CharlieHebdo

The quote reads, “100 lashes if you don’t die of laughter.”

In Paris, 12 cartoonists and the editor of the French magazine Charlie Hebdo were murdered in their office this week. Newspapers around the world are publishing this cartoon in solidarity with those killed and to stand for the principle of freedom of the press.

As a writer for an LGBT newspaper and host of an LGBT radio talk show, I know we face hatred. Most of the hate comes in the form of emails. Sometimes it’s a phone call. We usually dismiss the threats as empty rants from ignorant bigots.

At KNON, we used to receive death threats every week during Lambda Weekly. Sometime in the early 90s, one of those threats came in and I responded, “Thank you for calling KNON. We recently installed caller ID and my next call will be to the police.”

The threats mostly stopped.

Sometimes when someone calls the station now, I tell them, “There are 63 other stations in Dallas. They’re all more conservative than we are. Listen to one of them.” And hang up.

If someone complains about something I’ve written, I usually respond with a flip, “Interesting that you’re reading the gay paper.”

After the murders in Paris, I’ll take the calls and email more seriously now.