I completely agree with the article “Gay ‘brain drain'” by Sharon Gittleman in last week’s issue. This was a great article that spoke true and direct to the current climate in Michigan. I have been an active member of the Metro-Detroit GLBTQ community for over 10 years. For reasons like the territorial politics of the various agencies to the lack of community leaders “getting along” to a general lack of direction and collaboration within the GLBTQ community, I have never felt the feeling of “community” here.
I agree also that Detroit is lacking an area like Boystown (Chicago) or WeHo (California). Ferndale, which is often labeled as a “gay town,” is merely a town where a large number of GLBTQ people reside. There is Affirmations Lesbian and Gay Community Center, which is a great outlet, but a lot people either do not know about Affirmations or do not feel as though the center offers what they are looking for in social/support services.
The current political environment, economy, and an overall lack of “cool” things to do are things that are going to keep more and more people (GLBTQ, straight, young, not-so young, and myself included) leaving the state, looking for better places to reside.