Thursday, July 30, 2009


This Fox story is on the radar of Michelle Malkin, The Weekly Standard's Michael Goldfarb and the religious-right Alliance Defense Fund (as well as, naturally, Fox Nation), so I suspect it might set off the next right-wing hissyfit:

... The NEA was given $80 million of the government's $787 billion economic stimulus bill to spread around to needy artists nationwide....

But some of the NEA's grants are spicing up more than the economy. A few of their more risque choices have some taxpayer advocates hot under the collar, including a $50,000 infusion for the Frameline film house, which recently screened Thundercrack, "the world's only underground kinky art porno horror film, complete with four men, three women and a gorilla."

... the director of Frameline, the gay and lesbian film house, told in an e-mail that their $50,000 grant was not to support any program in particular.

"The grant is not intended for a specific program; it's to be used for the preservation of jobs at our media arts nonprofit organization over the next year during the economic downturn," wrote K.C. Price...

I've never seen Thundercrack!, but it gets compared to the work of John Waters, who used to put real sex in his movies but wasn't making porn.

Maybe money's tight now, but in the Bush years -- even as the administration was running up huge deficits -- Frameline got quite a few grants. There was one in 2002 that supported "a film series sponsored by Modern Masters of Lesbian and Gay Cinema on filmmakers who influenced homosexual media in the past 25 years." There was a grant in 2004 for a lecture series on gay film, and another one in 2005 for a curated film series called Open Screen. For 2006, there was a grant to support a conference called Persistent Vision:

I don't recall complaints about any of that Bush-era money. But a Democrat is in the White House and Republicans have no actual ideas right now, so they're in all-attack-dog, all-the-time mode. This was inevitable, I suppose.

Frameline did receive NEA grants in 1988 (yes, when Saint Ronnie was president!), 1989, 1990, and 1991 (yes, under Poppy Bush, too) -- but its grant was held up for a while in 1992 (the last time Republicans were this unpopular) after complaints from Jesse Helms and the Reverend Donald Wildmon. The grant eventually went through, as did others in the Clinton years and, as noted, in the W years.

But Republicans are fresh out of ideas. So it's time to attack gay NEA grants again.


MORE: I don't want to give the impression that Frameline is the only recipient that has right-wingers' knickers in a twist. Here's another:

Stimulus money help fund the weekly production of "Perverts Put Out" at San Francisco's CounterPULSE, whose "long-running pansexual performance series" invites guests to "join your fellow pervs for some explicit, twisted fun."

Shocking! ... Er, except for the fact that NEA money was also given to CounterPULSE by the Bush administration in 2007, and Perverts Put Out was on offer then, too. I suspect I could do this all day.

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