Thanks to all our friends and the many businesses and organizations who filled the pages of the June Pride edition of WestView News. We’re all New Yorkers and this is how we roll: Pride-in-Quarantine!
—Kambiz Shekdar, President, Research Foundation to Cure AIDS & WestView News
—Bruce Poli, Pride-in-Quarantine Community Liaison
—Dusty Berke, Community Outreach
—George Capsis, Publisher
I don’t know WHAT we would do without our small but mighty @westviewnews. Now more than ever. They are keeping us informed, finding ways to support small businesses and making certain our seniors and most vulnerable neighbors have all the information they need to feel safe.
—Sarah Jessica Parker, Friend of WestView News
AIDS is the gift that keeps on giving to Big Pharma and the Insurance Industry. Truvada and similar prophylactic treatments are NOT a cure for HIV. Pharmaceutical companies profit irrationally from HIV-positive Americans who depend on the medications forever. As president, how would you finance a CURE and scale back the avarice of pharmaceutical companies.
—Larry Kramer, Founder, ACT-UP & Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), question as submitted by Larry and asked by James Roman during CNN’s Oct 2019 Presidential Townhall
Larry Kramer was a giant in our movement. He was the grandfather of AIDS activism. All of us learned from him even when we didn’t always agree. He was there at the founding of institutions such as GMHC and Housing Works. And, his cultural contributions, particularly Normal Heart, spoke eloquently to not only our minds but our hearts. Larry, you will be sorely missed.
—Michael Weinstein, Founder and President, AIDS Healthcare Foundation
My community endured centuries of the quarantining of our desires, And we survived. Love flickers even in darkness friendship is the antidote to isolation. We have lived through pandemics and survived.
—Jim Fouratt, LGBT Pioneer & WestView News Contributing Writer
We saw what happened when AIDS was politicized. We are watching COVID-19 be politicized. We must demand active democracy and be treated as citizens not consumers. The future is now.
—Penny Arcade, Writer, Theatre Maker, Cultural Critic
I remember how the AIDS epidemic fueled my own activism in my twenties and how it turbo-charged the movement for LGBTQ equality. As we celebrate Pride in the middle of another pandemic, I have to believe that the country that emerges from COVID-19 will be more fair, more just and more equitable than the country that went into the pandemic. If we use this crisis as an inflection point to demand greater justice and equality and transform our society, that might be a silver lining in the end.
—Anthony D. Romero, ACLU Executive Director
Karma is a bitch—now everyone understands how gays felt during AIDS outbreak.
—Jacqueline Taylor Basker, Contributing Writer WestView News
I am always filled with tremendous gratitude for a community that reached out and embraced our family during our darkest and most difficult time of grief with support for the Tyler Clementi Foundation from the very beginning. This year’s Pride Festivities will certainly look and feel very different as we live through some very challenging and difficult times of physical distancing, illness and death. But the strength, vibrancy, courage and love of the LGBTQ+ community that I have found cannot be silenced, it will shine through and be celebrated even in these most challenging moments.
—Jane Clementi, Co-founder & CEO Tyler Clementi Foundation
My first boss in the AIDS field told me early on: “THIS IS A MARATHON, NOT A SPRINT. USE YOUR RESOURCES ACCORDINGLY.
—Bruce Anderson, Former President, The LGBT Community Center
At certain times of the year, particularly during Pride, there is a strong, broad focus on the urgent need for a cure for AIDS. The Research Foundation to Cure AIDS is focused on that goal on a daily basis, year in, year out, and we ask you to join it in its efforts to reach that goal.
—Karen Hagberg, Board Chair, Research Foundation to Cure AIDS
The pandemic is unprecedented but it will pass, too. What will be remembered is the courage and creativity that we mustered in this time.
—Christian Kopfli, CEO, Chromocell Corporation & Board Member, Research Foundation to Cure AIDS
Join The Digital Quilt because we are Stronger Than Stigma, More Powerful Than AIDS.
—Zee Strong, Founder, The Digital Quilt, @zeestrong
Although the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our lives and livelihoods and pose tremendous challenges on all of us, New York City’s true character has only grown stronger. Why? Because we are confronting these challenges together. This LGBTQ Pride, although we are not together physically, we are coming together to celebrate our pride, determined to take on all challenges that come our way. I want to thank Westview for this special edition. To all New Yorkers, have a safe and happy Pride!
—Corey Johnson, NYC City Council Speaker
The Center has a long, rich history of helping people find community in both the most challenging and most celebratory of times. We’re offering all of our services virtually and are here to uplift our community 365 days a year, so that no one has to feel alone before, during or after Pride. It is our connection to each other and the affirmation of all of our diverse, vibrant identities that makes us so special, and that always deserves celebrating. Happy Pride!
—Glennda Testone, Executive Director, The LGBT Community Center
Thank you for voting Club Cumming best LGBTQ bar in NYC. I wish we could invite you all to join us during Pride. Let’s remain united in the virtual world and the pages of New York City’s WestView News!
—Alan Cumming, Actor & Founder, Club Cumming
Gay Pride has been a powerful source of strength in our community. From it and with it, the earliest brave persons reminded us that we are each precious and valuable.
—Jim McGreevey, Proud Gay American & 52nd Governor of NJ
—Mondo Guerra, Designer/ Activist
This solitude cannot compare to
of society’s mask decree of “normalcy”
This pandemic cannot
Take away the memories
The bittersweetness of June
Of a system already broken
Told you so
Over some Zoom disco ball
As we jump rope with the rainbow
—Karen Finley, Artist @the_yam_mam
During times of crisis you see the best in people. We have come together in unity and solidarity from all different walks of life to battle this invisible enemy. This is a war like any other and we have suffered casualties, but we will come out stronger on the other side of COVID-19. We are New York Strong!
—Alex Hellinger, Executive Director, Lenox Health Greenwich Village / Northwell Health
Though we won’t be marching through the Village or rallying at the Stonewall Inn this year, we must still celebrate and commemorate pride. This will be a test of our creativity as a community. But it’s a challenge we must meet.That is why this special LGBTQ Pride issue of WestView is so important. Somewhere a young LGBTQ person will find this issue and know that not only are they are not alone, but they are part of an incredible community.
—Erik Bottcher, Chief of Staff to City Council Speaker Corey Johnson & Candidate for City Council District 3
We’ve been thru horrors like AIDS, Guiliani, 9/11, Hurricane Sandy and now, COVID-19 and we will, as always, rebound and create, create, create as we always have. I can’t wait till I can raise a glass to my fellow gays, laugh, dance on Fire island, love, hug and smile without a mask.
—Daniel Nardicio, Owner, Club Cumming and Club Cumming Productions
NYC Pride is thankful to all those who are working to keep New York strong. We are especially thankful to the dedicated volunteers, members and staff who continue to work hard to keep the mission of our organization going.
—David A. Correa, Interim Executive Director, NYC Pride, Heritage of Pride
They don’t see me coming. I look like a good old boy. I walk like a good old boy. I talk like a good old boy. I pray like a good old boy. It helps me get their guard down, it gets me in the door. I hold that door open and I make sure they see me do it. White, Irish-American, Catholic, Cop and Queer as F*ck. The establishment will remember me. I infiltrated their system, and I will destroy it.
—Brian Downey, President, Gay Officers Action League (GOAL)
—Sherry Vine, Drag Legend