Ready to push its agenda whenever possible, ABC spent more than 20 minutes interviewing gay activist Dustin Lance Black, who was in Philly for the dedication of a new historic LGBT marker. But when the conversation turned to national security, Black’s comments were predictably liberal, touching on “diversity” and “making one with Muslim Americans.”
The activist and gay CNN columnist LZ Granderson met at Philadelphia's oldest ice cream parlor, Franklin Fountain. As the two talked, Granderson's colleague asked Black to address a common question from viewers watching the live Facebook feed. "The relationship with your conversation here about the history of the LGBT community, uh, how does this fit into the national security debate that's currently going around in politics especially after what we saw unfortunately in Orlando recently?"
After stumbling a bit in his answer, Black responded: "We're at a real crossroads here right now, I think, in the country. And you can see it very clearly when you watch the Republican convention and now this convention so far. And that crossroads is: are we going to be a nation that is led by fear, and that positions of power are gained by dividing, or are we going to be a nation that finds opportunity and finds advantage in diversity. And that includes embracing, understanding and making one with Muslim Americans. You know, about not shutting people out who are different than us. Who we might not, who believe differently than us, who pray differently than us."
Yes, hugging it out will do the trick.
The two also discussed Black's upcoming ABC miniseries, When We Rise, which will detail the history of the gay rights movement from the 1969 Stonewall Riots to the present day. But the series will not focus solely on the LGBT movement; instead, it will weave in the stories of movers and shakers in the women's rights, black rights and peace movements as well.
As Black explained to Granderson, "Diversity and the success of diversity and equality is about the interconnectedness of social justice movements."
Black is an accomplished screenwriter, having risen to fame after winning an Oscar for his screenplay of Milk – a biopic of California's first gay public official, Harvey Milk.
Granderson, who will be inducted into the LGBTQ Journalists Hall of Fame in September, recorded a 2012 TED talk with over one million views entitled “The Myth of the Gay Agenda.” Methinks he doth protest too much.