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Sexual Labels Are Old Hat

August 21, 1986

I, for one, think it's time for The Times to stop labeling people's sexual orientation in news stories about West Hollywood politics (Times, Aug. 14 and 17). Yes, it was newsworthy when West Hollywood became a city and elected homosexuals to the City Council. But that's yesterday's news. The fact that certain community leaders and candidates for office happen to be homosexual is no longer news. West Hollywood residents care much, much more about land use, development and parking issues than people's private sexual lives.

A lot of West Hollywood residents are Jews. If you constantly labeled people "acknowledged Jew" or "self-avowed Jew," that would be as obnoxious as your present practice of identifying homosexuals.

Also, the homosexuals, like the Jews, do not form a single power base which is monolithic in its interests. The fact is that the majority of homosexuals in West Hollywood are renters, like the majority of the rest of the community. So it's impossible to have a City Council race which pits renters against gays as your articles state. Gays, like everyone else, will vote their economic interests and not their sexuality in West Hollywood city races because homosexuals are an accepted reality and no longer worthy of comment here.

Why can't we read the news without your constantly harping on sexuality? Some people happen to be homosexual; some happen to be Jews. Some both. So what? From now on, only the relevant facts, please!

MARSHAL A. PHILIPS

Vice President

West Hollywood Democratic Club

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