It's time once again for the egregious link bait known as The Advocate's list of the 'Gayest Cities in America.' Last year, they crowned Minneapolis the winner. And this year, who might it be? Salt Lake City! Yes, using an asinine formula that involves awarding points for the number of WNBA teams, International Mr. Leather semi-finalists, gay softball teams, elected gay officials, and Imperial Court chapters, they make the provocative and pointless gesture of ranking Mormon-and-gay-hating Salt Lake City, Little Rock, Knoxville, and Grand Rapids f**king Michigan higher than San Francisco on this list. Where do we rank in 2012? EIGHTEENTH!
We call bullshit. Again.
For those of you who don't keep up with the gay magazine world, The Advocate was once a relevant, even edgy, politically minded publication that launched with the dawn of the gay rights movement, chronicled the AIDS crisis, and ultimately became an irrelevant rag covering stories on gay cruises and hand lotions. It now isn't even its own magazine, but comes as a 20-page insert in sister publication OUT. But they're online! And they got a ton of traffic last year not to mention some heavy mockery on The Daily Show for claiming that Minneapolis was the gayest city in America, and San Francisco was NUMBER ELEVEN. Yes, even the straight folks at The Daily Show understood how ridiculous this was, given our Folsom Street Fair, our gay cheerleaders, our bear scene, our dozens of bars, our being at the forefront of the gay rights and marriage equality movements, and so on.
And now we're a mere runner-up at 18th, and even Washington D.C. is higher on the list, which, we repeat, is bullshit. Anyone who is gay who has ever been to any one of these damn cities knows that San Francisco is way gayer than most of them combined. Except maybe Atlanta. There is a drag queen on every stoop in that town.
The formula, by the way, privileges smaller cities with any gay population at all, because it takes their stupid point total and divides it by the population. Thus, New York and L.A. don't even show up on this list. How does that make the smaller cities gayer? It doesn't. It makes them lonelier. And once again The Advocate has brought the respectability of LGBT journalism down another notch.