2.) The art being discussed here wasn't confiscated or covered, it was just moved to a less casual-passer-by area of Jiffy Lube. Given the number of children at the event, this isn't an unreasonable suggestion. If you don't like it, get rid of the kids (something that I'd be happy to advocate). As long as there are children present, we will experience these issues with law enforcement.
As one of the agitators of the Jiffy Lube incident and one of the embarrassed queers that had to listen to the Jeffrey (the rabid little guy with the bullhorn and the unhealed chip on his shoulder) I take profound exception with this statement. The whole idea of the "...given the children" statement is bullshit. Disgusting, stereotypical, reprehensible fucking bullshit. It also happens the be the very SAME basis upon which Ron Skinner decided to be the arbiter of art at Burning Man that year. Namely, he used the VERY SAME fucking RATIONAL which, if you stop to think about it, defaults back to the idea that queers = predators = child molesters. There was similarly 'offensive' art on the playa but Skinner target Jiffy Lube specifically.
The other point that I take exception to is that by placing it on back of the Jiffy Lube tent and therefore out of the way what was again being reinforced was that "I'm cool with you being gay as long as you don't do it in public."
Yeah, well, fuck that too. JD (one of the main proprietors fo Jiffy Lube) had his arms twisted behind his back because Skinner was so vociferous in his objections to the sign. And though I personally don't believe that JD did the best thing - especially given the specific targeting of queers by Ron Skinner - I do understand the duress and pressure he was put under and the decision was his and not mine. I stand by JD's decision.
Hindsight being what it is I re-read the posts from the various newspapers and realize that Larry's response was one that had little time to prepare for. He was visibly agitated because this all came out of left field and pretty much blindsided him right in the middle of the event. But in fairness to him I still hold the belief that what he said that day would have been somewhat different if he'd had the opportunity to sit with us prior to Jeffrey agitating with his bullhorn to find out what the issues behind the action were ACTUALLY about. Unfortunately, those issues were completely drowned out by the nut job with the bullhorn. FWI, I was the person who upon finding out the situation with the sign approached JD and asked him for permission to drive around Black Rock City with the Jiffy Lube sign in the back of my Toyota pickup. JD agreed. I told him it was my intention to take Ron Skinner - not Larry, and not Burning Man to the mat as far as challenging Skinner and his belief that the sign in question constitued pornography/lewdness/etc. In short, I went looking to be arrested, was willing to go to jail, and willing to sue yet another law enforcement group for abrogation of Constitutional liberties as a group of us had successfully done in early 1990 to the tune of $250,000.
As was suggested/predicted by a group of us after the incident, Ron Skinner's actions did indeed represent the nose of the camel poking too far into the tent as he continues to assert his right to determine community standards in so far as art and artistic merit of several of the participants who've come to the event in the years after the Jiffy Lube incident. I'll comment no further on that here.
I'll also state categorically that the call-in diatribe to KQED by Jeffery was an exercise in selective memory as far as his conveyence of the events that transpired that day and that truth was the real victim as far as his 'recall' of Larry's comments. I was there. I remember. The suggestion that Larry Harvey is homophobic in any way or in any measure is a cruel slander that I as as an out queer will not go left unchallenged.
Ooops. back to work...