What to say, what to think? As a publisher and fellow writer I am at times juggling a variety of points of views which given the proper framework can elicit a healthy discussion as to what anything means, what it is that informs us and why we feel the way we do about certain issues.
That said, Christopher London who has his own blog christopherlondonblog.com penned a piece titled: ‘The Dawn of the dead: The Fashionable Elite Gay Media ignore Occupy Wall street,’ which caught my attention and after some careful thought decided to publish in our journal here at scallywagandvagabond in light of the recent drama with respect to the situation of Occupy Wall Street.
What though particularly caught my attention with respect to Mr London’s article was the following view as best enunciated by Mr London himself:
The Fashionable Elite Gay Social Media (Vogue, Avenue, Paper Magazine et. al etc) are ignoring the movement and the brutality being committed against citizens by the New York Paramilitary Department working under Der Fuhrer Bloomberg.
But perhaps the real eye opener comes here:
The grand re-opening of Studio 54 garners more attention on their blogs and in their Paper Magazine postings than the human revolution going on around them or the excessive force being used against petite young citizens who look like they have been on a Ramen Noodle diet for too long, but nevertheless require several muscular white shirt gorillas from the NYPD to wrestle them to the ground. Did you even notice real journalists like Naomi Wolf being arrested? Bitch, I am glad you got a nice photo of yourself on your iPhone with Jenna Jameson or some has been from yester year but you seriously need to wake the fuck up.
Of course who is one journalist/blogger/writer to critique what another journalist/blogger chooses to give attention to. Each journal after all has its editorial ambit and its advertisers to please (not that has personally stopped me
yet) which in the overall picture affects what a publisher, editor or blogger will choose to publish or write about. Of course it is particularly beguiling why a high profile journal or journalist like Peter Davis, who has come to represent the pinnacle of glam media (along with other author/publishers like Vogue’s Hamish Bowles, Anna Wintour, The Observer’s Nate Freeman, etc) and that of gay basis media has chosen not to give any gravity to the prevailing issues at hand.
Is that because journalists like Mr Davis and his publications don’t want to risk offending the 1%, who are currently under attack, that they cater to? Is that because bringing up tenuous themes other than self serving themes of gay empowerment (which I have brought up myself many times) doesn’t go down too well or is that just because certain journals don’t feel certain topics fall within their jurisdiction? But then again that raises the question, what ought a journalist who enjoys a high profile be canvassing given the captive audience they have?
As I have offered it is not my job or any other writer’s job to make a mockery as to why one writer chooses to write about what they choose to or not to write about, but of course with someone like Mr Davis at the helm of Avenue mag, he better get used to being watched for what that journal does get or doesn’t get to say and not take a personal affront. As I can personally assure any reader out there, I am constantly held to account by many journals (see Mr Davis holding me to account with my consideration of an episode involving aspiring socialite Melissa Berkelhammer as well as by my own readers, as well often being sourced for my points of views.
Of course having the following thrown at you can be a bit hard to swallow, but nevertheless once you are a public figure (which Mr Davis certainly is) one better get acclimated with dissent, or just uncomfortable questions being posed from time to time.
Which brings me to the following, courtesy of Mr London:
Posing next to porn stars and celebs from yester- year hardly makes you a journalist. It is only evidence that what remains of the Fourth Estate may insure the demise of our republic. Go do another line and get back to me. Peter Davis and your fashionably elite ilk…you are dead and now utterly irrelevant.
The article itself didn’t go down too well with Mr Davis (I suspected it wouldn’t, and I knew by publishing it would to some degree risk offending him, but at the same time, I like to think of myself as a writer and a facilitator of provocative social commentary, so on that basis, despite my deep respect and personal fondness for Mr Davis I decided that for the sake of dialogue to publish the story. Which elicited a rather heated discussion in the comment box (Montgomery Frazer- you surely kept me entertained and thinking!) and of course it also elicited the following reaction from Mr Davis as well in my email box.
Let’s read on together shall we?
Just read your article on Scallywag. Not sure why you targeted me as I don’t think you truly understand my feelings about OWS – I have been down to Zuccotti Park there 3 times to support their efforts. I have used Twitter to help get the message out. Paper is not a political magazine. It is a pop culture magazine.
You should have contacted me and I would have been happy to talk before you labeled me anti-OWS or a poser. I volunteer for the Coalition for the Homeless (we just raised a lot of money). I am also working on a photo project about the homeless to raise more money and I go on “feeding van” trips to hand out food to homeless people (there are more homeless people in NYC than ever before – a shocking, staggering statistic). The homeless are the less than 99% in NYC and often ignored.
You are free to knock me down – but you should contact people first as a real journalist would before you just assume that they don’t care about issues whether it be OWS or gay marriage or anything else. I do far more than pose for “the elite party photographers” and spend as many nights at home as I can.
Again, argument is engaging and helpful, but a journalist should let their subjects have a chance to speak for themselves before cutting them to shreds and just printing insults.
Hmm, which then elicited the following reaction from me:
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Let me digest your thoughts, but do understand Chris London wrote this, and I decided to publish it to facilitate a discussion. What Chris has to say isn’t what I necessarily endorse, and I don’t think it’s a personal indictment on your character, but more of an attempt to promote a discussion as our collective roles as commentators.
I would like to give it some more thought as I do consider you a friend and a professional. I have cc’d Chris on this as well. But yes reaching out prior to the publishing of this piece to get your thoughts would have been very beneficial in this discussion.
Sent from my iPhone
And of course it also elicited this reaction from Mr London, the author of the piece:
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Peter: I wrote this piece. Christopher Koulouris chose to publish it. Respectfully, you are not the only one called out here. This is not a personal vendetta of any kind. I read you and take your photograph often. We have had conversations.. If you were a simpleton or insignificant poseur than I would simply ignore you. But the symbolism is glaring in your multitude of postings all over Facebook and everywhere re: gay bullying and gay marriage but yet total silence on the issue of police brutality and the use of excessive force against Occupy Wall Street protesters.
There is no requirement in our society that you support the poor, the homeless or express concern for the downtrodden. I am not god so I cannot tell you how you should support your fellow man or not. Nor do I do philanthropic audits of individual citizens. My focus is truly on the rather narrow issue of the ignoring of the violation of civil rights of citizens where you and many like you are and have been rather notoriously SILENT.
You should take this call to arms not as an insult but as a basis for greater introspection given your social media and society platform (Facebook, Avenue, Paper Magazine) which is significant. My rather outspoken support of OWS will very much likely cause me to be ridiculed in many of the same circles that we cover. And maybe you have far more to lose by expressing disagreement with how the Mayor and the Police are cracking down on citizens. You should be less than insulted. If I thought you were irrelevant I would not have mentioned you by name specifically.
You were ranked as one of the more important New Yorkers and Gay Mediaites in this metropolis. Sorry but that is a badge you wear. And in my estimation, even recognizing your support of a number of charities, the evidence is troubling. And you will excuse my circumspection about the involvement of a number of socialites in Coalition for the Homeless. The organization was far more wide open until recent years where Press has been rather controlled so certain people who are friendly with a certain publicist can get press for appearing to exhibit great concern. This is in effect an indictment of the hypocritical in that class who choose to be less than democratic in what is ironically supposed to be a rather democratic endeavor. Hence why I no longer cover the socialite events associated with The Coalition for the Homeless.
This is my perspective. I criticized your veritable silence not what is in your head or what you truly feel about the downtrodden.
Peace be with you. You are free to call me at any time.