By Jeff Walsh
So, I attended a press screening of Milk tonight, the new Gus Van Sant movie about the first openly gay elected official who was assassinated in 1978 (sorry, can't say much more about that, my review is embargoed until the movie's release late next month).
But one thing in the movie completely yanked me out of the moment.
In the movie, Harvey Milk is meeting with some gay leaders about a mailer they want to send to every California resident. The mailer is about 1978's Proposition 6, also known as the Briggs Initiative, which would have made firing gay teachers (and any public school employees who supported gay rights) mandatory.
In the movie, Milk (played by Sean Penn) looks at the flier and is outraged that the mailer avoids using the word gay. It talks about rights and other high-minded things, but completely avoids the issue. The other people in the room say it is the right approach if they want to win.