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Duncan Grant

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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: Northern California
Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 7,895

Journal Archives

Antique photography fans: rediscovered glass plate photographs of San Francisco

Mystery Glass Negatives from Land's End
May 10, 2012

Before there were digital image files and even before there was film, photographers captured images on glass plate negatives. In the collection of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco there are over seventy of these glass plate negatives depicting scenes of Land’s End and old San Francisco. Discovered in the basement of the old de Young, these century-old negatives were in desperate need of cleaning and re-housing. When the negatives came into the paper conservation lab at the Legion of Honor for proper care, the labor intensive project proved a perfect opportunity for pre-program conservation student Jennifer Martinez.

Jennifer began with some sleuthing on the photographers behind the lens. With the help of historians John Freeman and John Martini, she learned that the gelatin dry-plate glass negatives were shot predominantly by the photographers (and brothers) W.C.and J.R. Billington. The Billingtons owned several studios during this time, most notably the Sutro Heights Gallery at the Land’s End Parapet, where they sold specialty views of Seal Rocks, Land’s End and the Golden Gate.

Under the supervision of paper conservator Victoria Binder, Jennifer removed the plates from their envelopes and cleaned them with a bulb blower and soft brush to remove loose dust. Special care was taken on the delicate emulsion, which is the thin layer of image-containing gelatin attached to one side of the glass base.

More at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Male erotica in the LGBT group: Why now? What's changed?

Over the years, the tone of this group/forum has been similar to a 'salon'. We get together (Ls, Gs, Bs, Ts and our straight allies) and share current events, exchange ideas, learn from one another, and commiserate.

In recent months, male erotica threads are becoming more common. It seems to me there are millions of websites where one can view photos of men -- so, I'm wondering why these photos and threads are appearing here now? What's changed?

Personally, I think erotica in this forum/group diminishes its credibility. There's a time and a place for everything; I have nothing against the continuum of sexuality (far from it). I'd like to check in with the community of DU LGBT people and see if I'm alone.

Obviously, I can use the ignore/hide thread function but I thought I'd ask for a little discussion about this first. My request is that we discuss this thoughtfully -- no one is required to be "right" or "wrong".

Many thanks,

p.s. I won't be able to post regular responses (very busy over the next few days) but I will try to check in.

Thank you, President Obama.

Today, I witnessed a transformative presidency.

I have waited decades for a moment like this and I intend to savor it.

The most powerful institutions on the planet have aligned themselves against us and the president has crossed the line to stand with us. That fills me with emotion.

For me, this is a great day. It couldn't have come at a better time.

I'm reminded of this Elie Wiesel quote:

“The opposite of love is not hate, it's indifference. The opposite of art is not ugliness, it's indifference. The opposite of faith is not heresy, it's indifference. And the opposite of life is not death, it's indifference.”

-- Elie Wiesel

Not to put words in your mouth but your hypothetical feels like "indifference" to me.

You asked, "What about if I actively promote 2 or 3 or 10 pro-gay policies; but am agnostic on the equal marriage cause/right, am I a bigot?"

I think if one is "agnostic" on equal marriage but "pro-gay" in many other ways, one doesn't really understand the contemporary struggle of gay people in this hostile culture. And indifference to gay people at this moment in our history is a form of bigotry. It's passive bigotry, but no less destructive (imho).
Posted by Duncan Grant | Tue May 8, 2012, 08:48 PM (5 replies)

Vatican Declares Gay Marriage Holy War, Forms Worldwide Religions Coalition

Pope Benedict XVI

A top Vatican representative and Roman Catholic Archbishop is reaching out to form a coalition with other religions and has called on them to join the Vatican in a worldwide holy war against same-sex marriage, claiming that proliferation of equality “is not a good thing for society,” and will lead to “confusion.”

“I wonder if we shouldn’t ask for and look for more support among other Christian confessions and indeed, persons of other faiths,” Archbishop Antonio Mennini, who represents Pope Benedict XVI and the Vatican in Great Britain, said in an address to Catholic bishops from England and Wales.

“It seems to me that, concerning the institution of marriage, and indeed the sanctity of human life, we have much in common with the position of the Jewish community, the Chief Rabbi and many of the more significant representatives of Islam,” Mennini added.


Pink News reports that in the UK, “Archbishop Peter Smith said that while there has been no ‘formal’ contact with Jewish groups to form what he called a united front on the subject of marriage,‘we will work with anyone who agrees with us that to redefine marriage is not a good thing for society and will lead to confusion’.”

A "holy war" against gays. Let that sink in for a minute. It makes me wonder: What's next? We all know this kind of rhetoric leads only to violence and brutality against gay people. World gone mad.

Read all about it: Vatican Declares Gay Marriage Holy War, Forms Worldwide Religions Coalition
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