Joe Jervis (right), the writer behind the award-winning queer blog Joe.My.God., won’t be helping Utah’s LGBT residents celebrate diversity and pride in Salt Lake City later this month as planned — due to his being disinvited. As Tony Adams reports on his blog Queer New York, Jervis had originally been announced to serve as co-grand marshal of Utah Pride along with out soccer player David Testo, but the blogger’s name was conspicuously absent from official press materials.
Adams investigated the slight by phoning Valerie Larabee, Executive Director of Utah Pride Center, who explained the amount of power the Mormon church exerts in the LGBT community (!) and essentially placed full blame on a young male board member who considers Jervis an insult to the Latter-Days folks and insisted the blogger’s invitation be revoked out of concern for his Mormon friends.
Larabee revealed to Adams there may have been a more personal, vindictive reason for rescinding the offer to Jervis that had little to do with the blogger himself. Adams writes:
At this point Larabee spoke candidly about what may have been the real reason for the dumping of Jervis. She said that the young man who fought to disinvite Jervis resents her leadership and that his anti-Jervis action was really nothing more than a personal attack aimed at her more than Jervis. Because petty power struggles are not uncommon in Pride organizations, I found Larabee’s explanation plausible and I was impressed with her anguish over the disinvitation of a man who is well respected by her and by others within her organization. Larabee says she has apologized to Jervis and offered to bring him to Utah at her own expense to atone for what has happened. She said that Jervis has been extremely gracious in his acceptance of the disinvitation and that she admires the fact that he has avoided commenting about it on his blog.
Adams has revised his blog posting to reflect the following correction requested by Larabee: “The young man who is against the invitation of Jervis is not himself a Mormon. He claims concern for his Mormon friends.” Queerty has updated its story accordingly.