Sunday, January 18, 2009

Gene Robinson’s Invocation Shoved Into HBO’s Closet

(H/T Jim Burroway of Box Turtle Bulletin)

When the Obama Inaugural committee announced that the Rt. Rev. Gene Robinson, the first openly gay Episcopal Bishop, would deliver the invocation at the “We Are The One” concert at the Lincoln Memorial, it was seen as an olive branch to the gay community, still seething over the selection of Rick Warren to deliver the invocation for the Inauguration itself.

The announcement that Rick Warren was selected came just days after Warren compared gay relationships to incest, child rape and polygamy. But by pointing out that Rev. Robinson’s invocation would come at the start of the HBO-aired live concert in front of one of America’s best-loved memorials, this high-profile announcement was portrayed as a separate-but-almost-equal bookend to Warren’s invocation at the Capital steps.

Well, except it turned out not to be nearly so equal. In yet another deep insult to injury, HBO did not air Rev. Robinson’s invocation. The salve to the gay community meant to calm the outrage over Warren’s selection was for naught. Hundreds of millions around the world will hear Warren’s invocation on Tuesday. But today, the only ones to hear Rev. Robinson’s prayer were those thousands who were present at the mall. Robinson’s prayer wasn’t aired live, nor was it aired during the 7:00 p.m. rebroadcast.

And guess what else was shoved into the closet? The D.C. Gay Men’s Chorus singing with Josh Groban. Unlike every other performer, they came and went without being identified.

These snubs are inexcusable. Did HBO cave in the face of conservative outcries over Rev. Robinson’s selection for this event? Did the Inaugural committee rush Rev. Robinson onstage and off before the broadcast was slated to begin? Whatever the case may be, this is a cold slap. HBO has some serious explaining to do, as does the Inaugural committee.

Harvey Milk is screaming in his metaphorical grave right now.

You can call HBO at 212-512-1208 Monday through Friday from 9:00 AM until 5:00 PM Eastern Time.

Update: Courtesy of Mike Tidmus, here are some additional contacts at HBO:

Quentin Schaffer
Executive Vice President
HBO Corporate Communications
Phone 212-512-1329

Jeff Cusson
Senior Vice President
HBO Corporate Communications
Phone 212-512-1343

Click here to read Rev. Robinson’s invocation.

1 comment:

Bud Evans said...

MY TAKE ON IT ... by Bud Evans

NEWSFLASH -- Just in… it seems that Roy and Silo, the two Gay chinstrap penguins from the Central Park Zoo in Manhattan were reunited and flown to the South Pole after officials on the Obama Presidential Inaugural Committee gave them permission to hold a pre-inaugural ceremony and prayer for Obama in Antarctica.

These Gay love birds had been carefully chosen to be joint Masters of Ceremony at a glorious celebration commemorating our new Fuhrer. And like the Bishop Robinson futile egg-hunt at the Lincoln Memorial on Sunday (where no eggs were to be found), this event was also to be held several days before the “real” inauguration, and far enough away, so as not to generate too much press attention and stress for the incoming Obama administration.

The theme of this occasion, as well as the Ball following it (which was generously arranged by the HRC at the South Pole) was titled: “Out of Sight; Out of Mind In Our New Obama Nation”.

Rainbow-colored leg-warmers and sequined purple parkas were furnished, free of charge, by Uncle Tom’s Fashion Wear; while the US Military volunteered to fly in and to air-drop guests at the event (parachutes, of course, were optional).

Entertainment was provided by Ellen DeGeneres doing her famous “Step ‘em, Fetch it” dance routine to be taped and telecasted later for her post-menopausal hetero plantation mamas; while music was furnished by The Mormon Tabernacle Choir which handed out magic underwear and free “sexual re-orientation” tickets to heaven after the event.

Finally, refreshments consisted of good old fashion Jim Jones Kool-Aid -- complements of both the Democratic and Republican Members of the House and the Senate.

A great time was expected to be had by all of the survivors.

UPDATE: HBO, CNN, NBC and all of the major TV news outlets did not cover this event either. According to new rules to be established at the FCC during the incoming Obama administration, any mention of homosexuality, along with analog signals, will cease broadcasting after Feb. 17, 2009.

That is all.

~ Bud Evans