How the Glitch stole Easter

Alright, gays, what did you do this weekend to undermine a major Christian holiday?

Me, I joined my family at a Mandarin Buffet, where I ate way too much black pepper steak and garlic broccoli while trying to get my finicky niece to eat some chicken. My gourmet friends will be appalled but hey, I got off lucky — one friend of mine had to accompany his niece to the ‘Hannah Montana’ movie!

Clearly, the Dreaded Gay Agenda is failing.

But not according to Focus on the Family founder James Dobson, who announced this weekend that the religious Right have lost. Yes, lost. Now it’s free abortions and sodomy for everyone! Hell, even Barack Obama introduced his family’s new gay puppy at the White House:

While I’d love to take credit for this giant homo victory, the truth is that religious conservatives have no one to blame but themselves. If you’re full of hate long enough, people will eventually find you hateful. Even Christian home-schooling advocate Ray Moore says that the big Christian groups “were more concerned with fund-raising and political power
than they were with our children’s welfare.” Amen, brother. Maybe now Dobson and his ilk will stop shrieking about gay marriage and take their own kids to the damn Hannah Montana movie!

But is that it? Are we done? Can Xtra and EGALE and GLAAD and the Advocate and every other group under the rainbow finally turn in their pink triangle badges and call it a day? Sadly no, because, dammit, there’s always something. For instance…

We may have evolved beyond book-burning Nazis but this weekend, we discovered book-hiding conglomerates! Despite its lesbianic name, Amazon has been discovered quietly relabeling gay and lesbian books as “adult” (ie. porn) and removing their sales rankings so they won’t show up as high in search results and, as a consequence, won’t sell as well. Books by classic authors like James Baldwin, Dorothy Allison and Gore Vidal have been affected.

Word got out on Twitter (under the great code name ‘amazonfail’) and calls for a boycott were issued as Amazon desperately claimed it’s all merely “a glitch,” a glitch that only seems to affect certain books (Playboy and Adolph Hitler are still thankfully safe for children!) and a glitch that seems to have been in effect since February!


But fortunately, there’s always a way to protest, perhaps even a fun one: while we could certainly flood the Amazon customer service lines at 800-201-7575, using the website’s tagging system against it is a nifty trick too. Having our lives sequestered away as “too adult” or “too controversial” or just “too icky” is an old, old trick — one that a far, far better writer than me wrote eloquently about in a book that’s now harder to find:

A former editor of the late, lamented fab magazine, Scott has been writing for Xtra since 2007 on a variety of topics in news pieces, interviews, blogs, reviews and humour pieces. He lives on the Danforth with his boyfriend of 12 years, a manic Jack Russell Terrier, a well-stocked mini-bar and a shelf of toy Daleks.

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