Against homophobia (Women’s Voice 1978)

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AS WE went to press: Forty demonstrators invaded the Evening News building off London’s Fleet Street on the afternoon of 6 January.
They came to protest at the previous day’s inflammatory article about artificial insemination for gay women who want children. The article, they said, was an invitation to harassment.
Evening News reporter Joanna Patyna had posed for two months as a gay woman desperate to have a baby.
Her article, headlined ‘Doctor Strange Love’, had already sparked off a backlash of anti-lesbian outcry. Even as the women demonstrated a bunch of men gathered outside and shouted ‘Vermin!’ at them.
After an hour sitting in and singing and generally getting under the feet of bemused Evening News journalists in their large open-plan office, the women met the editor, Louis Kirby. A spokeswoman from Gay Sweatshop accused him of having broken with the NUJ code of practice in using an ‘undercover’ reporter to investigate something that is not illegal, and in flagrantly discriminating against lesbian women.
As a result of their direct action, the demonstrators were offered the right to reply in next week’s Evening News.

Women’s Voice reporter

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