California? Artistic? Theater director? Homophobic fundy? Will wonders never cease?

The artistic director at California’s largest nonprofit musical theater company resigned Wednesday amid protests over his donation to a campaign to ban gay marriage in the state.

Scott Eckern stepped down from his job at the California Musical Theater in Sacramento after some gay activists called for a theater boycott.

He said he is leaving “after prayerful consideration to protect the organization and to help the healing in the local theatergoing and creative community.”

Comments

  1. #1 bigTom
    November 14, 2008

    While I consider the prop 8 backers to be meanspirited people (I was unkind to the campaigners that knocked on my door). My sympathies are with Scott. He should under no circumstances have been hounded out of his job. Politics is supposed to be the personal matter of the citizens, and should not be a condition of employment. Heck, I’ve spent most of my working life holding political views diametrically opposed to the people I work for. I’m sure glad they are bigger people than these artists.

  2. #2 Billy Taylor
    November 14, 2008

    bigTom,

    Your assertion is absolutely ridiculous. People should be responsible for the views that they hold. Prop 8 supporters have given money to support a hateful proposition that has negatively impacted the lives of gay and lesbian Californians. This impact is real. It is not some abstract ideal or an adjustment in the highway speed limit. Furthermore, Mr. Eckern works in an industry that is disproportionally gay. This would be like the director of a rape crisis center donating money to overturn laws against rape.

    Does this proposition impact your plans or your life? I doubt it. Maybe you can sit back and wax philosophically about the way things should be, but for me and my fellow gay Californians the bigotry and hate of this proposition are real. How can you ask us to sit by and let things carry on as normal?

  3. #3 Nick
    November 15, 2008

    It’s not like he was fired. He has as much a right to be an ignorant, Jesus loving bigot as these artists have to protest or boycott.

  4. #4 jayh
    November 15, 2008

    This bothers me greatly.

    It looks like witch hunting on the other side. Hounding people out of employment for a completely legal political opinion really is no better than the commie hunts of the past. This is no better than people being fired or forced to quit because they privately support gay rights.

    I strongly disagree with his political position, but that does matter here (and the ‘rape center’ example is no at all an accurate analogy)

  5. #5 brooks
    November 15, 2008

    the man was not fired for his political opinion/contribution; he was not “hounded out of his job” by anyone.

    but he did take a public, completely legal stand on an issue that directly impacts the people he works with/for; and these same people took their own perfectly legal actions by threatening boycott. i see nothing to lament here. isn’t this how it’s supposed to work in a free country?

    should people not be held responsible for public decisions that affect their own particular social group, whether for good or ill? what’s the problem? we should all have to be “nice” to each other — no “meanies” allowed? looks like he struck first on that one.

    he obviously followed his own moral convictions. it seems a bit ridiculous to grouse about those who disagree doing likewise.

  6. #6 Monica
    November 15, 2008

    bigTom,

    I would understand the point you’re trying to make easier if Eckern were in more of a neutral position, like a zookeeper, for instance. But, he is directly involved in the community he is trying to discriminate against. And as far as political view points, this isn’t a proposition to raise or lower taxes, or elect a certain official, it’s a proposition rooted in shameless bigotry, couched under a moral/religious rubric of lies and hate designed to deny a portion of our citizenry the same rights as others. Discrimination is wrong. Right?

    As a secular, humanist, atheist, feminist, I would not expect to be employed in a church or a pro-life org. since I have worked for and give money to Planned Parenthood on a regular basis.

    Scott supported Prop. 8 with $1000. That’s a lot of money. And the artists that protested his employment had every right to call attention to the situation.

    Stand up against Prop 8 today at 12:30. Find a protest near you:
    http://www.gaycities.com/events/355/

    Senator Feinstein says it succinctly:

  7. #7 Greg Laden
    November 15, 2008

    Actually, he took a position that was wrong, discriminatory, and obnoxious. That he can do this and still be protected by our laws is one of this nation’s strengths. But he should be ashamed of himself and it is good that he was shamed out of his job.

    Someday, there will be a school in Utah named after him.

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