- “ask him if he’d ever do anymore tweak” -- “I don’t know if Aaron was fucked up or whether he was coming down [off drugs] or what, but Matthew had money. Shit, he had better clothes than I did. Matthew was a little rich bitch … There was times when I was all messed up on meth… ” -- “pissed him off” -- “good to be with people who felt like shit” -- “why’d you fuck up like that” – “he tried to grab my dick” – “Up there in the max ward … when they found out Aaron was coming to prison, they were auctioning those boys off; ‘I want him. I’ll put aside five, six, seven cartons of cigarettes.’ …” -- “big-ass band of angels” [protester] with “big-ass wings” – “we don’t say a fuckin’ word” -- Police officer who “went out and got shit-faced” [drunk] -- etc.
“HATE CRIME” assumption: The frequent references to homosexuality, gay, lesbian, etc. throughout play, underline the assumption that this murder was about the victim’s homosexuality. Newsperson: “… this small city, which bills itself as Wyoming’s Hometown, wrestled with its attitudes toward gay men.”
One of the play’s goals is to push for hate crimes laws. The Governor of Wyoming at the time is noted in the play to be Republican, opposed to hate crimes legislation.
Gov. Geringer: I am outraged and sickened by the heinous crime committed on Matthew Shepard. I extend my heartfelt sympathies to the family.
Newsperson: Governor, you haven’t pushed for hate crime legislation in the past.
Gov. Geringer: I would like to urge the people of Wyoming against overreacting in a way that gives one group “special rights over others.” …
The character who speaks against the concept of a “hate crime” is tarnished because she calls Matthew a “barfly” who was “spreading AIDS.” (p. 64)
[NOTE: ABC 20/20 documented a lead investigators’ opinion that robbery and drug use were behind the violence, and the continued violent behavior by the two murderers (attacking other people at the bar later that night) seem to confirm this. “New Details Emerge in Matthew Shepard Murder; Killers Talk About Crime That Shocked the Nation” From 20/20, Nov. 26, 2004, http://abcnews.go.com/2020/Story?id=277685&page=1]
FEAR-MONGERING: Early in the play the primary author, Moises Kaufman, says: “The company has agreed that we should go to Laramie for a week and interview people. Am a bit afraid about taking ten people in a trip of this nature. Must make some safety rules. No one works alone. Everyone carries cell phones.” (Since the accused murderers were in custody at this point, the insinuation is that other Laramie citizens are dangerous too.)
A Laramie police investigator lays fear in the gay and lesbian community at the feet of “people who hold with the old ideals… and I’m not gonna put up with it, and I’m not going to listen to it.” An “out lesbian” professor character in the play says: “I know how to take care of myself, and I was irrationally terrified. So what that means is, not letting my 12-year-old son walk the streets, seeing a truck do a U-turn and thinking it’s coming after me. Having to stop because I’m shaking so bad.” A second lesbian character talks about her fears after the murder: “…somewhere inside we know it could happen to us anytime.” She later says of the murderer: “I want to make sure that guy’s ass dies” [gets the death penalty].
Newsperson: “What happened to Matthew was … an extreme version of what happens in our schools on a daily basis.” (p. 47) Newsperson says it is an “apparent anti-gay hate crime” forcing many in the community to “search their souls.” (p. 62)
ANTI-CHRISTIAN BIAS: The liberal Unitarian minister is portrayed as the enlightened one in town. “And most Americans believe, and they do, that the Bible is the word of God, and how you gonna fight that?” Fred Phelps (“God is a hater” preacher) is used to portray conservative Christians. A young lesbian college student hold counter-protest against Phelps at the murder trial, dressing participants in angel outfits with huge wings to block vision of Phelps and his signs. She is glamorized. Her message: God protects homosexuals and condemns any condemnation of homosexuality.
The Catholic priest, very positively portrayed in the play, suggests his Bishop might be opposed to a “vigil” for the victim but without saying why, and says he must do the “right thing” no matter what the Bishop might order. He says that name-calling of homosexuals is violence -- like the murder. (pp. 65-66) The refusal of other ministers to take part in vigil for Matthew is presented as purely negative; but might they have held back because the vigil’s message was undefined?
The Baptist minister is implicitly ridiculed for preaching “The word [of the Lord] is either sufficient or it is not.” “He has very biblical views about homosexuality…” His hope that Matthew repented before dying is portrayed as hateful, while he also said he thought the murderers deserved the death penalty. (pp. 68-69) Ditto the Mormon leader: “we absolutely believe that God still speaks to man. … God has set boundaries. There’s no sexual deviation in the Mormon Church.” The Unitarian minister implies both of these church leaders are at the extreme opposite end from his enlightened humanist atheism.
The murder site is presented as a place of religious “pilgrimage”. The Unitarian minister recalls Christ’s words “God, my God, why have you forsaken me” when he’s at the site. So Matthew is presented as a modern Christ figure. The play authors break down in tears after visiting the site.
Tony Kushner’s homosexual propaganda play Angels in America isprominent in The Laramie Project. From a review by L. Higgins (www.AmericansForTruth.org):
Angels in America is filled with obscenity, primarily forms of f**k. And although it addresses forgiveness (albeit not in a Christian sense, but rather, interpersonal forgiveness), compassion, community, and AIDS, it is primarily a pro-”gay” treatise with heavy-handed leftist politicking (e.g., explicit criticism of the Reagan administration) and sacrilege…. Then there is the black, homosexual, drag queen nurse with the heart of gold, Belize, and the Angel with eight vaginae whose visits prompt sexual arousal and orgasm. Heaven is a dreary place that looks like San Francisco after the 1906 earthquake and people sit around on crates playing cards. The Angels say that God has abandoned man…. Angels in America concludes with an emotional speech to the audience about all those homosexuals who have been lost to AIDS who “will be commemorated.” And further that homosexuals “are not going away. . . . We will be citizens. The time has come. . . . You are fabulous creatures. . . . And I bless you. . . . The Great Work Begins.”
The “big-ass band of angel” protesters blocking Fred Phelps with their “big-ass wings” evoke Angels in America (pp. 79-80): “So this big-ass band of angels comes in, we don’t say a fuckin’ word, we just turn our backs to him and we stand there …. And we are a group of people bringing forth a message of peace and love and compassion.” … Yeah, this twenty-one-year-old little lesbian is ready to walk the line with him. … “And I knew that my angels were gonna be taking the brunt of everything he had to yell and say. I mean, we were gonna be blocking his view and he was gonna be like pissed off to all hell…”
Jedadiah Schultz, a college student character, describes how his traditional, conservative Christian parents objected to his delivery of monologue from Angels, and his defiance of their wishes is portrayed as bravery. At the end of the play, he says “I just feel bad … I just can’t believe I ever said that stuff about homosexuals, you know. How did I ever let that stuff make me think that you were different from me?”
Jedadiah is a major character, and serves as a role model for the students watching and acting in the play. He evolves from an obedient Christian son to an “enlightened” college student who promotes acceptance of homosexuality. The implication is that those who disapprove of homosexuality on religious grounds wish to “persecute” them, and in fact “hate” them:
“And the reverend will tell you flat out he doesn’t agree with homosexuality – and I don’t know – I think right now, I’m going through changes, I’m still learning about myself and – you know I don’t feel like I know enough about certain things to make a decision that says, ‘Homosexuality is right.’ When you’ve been raised your whole life that it’s wrong – and right now, I would say that I don’t agree with it – yeah, that I don’t agree with it but – maybe that’s just because I couldn’t do it – and speaking in religious terms – I don’t think that’s how God intended it to happen. But I don’t hate homosexuals and, I mean -- I’m not going to persecute them or anything like that. At all – I mean, that’s not gonna be getting in the way between me and the other person at all. (p. 57)
Jedadiah illogically argues with his parents that they shouldn’t be upset with him for being in Angels in America, since they didn’t have a problem with him playing the murderous Macbeth. This of course misses the fact that Angels (and Laramie) promote homosexuality, while Macbeth does not promote murder (quite the contrary). (p. 86) After his performance, a member of the Laramie Project author’s group records this statement by Jedadiah:
I didn’t for the longest time let myself become personally involved in the Matthew Shepard thing. It didn’t seem real, it just seemed way blown out of proportion. Matthew Shepard was just a name instead of an individual…. I don’t know, it’s weird. It’s so weird, man. I just – I just feel bad. Just for all that stuff I told you, for the person I used to be…. I just can’t believe I ever said that stuff about homosexuals, you know. How did I ever let that stuff make me think that you were different from me?” (p. 98) And Moises Kaufman, lead playwright, says at the very end of the play: “Jedadiah cried when he said good-bye” to the writing group.
WHOLE COMMUNITY RESPONSIBLE FOR MURDER … or at least those who are “haters”:
The HBO teachers’ guide makes it clear, as does the play itself, that Laramie is meant as a metaphor for every community in America. In the play, the idea is floated by a character that all straight people are responsible for the murder (p. 56).
Zubaida, the “Muslim feminist” student, says we all are responsible for this crime: “[at the vigil] I kept feeling like I don’t deserve to feel this bad, you know? And someone got up there and said, ‘C’mon, guys, let’s show the world that Laramie is not this kind of a town.’ But it is that kind of a town. If it wasn’t this kind of a town, why did this happen here?... And we have to mourn this and we have to be sad that we live in a town, a state, a country where shit like this happens. .. I mean, these are people trying to distance themselves from this crime. And we need to own this crime. I feel. Everyone needs to own it. We are like this. We ARE like this. WE are LIKE this.” (p. 59-60)
The President of the University of Wyoming (in Laramie) reads an email he got and which goes unanswered – so its accusations stand in the audience’s memory:
Email: You and the straight people of Laramie and Wyoming are guilty of the beating of Matthew Shepard just as the Germans who looked the other way are guilty of the deaths of the Jews, the Gypsies, and the homosexuals. You have taught your straight children to hate their gay and lesbian brothers and sisters. Unless and until you acknowledge that Matt Shepard’s beating is not just a random occurrence, not just the work of a couple of random crazies, you have Matthew’s blood on your hands.”
The “angels” counter-protest against Fred Phelps glamorizes political activism on behalf of GLBT causes. The organizer was later honored nationally by the Anti-Defamation League, which sponsors the “No Place for Hate” campaign. Its message is that all communities must make an effort to stomp out the “hate” that is present there. (Acton is a formal ADL/”No Place for Hate” community.)
II. Teacher's guide to HBO film of The Laramie Project:"Everybody carries a piece of the truth."
The HBO teacher’s guide states: “Students may even come to view their most basic values – values that have been a part of their families and communities for generations – in a new light.”
Teachers should "… ask students: Could an attack like the one on Shepard occur in your town?" At ABRHS, Mrs. Potter, the play Director, asked one parent exactly that question in an email, and repeated the idea in the Boston Globe article, claiming there are “seeds of hate” in Acton and Boxborough which could lead to such a crime. See below, Communications from ABRHS.]
Teachers are told to have students keep a log of their emotions as they watch film.
Study topics include: “Standing up to hatred; "What concrete steps can you take -- in your school, in your town, in your state and on a national level -- to help prevent anti-gay violence and other forms of prejudice and bigotry?" It encourages students to “create your own project to combat prejudice in your own community…. Hate, prejudice and division can only be conquered by citizen-activists willing to stand up and speak out.”
The teachers’ guide refers students to www.GLSEN.org, the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network, a radical advocacy organization pushing not only normalization of homosexuality and bisexuality, but also transgenderism and transsexuality. GLSEN is behind the gay clubs in high schools, the “Day of Silence” each April, “Ally Day”, and “diversity” events. GLSEN Boston has also been exposed by MassResistance for teaching teens about “fisting” (at its Boston Conference in 2000) and handing out the “Little Black Book” there in 2005 (which instructed kids on fisting and other perversions, stated that anal sex can be safely done, and gave a directory of anonymous-sex hook-up bars in Boston). Recently, GLSEN Boston’s MySpace featured as its 2nd prominent friend a hard-core-porn and anti-Christian (Satanic) site of one “Rev. Cockvomit.” (Only after MassResistance exposed this over the course of several months was it removed.) Even now, the GLSEN Boston MySpace leads students to dangerous liaisons with such groups as BAGLY, the Boston Alliance of Gay Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Youth, led by a “male-to-female transsexual” activist, and many other groups led by and catering to adult homosexuals, bisexuals, and transgender/transsexual people. [This also applies to PFLAG; see below, MatthewShepard.org.]
III. Statements by ABRHS Staff
The ABRHS drama dept flyer says: “This powerful play explores how the citizens of Laramie, Wyoming dealt with the aftermath of the 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard, a gay college student, by two young men from Laramie. Through the voices of those interviewed, the play shows how religion, class, economics, and education, as well as attitudes towards homosexuality, were reflected through this crime.”
Linda Potter, Drama Dept. Head and play Director:
Story in the Boston Globe NorthWest, “Brickbats precede school play” (9-9-07):
Linda Potter, the school's drama director, said she had expected controversy given the play's content and history in other communities. But she said it's not something she jumped into without careful thought. In two years in planning, Potter said, she solicited feedback from faculty and school groups before moving forward with the production. She said she has had overwhelming support from parents, teachers, students, and counselors. "The point is to examine what happens in Laramie and look at whether some of those seeds of hate are here in Acton," Potter said. "I hope it gets people thinking." Potter said most of her productions have been "family-friendly," but this one will not feature singing, dancing, or laugh lines. "Part of my job is to bring to an audience not just quality entertainment, but use theater as a mirror of society and life, and it's not all frothy musicals," she said. "I'm not doing my job if all pieces are light and fun."
Linda Potter, in an email to a parent:
Sent: June 2007
Subject: Re: Laramie Project
Thanks so much for your input and your e mail. I understand that you may be uncomfortable with this. The play was chosen with a great deal of thought, time and care over the past two years. Students were given the chance to give input [note: without parental knowledge or permission], faculty were all polled, a group of English teachers read and discussed the play as literature, administration read the play, including the assistant principal, the principal, the chair of the performing arts department, and the superintendent. The play is a powerful contemporary drama about hate -- what it can do to a student, a family, a town and a nation. It details how a community dealt with a tragedy and asks the hard questions "are the seeds of hate here, could this happen here?" The answer is yes, it could happen here. This play is meant to help people think about their attitudes, not only toward gays, but also to any group that experiences prejudice. There is prejudice here at AB, not as loud or violent as in some places but there are students here who feel it every day. This play is an extremely difficult piece and artistically difficult to pull off. It presents great challenges for our student actors, including deep characterizations and multiple roles for every actor. The quality of literature is in the eye of the beholder, and I feel, and the entire artistic team feels that this is a work that has merit and is worth six months of our time to do. This play is not for everyone. Certainly families with young children should not attend and will be forewarned. Students who participate in this play will need to have permission slips signed by their parents. I certainly understand if parents would prefer that their son or daughter does not do the show. There are many other venues throughout the season that are meant for families -- our musical is Brigadoon, about as PG as a show can get, our spring show may well be Frankenstein, another crowd pleaser. There will be an evening of 20 minute plays that will be appropriate for a family audience along with a Mystery Night and probably a small black box musical. - Linda Potter
Letter from ABRHS Principal to concerned members of the community: “I understand that there may be differences regarding “The Laramie Project”; however, the administration at all levels supports the performance of the play at Acton-Boxborough this fall. We believe that the play encourages us to consider how the seeds of intolerance in a community can lead to violence. We support the safety and rights of all staff and students at Acton-Boxborough, including our GLBT members, and we expect the Acton-Boxborough community to do the same. Such support is essential to ensure a safe teaching and learning environment for all. Sincerely, Stephen A. Donovan”
This implies that there are community members not likely to support the safety and rights of everyone, and the principal lectures the critical members of the community that they’re not behaving properly by complaining. Are complaints about the play “intolerance” or “seeds of intolerance”?
The Acton-Boxborough Superintendent actually gave an interview to the radical homosexual/transgender Boston newspaper, Bay Windows (9-20-07), as if they were a respectable news source. “Bill Ryan, superintendent of the school district, said that despite the opposition from MassResistance and some parents, he believes the community as a whole has no problem with the high school putting on the play. ‘I know this play will be well-received by our community and that our community will support this play. I’m absolutely confident of that,’ said Ryan. The play is scheduled to begin running in early November. Ryan said when Linda Potter, director of the school’s drama department, first approached him and Steve Donavan, principal of the high school, about performing the play, she warned them that it could prove controversial…. Ryan said he and Donavan read the script and felt that the play was an appropriate choice for the fall production. ‘I think the play is really about prejudice and it deals with intolerance, and I think the play’s really hopeful,’ said Ryan.”
A few examples of Bay Windows stories Supt. Ryan may not have been aware of: Attacks on supporters of real marriage as bigots and haters; attacks on the Parkers and Wirthlins of Lexington as unfit parents (for insisting on their legal right to be informed about curriculum materials in their children’s elementary classes dealing with homosexuality and transgenderism); a story after the Pope’s death entitled “Requiem for the Pope’s Penis”; a positive review of a movie about two brothers having an incestuous homosexual relationship, including a description of blow job technique; the wildest imaginable stories about transgender/transsexual people; a celebratory story about a sex-toy store in Brookline; references to sadomasochism; ads for phone sex; ads showing two naked men having sex asking “Which do you prefer?” and “Are you a top or bottom?”; and a general all-out attack on traditional values.
IV. Materials known to be given to participating students (before and during rehearsals). Note that all these materials continue to pound the horrible details of the murder, either quoting material from the play, or giving a summary.
Script of play. Given to students from at least 2006 on, without parents’ knowledge or permission.
Lavender wristband reading “Erase Hate” on one side, www.MatthewShepard.org on the other side. There, students are encouraged to “come out” (as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender); to become active pushing for “hate crimes” legislation, to join an online chat group, etc. The web site leads kids to extremist, activist pro-homosexual/transgender groups such as PFLAG, Human Rights Campaign, ACLU, and www.Tolerance.org (which equates homosexual rights with black civil rights).
Student guide, “The Laramie Project: Everyone Carries a Piece of the Truth” (HBO/Time). Its headers say Laramie is a “deeply moving play about bigotry and tolerance, fear and courage, hate and hope… A brutal killing forces a small Wyoming town to search its soul – and challenges all Americans to confront an enduring hatred.” The play is a “cultural X-ray.” Playwright Kaufman said, “There was also the symbolic nature of the crime: it was a crucifixion.” The murder is called a “brutal hate crime.” The concept of “hate crime” is pushed and is assumed to be beyond debate, and with no factual background (in both student and teacher guides). Students learn, “We all grew up with prejudices. It takes effort to see them as clearly as others do. Human-rights experts recommend starting with our speech and thought patterns. Am I quick to label 'rednecks' or 'liberals'? Do I tell gay jokes? Am I careless with gender descriptions?”
Playwright Kaufman says the play "tries to focus on how we are all different and how we are all the same.... this is an opportunity for students all around the country to meditate on what that meant, and on how they can take steps to prevent another Matthew Shepard from being murdered in their communities and in their schools. There's a line in the film where Father Roger Schmit says that every time someone is called a 'fag' of a 'dyke', that is the seed of violence. It would be interesting for students to look around their school environment and ask, Where are the seeds of violence here?"
“Town in a Mirror: The Laramie Project revisits an American tragedy,” by Don Shewey. This review portrays Focus on the Family, a leading Christian pro-family organization headed by Dr. James Dobson, as a frightening place; scary during and after one of the playwright’s visit: “The New Yorkers [the team of playwrights] arrived in Laramie [to begin their interviews of residents] with a fair amount of trepidation, expecting to encounter a hotbed of Wild West homophobia. Kaufman decreed certain safety rules – no one works alone, and everyone carries a cell phone. Fondakowski and Pierotti, two gay members of the company who had a special interest in finding out about the gay community of Wyoming, prefaced their first trip to Laramie with a visit to Colorado Springs to interview John Paulk. A poster boy for the ex-gay movement that claims sexual orientation can be changed through the power of prayer, Paulk manages homosexuality and gender issues at the right-wing Christian organization Focus on the Family. Fondakowski and Pierotti were curious to explore why such groups had issued statements to the media distancing their work from the murder of Matthew Shepard. [The implication here is that that was a dishonest act, and that they couldn’t really distance themselves from the murder!] Although the Focus on the Family material never made it to the stage, it braced the company for the conservative sexual politics they would face outside New York City. “It’s very scary how organized they are,” says Fondakowski. “They get more mail than anyone in the country but the White House. After spending a couple of days with them, I was really frightened driving into Laramie at dusk. It took me four trips to feel safe jogging there.” Once they hit town and started meeting people, though, the theatre artists found they had to reconsider their stereotypes of small-town Westerners.” (So—the locals are let somewhat off the hook, but the dangling insinuation is that Focus on the Family and Christian pro-family groups are scary and threatening in some unspecified way.)
"THE LARAMIE PROJECT: Moises Kaufman 2000" (from Gale's "Drama for Students" Volume 22, Chapter 11). Besides declaring “prejudice” a major theme of the play, it discusses the “Historical context: gay rights.” Harry Hay is presented as hero, though he was a communist and pagan as well as a radical homosexual. Traditional Values Coalition describes Hay’s Radical Faeries as: “a loosely-knit group of homosexuals who are also involved in witchcraft and other pagan activities. One Radical Faerie web site describes this group as ‘anarchistic, communitarian,’ who engage in ‘free spirit rites, certain ritual practices, inspired by Wiccan and communing with each other and with Nature…’ The Marxist roots of the modern day homosexual movement has been well documented by conservatives over the years.” And the Stonewall riots are presented as heroic: “This night in 1969 would go down in history as the first time gay people fought back” (with no mention of what went on in the bar that provoked the police action). The “gay rights” battle is equated with black civil rights movement.
Surprisingly, noted director Robert Brustein’s criticisms of the play are included. He admits the play is a failure dramatically, and is basically just an argument for hate crimes laws and the normalization of homosexuality. Another critic, Joyce Hart, admits that "although Kaufman appears to be delivering just the facts of the case, he is cleverly manipulating the information" to create a "symphony that stirs the emotions."
Also in this study guide:
"What do I read next?"
"Angels in America" - Tony Kushner [see review above]
"I Am My Own Wife" (German transvestite in Nazi Germany) - directed by Kaufman
"Gross Indecency: The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde" by Kaufman (re: sodomy & pederasty -- these words used in this article).
The works of Oscar Wilde.
John Clum, Acting Gay, re: 20th c American and British plays that involve gay men.
Daniel Helminiak, What the Bible Really Says about Homosexuality
Barbara Perry, In the Name of Hate: Understanding Hate Crimes
V. Other information of note on the play
From Charles Colson, Breakpoint, Oct. 15, 1998: “Don't Blame Us - Who are the Real Hate-mongers?” It was one of the most convoluted sentences I've ever heard. NBC Today Show host Katie Couric was talking to Gov. Jim Garanger [Geringer] about the murder of Matthew Shepard, the gay University of Wyoming student who was beaten to death following a robbery last week. Ms. Couric said: "Governor, some gay rights activists have said that ... organizations like the Christian Coalition ... and Focus on [the] Family are contributing to this anti-homosexual atmosphere by having an ad campaign saying, if you're a homosexual, you can change your orientation." Do you think, Couric asked, that campaigns like this inspire people to try to harm homosexuals? Whoa! Pro-family groups ARE sponsoring ads that lovingly tell people that through the power of Christ, they can break free from homosexual habits. But Couric was trying to get Gov. Garanger to agree that these ads were literally driving people to murder gay men. It's a sorry example of how effectively the gay lobby exploits tragedy to demonize anyone who opposes their political agenda.