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Mayor Michael Coleman, pictured here at last year's Gay Softball World Series, says he actively promotes Columbus as a gay-friendly market to the rest of the country. (Credit: Experience Columbus)

Why is Columbus so Gay?

How the capital city of a conservative state became the GLBT mecca of the Midwest

By Travis Hoewischer

Published June 1, 2011
The Columbus Pride Parade has grown from hundreds to more than 200,000 in 30 years. (Credit: Stonewall Columbus)

On a sunny weekend afternoon, dozens of men and women clad in a variety of fashions stream through Union Cafe, beginning their day at one of the most popular brunches in the city.

The intricately detailed walls and glowing crimson lamps overhead provide a warm backdrop for a relaxing day in the city.

This same tranquil space was also the setting of a raucous drag show the night before.

Such is the duality of life in Columbus, Ohio. Not San Francisco. Not New York. Columbus.

This melding of lifestyles is now the norm in one of the strongest and most vibrant gay communities in one of the most conservative states in the nation. Gay Travel named Columbus its Most Underrated Gay City and Gay Cities named Columbus as the Up-and-Coming Gay City of 2011.

The catalysts for our progressive identity as a city are as diverse as the citizens it serves; our economy, our urban landscape, our reputation as a business incubator, and even our overall quality of life have all been bolstered by a local culture whose attitude goes beyond basic tolerance. The chorus of support for our GLBT residents is increasingly encouraged – not simply tolerated – by a community working together to make Columbus a more progressive city as a whole.

The rise of the city’s gay population has been steady and strong for the past three decades, going from hidden and quiet to mobile and militant to open and accepted. This year, as we celebrate more than three decades of progress with the 30th anniversary of the Columbus Pride Festival, we examine just exactly how Columbus became one of the gayest cities in the Midwest.

The Initial March

Columbus didn’t become a bastion of acceptance overnight. In 1971, a decade before the first official Pride Parade was held in Columbus, gay rights activists had filed 18 applications to march on West Broad Street, all of which were subsequently denied. Two local judges at the time summarily dismissed the requests by deeming them as “aiding and abetting the solicitation of an act of perversion.” Throughout the 1970s, small groups of less than 300 marched down High Street to the Statehouse, but it wasn’t until Craig Covey, founder of the Stonewall Union, helped lead more than 3,000 marchers in commemoration of the infamous New York City Stonewall riots, that the public really took notice.

Karla Rothan, the current executive director of Stonewall Columbus, a community center and outreach organization that bears the Union’s name, beamed as she boasted about the estimated 210,000 people that will spill into the streets of downtown and Goodale Park this month for the 30th Pride Festival.

During the first Pride Parade in 1981, only hundreds participated, and they hid their identities by wearing bags over their heads.

“[Businesses] are paying to be in the parade now,” Rothan said. “They want to be seen, they want their logo out, they’re paying to sponsor it . . . Columbus just ‘gets’ it. That is to the credit of all those people that didn’t give up and didn’t stop and just kept going even when we were being harassed.”

A New Landscape

Columbus is set up perfectly to be a gay-friendly city, says Chad Frye, director of sales and marketing with Outlook Media, the city’s robust GLBT publication.

“There are all of these great neighborhoods that went into decline, where there were opportunities for gentrification, and they’re downtown-adjacent,” he said. “You don’t go into many cities today and find something like Victorian Village two minutes from the heart of the city.”

Or German Village. Immigrants may have founded the historical area, but it was the city’s native and transplanted gay population who reclaimed and revitalized the neighborhood in the ’80s and ’90s. The combination of less children and larger household incomes (the 2007 LGBT Census of Central Ohio shows GLBT incomes to be more than 10 percent above the city average in five of the six highest brackets), made them ideal urban pioneers.

Rothan recalls her partner applying for a home loan and being met with skepticism and surprise from the bankers.

“They said, ‘Where’s your husband? Where’s your man? We’re not used to having a woman get a loan for a property without a man.’ She replied, ‘Well, you better get ready because they’re all coming. It’s not just me.’ And they have. They’re all urban pioneers and they’ve been instrumental.”

The boom in German Village set the pace for Central Ohio. Terry Penrod, a gay realtor and national board member of the Human Rights Campaign, remembers the transformation of Columbus’ urban areas.

“In these communities where there was flight to the suburbs and urban decay, GLBT people who didn’t have children were more likely or able to go into older neighborhoods and redo these Victorian and German Village homes,” Penrod explained. “Once they were rebuilt, it fostered more people coming into the central city.”

Outlook co-publisher Michael Daniels gives further credit for the German Village revitalization efforts to the late Fred Holdridge and Howard Burns. Long known as the unofficial ‘mayors’ of German Village, the gay couple’s reputation as neighbors and community leaders gave them a high visibility beyond the gay community.

“I think what made a difference was that they got in, they dug into the neighborhood and they got their hands dirty and they started buying property and fixing it up – being gay was secondary,” Daniels said. “They became great ambassadors simply because their neighbors were like, ‘I’ve never met a gay couple before.’”

As more and more gay individuals purchased homes, the overall redevelopment of Italian Village, Harrison West, Clintonville and Grandview was fueled. This phenomenon not only helped boost the local housing market and the urban landscape, but also served as a physical catalyst for a more complete integration of the gay population over the entire city.

Now, the Short North, which shares borders with several of the city’s central villages, is a thriving arts area with a strong presence of GLBT business owners.

“While Columbus currently has and has had a series of ‘gay-borhoods,’ it’s never really had a [gay] ghetto,” Daniels explained. “I mean, there’s no Boys Town, there’s no Castro like in San Francisco. We have gay people who live all over everywhere and they’re out.”

Big Industry Buys In

The fact that more and more gay men and women have moved to Columbus in recent decades is owed to several factors, but the most significant factor has been the presence of the largest university in the country and its surrounding slew of liberal arts colleges.

Between its enrollment and its employment, The Ohio State University is responsible for importing thousands of men and women from around the globe, which has contributed greatly to the diverse culture of Columbus. Plus, statistics show that GLBT citizens are more likely to hold degrees than the average citizen. According to the 2007 LGBT Census, 33.1 percent of GLBT citizens have graduated college, versus 20.7 percent of the overall population of the Columbus Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), and 29.4 percent hold a postgraduate degree, compared to just 11.3 percent of the MSA.

In essence, a more educated city typically means a more gay-friendly one – especially a college town built on the scale of a university the size of OSU.

Perhaps no entities have been more influential on a large scale in both promoting and protecting the gay community than Columbus fashion mainstays like Limited Brands and Abercrombie & Fitch. These companies’ home offices in Central Ohio employ thousands, including many imports who have found in Columbus a social scene and arts culture comparable to those of other major cities – but in a much more affordable area.

These companies also instituted domestic partner benefits for their employees long before many of their coastal competitors (Limited Brands began offering them in 1999). Offering these extended benefits allowed the companies to lure talent to Ohio despite the fact that the Midwest isn’t exactly the center of the fashion world.

“I think the industry that’s here recognizes that we don’t have mountains and we don’t have beaches,” Daniels said. “But they’re recruiting people from the areas that do.”

According to the Corporate Equality Index, created by the Columbus chapter of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) to rate companies on equality and benefits for GLBT employees, Nationwide Insurance, Limited, Chase Bank, Abercrombie & Fitch and Cardinal Health all score at or near 100 percent equality. Nationwide also expanded their benefits package to include domestic partners in 1999 and OSU has also offered domestic partner benefits since 2004.

“You know, you could live in New York and it’s no big thing to be gay – but the company you’re working for might not have domestic partnership benefits,” Daniels said. “So I think that we’re lucky in that we’ve had a great many people in the private sector who’ve really signed on early to that whole diversity and inclusion piece and I think that shows in Columbus.”

City Pride

The fact that Columbus is more progressive than many of its neighboring metros, says Mayor Michael Coleman, goes “beyond just tolerance.”

“It’s the same question on immigration. Why are we such a huge city for immigration? Why do we have one of the largest Somali populations in the country? We have a culture all our own in this part of the country, and it’s a combination of the East Coast and the West Coast, right here in the central United States.”

Coleman, who, as an African American man, puts a strong emphasis on diversity, was the first Columbus mayor to attend Pride a few years ago.

“It was a big moment for me to stand up and say, ‘I welcome you.’ That’s just who I am. I come from a very diverse background myself. I wanted folks that were there that day to know that this city is a welcoming city, and if I am representing this city, I want them to know that we’re glad they’re here.”

It’s more than just personal – it’s professional. The city government’s backing of the GLBT community came full circle in November when they extended workers’ health benefits to domestic partners, a year after the Columbus Public School Board had done the same.

“I view it as an opportunity to market to the rest of the country,” Mayor Coleman said. “This is an asset of our city. The GLBT community is a community that is very creative, a community that brings a lot of opportunity with it. Jobs, economic viability . . . it all adds value to the community in a big way. When I go out recruiting businesses, I say this is one of the reasons why they should relocate their business to Columbus.”

Or why organizations should relocate their event. Last year, Columbus won the bid for the Gay Softball World Series, the largest GLBT sporting event in the world. Nearly 13,000 people from 20 states flooded into the city, bringing in more than $5 million over a weekend, according to Experience Columbus.

The organizers of the event were blown away by the support in Columbus, said Experience Columbus Media Relations Manager Scott Peacock.

“They were really surprised,” he said. “They couldn’t believe the level of support the community had given them.”

Experience Columbus has also hosted a dozen gay travel writers during trips to the city over the last year, including About.com’s Andrew Collins, who remarked that if Columbus was “on a bay and surrounded by hills, Tony Bennett would write a song about it.”

Collins used to visit Columbus in the mid-’90s, when he lived in New York City, and was immediately struck by how open gay life was here in comparison to what he had experienced in Cleveland, Indianapolis and Pittsburgh.

“Not only could you find a number of businesses owned or frequented by members of the community in several parts of town, but these businesses tended to have storefront windows and bright signs – they were conspicuous, in the way GLBT-popular businesses were conspicuous in other major cities. Unfortunately, at this time, gay bars and shops were often relegated to out-of-the-way neighborhoods or cloaked in windowless facades in many other large cities in the greater region.”

The local GLBT community isn’t just part of Columbus culture, it’s now a part of our city’s economic viability; the local gay presence is more ‘chamber of commerce’ than counter-culture.

“You better believe it’s good for business,” Mayor Coleman said. “Diversity is a real key to the city’s strength – economic strength, cultural strength, educational strength – it adds a lot of value to our community.”

“If you were to remove the gay population from the city of Columbus, it wouldn’t be as strong as it is – as good as it is.”

Using data from the U.S. Census, GayCensus and The Media Audit, Outlook Media calculates that GLBT consumer spending accounts for roughly $7.5 billion spent annually in our local economy.

“Columbus gets the fact that being an open and affirming city and attracting and retaining young talent – that happens to be GLBT talent – is important and it’s an economic value,” Stonewall’s Rothan said. “Who wants to cut out a percentage of their business right off the top?”

Allies Unite

As gay men and women have become woven into the city’s business, social and cultural fabric, the strength of the allied community – the gay and straight supporters of the GLBT cause – has increased, particularly in the power of their dollars.

The spending power of the gay community, coupled with supporters who won’t frequent anti-gay establishments or businesses where they feel their gay friends aren’t welcome, steers the tide significantly.

“At some point, equality just becomes good business,” Daniels said.

Doug Fordyce and Lisa McLymont were part of a large number of GLBT Columbusites who spurred social action on behalf of the growing movement in the early to mid-’90s. McLymont once graced the cover of Alive! in a passionate kiss with her girlfriend. Fordyce participated in several local boycotts of products of national companies whom the GLBT community had felt displayed or supported intolerance. Both feel that today, the level of activism that was the norm 15 years ago is no longer necessary.

“I mean, I stopped eating Wendy’s for about 10 years – we were trying to get people not to buy Hondas . . . now, [major corporations] are sponsoring Pride. It’s so healthy,” Fordyce said. “I talk to a lot of young people, and I tell them, ‘Back then, there were like five bars. You could see everyone in the community in one place.’ Now, we don’t need gay-specific places and bars. We’re everywhere. We’re a non-issue now.”

These days, ‘gay issues’ is an almost outdated term, says McLymont.

“Now, we’re talking more about positive aspects of diversity and what it means for Columbus – all its different walks of people.”

Who We Are

Thirty years after the days when local politicians still looked on gay culture as a public deviance, gay citizens are now so entrenched in our city that the political landscape is insulated from being anything but gay-friendly. As Daniels puts it, “The two things that matter in the world are money and votes.”

“The major movers and shakers in industry here have been on the forefront of these kinds of progressive issues; they’re the ones who have put in initiatives to make sure they are recognizing and promoting women, people of color and GLBT folks,” Daniels added. “These are the people who have the ears of the local politicos.”

The GLBT community has also directly gained a louder political voice in recent years. Mary Jo Hudson became the first openly gay citizen to occupy a political office in Columbus when she was appointed to Columbus City Council in 2004. Three years later, she made state history when she was named the Director of the Ohio Department of Insurance by then-governor Ted Strickland, making her the first openly gay person to serve in an Ohio cabinet position.

Hudson seconds the role that OSU and local business leaders have played in progress, but also says that Columbus’ diverse citizenry has shaped a more tempered religious sector.

“Columbus is home to many open and affirming church congregations and that’s greatly contributed to the accepting community that’s developed here over the past decade,” she said. “You don’t just find that anywhere.”

The city’s GLBT citizens are “totally and completely integrated into every part of our community,” said Mayor Coleman.

“It’s not segregated, it’s not something that is underground. It’s not over in this neighborhood,” he said. “It’s just who we are.”

Strength in Numbers

Lori Gum, a lesbian and local book publisher, returned to Columbus for the first time in 30 years after stints in New York and Los Angeles and was amazed by the cultural transformation of the city.

“I think Columbus is by far the most gay-friendly city I’ve ever been in,” she said. “I came back and found not only a thriving creative city, but a thriving, positive and diverse gay and allied community.”

And that community is expanding. Between the increased numbers that come through Stonewall’s doors and the massive growth of Pride festivities, it’s clear the GLBT population is increasing. According to a study by the William Institute at UCLA Law School, Columbus’ approximately 50,250 gay citizens outnumber the percentage of gay citizens in Chicago.

Gum noted that being gay in Columbus is not as polarizing as it is in other major cities.

“In all those other cities, it’s over-politicized on both sides,” she said.

A large part of what keeps the gay community thriving is the fact that for many, being gay isn’t an issue the way it used to be in Columbus or in other Midwestern cities.

“I think it’s interesting that the longer I’m in Columbus, the more that being gay becomes the least interesting thing about me,” Daniels said. “And I like that.”

Why is Columbus so Gay?

Members of the GLBT community respond

“It’s so open. I moved here from Pittsburgh; walking down the streets there, you’d get so many dirty looks.”

– Ethan Werstler

“Central location. Everyone that is corn-pone and country moves into the city.”

– Matthew Magani

“I would say Ohio State. It’s so diverse, and we all come here to be ourselves.”

– Adam Burris

“Because it’s so accessible and anywhere you go in the city you can be who you are. Plus, we have the third most gay people per capita in the country.”

– Joel Diaz

“Columbus is so gay for two reasons: first, it has the best dance graduate program in the nation, and second, the flagship Abercrombie and Fitch store is here.”

– Erik Abbott-Main

30 Years of Pride

June 2nd

5 to 7 p.m. – Pride Art Show at Spinelli’s Deli

8 p.m. – Pride Movie Night at Gateway Film Center

June 3rd

8 to 10 p.m. – Dance for Pride at Wallstreet

June 4th

11 a.m. to 7 p.m. – TransOhio Unity Picnic at Goodale Park

8 to 10 p.m. – Colors of Pride Art Show at 1st Community Bank

June 11th

9:30 a.m. ­– Jaeger Run for Pride 5k Walk/Run at Goodale Park

11 a.m. – Pride Poker Run at Club 20

June 13th

5 to 8 p.m. – Pride 30th Anniversary Party at Hubbard Grille

June 17th

3 to 11 p.m. – Goodale Park Celebration

June 18th

10 a.m. – Pride Parade Lineup

Noon – Downtown Step-off

10 a.m. to 8 p.m. – Goodale Park Celebration

June 19th

11 a.m. to 1 p.m. – Pride Brunch at the Columbus Athenaeum Bat n’ Rouge Softball at Dodge Park

Visit www.columbuspride.org for complete details.

Comments

Mike @ 06/02/2011 11:19 pm

Really? C-bus is kick-butt when it comes to the gay community. But one of the most conservative states? That is really where this articles losses it's cred. Ohio is more purple (blue and red) than many states to our south. Man, do some research and get you facts right.

Wayne L @ 06/03/2011 02:20 pm

I think he might have meant socially conservative - not politically.

Keith @ 06/04/2011 08:42 pm

Yes, there is a large gay population, but the downside is that it's so very homogeneous. Unless you're gaga for Lady Gaga, know your show tunes, and want a bar scene that revolves around outgaying everyone else: it's quantity, not quality here in Columbus.

rob @ 06/04/2011 10:16 pm

Having lived in San Francisco and other places. I don't see Columbus as being a large gay populated town. I see it is more afrocentric and white. Most of the gays you do see are sparse and in small circles. I see more lesbians than gay men. I only see a few gay men be open about themselves on pride day. That's sad. You have to be yourself everyday. If there's a problem,the police should help, but they are unable to, I believe in self defense.

hx of cbus @ 06/05/2011 02:40 pm

As usual, 614 provides another article full of historical inaccuracies, gross overstatements, and general disappointment. I think the closest thing to fact even mentioned in this article pertains the union, and to german village (a fact i am surely he swiped from the grossly innaccurate PBS series which forgot that many ppl simply never left german village and maintained their houses). additionally it seems to embrace the city's support via business, however let me tell you, if gays were all unemployed the city wouldn't be showing so much love, believe that one.

hx of cbus @ 06/05/2011 02:43 pm

oh, and i love the obligatory mayor coleman with "fill in the blank" (in this case a gay softball team). that guy would take a picture with the klan if he thought it would help his image.

Lonster @ 06/06/2011 08:26 am

I liked the article. I don't agree with every point but I think the timeline was accurate and it was well written. You haters should point out exactly what you think is inaccurate.

Joey @ 06/10/2011 08:08 am

Fewer children, not less children.

CK @ 06/11/2011 07:30 pm

This article is fantastic and made me choke up a bit, I'm not going to lie. I lived in Columbus for 5 years while I went to OSU. I come from a small city in the Deep South, not exactly a place of tolerance or acceptance. Moving to Columbus was like a breath of fresh air and I was finally comfortable to be myself. Having experienced that liberation, moving back to the South was and has been very difficult for me. This article reminded me of how much I love the city of Columbus and still consider it my home, even though I have been gone for over a year.

AHB @ 06/27/2011 11:27 pm

I think folks are being quite nit-picky with this article. The general message of the article is spot-on. I grew up in a smaller southwestern Ohio town, but have lived here for eight years and have lived in/ been extensively exposed to a variety of neighborhoods near the city (mainly Clintonville, Grandview, Bexley, the Short North, OSU Campus). One thing I've noticed is the level of tolerance in all of these areas, in spite of a variety of ages and affluence. Also one can be flamboyant or simply blend in and there is no issue either way. I personally like the Daniels' quote: “I think it’s interesting that the longer I’m in Columbus, the more that being gay becomes the least interesting thing about me. And I like that." In addition, the tolerance does not stop at just being toward the GLBT population, but other minority groups as well. This is not how it is in some other areas of Ohio, no matter how "purple" the state is, especially... more
I think folks are being quite nit-picky with this article. The general message of the article is spot-on. I grew up in a smaller southwestern Ohio town, but have lived here for eight years and have lived in/ been extensively exposed to a variety of neighborhoods near the city (mainly Clintonville, Grandview, Bexley, the Short North, OSU Campus). One thing I've noticed is the level of tolerance in all of these areas, in spite of a variety of ages and affluence. Also one can be flamboyant or simply blend in and there is no issue either way. I personally like the Daniels' quote: “I think it’s interesting that the longer I’m in Columbus, the more that being gay becomes the least interesting thing about me. And I like that." In addition, the tolerance does not stop at just being toward the GLBT population, but other minority groups as well. This is not how it is in some other areas of Ohio, no matter how "purple" the state is, especially in Southern Ohio. However I think Columbus stands as a leader, and other cities (albeit slow) are following. less

bothered @ 07/28/2011 10:30 am

I think that gays should be gay by themselves. I think using gays for profit and economic gain is wrong. I do not approve, nor do I like the thought of my son being raised in a gay city/ school. Mayor Coleman should not allow such natrocities to take place in our city/ towns. Besides gays are apron and not normal, if we wanted to sleep and live and insure sheep would mayor Coleman allow it? Probably if there was a gain for him. Not happy to have read this and will inform all I know.

HotNBothered @ 08/11/2011 12:58 am

Hey miss Bothered? If you don't like it, get out of our city because we are certainly not leaving and we are certainly not going back in the closet to make you feel better. Stop being a bigot and stop comparing homosexuality to beastiality. That is sick and only shows what's going on in your head, not ours. Clean up your filthy mind and get over it.

M.M. Sis Kaiser @ 01/05/2012 05:31 pm

Can't wait to visit Columbus!! Getting ready to relocate from So. Indiana. Sounds like Columbus has all the right things going on. Work and diverse community what more could you ask for!!

michigan @ 01/28/2012 08:53 pm

I just moved here from michigan a few months ago and I have to say the article is very spot on. I have never felt so okay just being myself anywhere in a city and that includes when I spent a lot of time in Chicago. The best part is the more gay people in the city the more that will move here so the acceptance will only continue!

Joe @ 03/16/2012 03:33 am

I'm a student at OSU and am active in the arts in the Short North. I find this article enlightening about the improvements that socio-economic aspects of gay culture have made on Columbus, however I think there are many negative aspects to "social competition" through homosexuality that are not mentioned in this article. For instance, I have witnessed many scenarios on campus and amoung social circles where relationships are severed due to homophobia. Simultaneously, I find this sort of "social competition" quite detrimental to the formation of friendly relationships between heterosexual and homosexual peers, personally witnessing several circumstances where homosexuals claim to "Own the Short North" or likewise, where heterosexuals covertly hate on homosexuals while outwardly showing acceptance. I mention these things to shed light on the social ambiguity that exists when an entire population of a large city is advertised as a... more
I'm a student at OSU and am active in the arts in the Short North. I find this article enlightening about the improvements that socio-economic aspects of gay culture have made on Columbus, however I think there are many negative aspects to "social competition" through homosexuality that are not mentioned in this article. For instance, I have witnessed many scenarios on campus and amoung social circles where relationships are severed due to homophobia. Simultaneously, I find this sort of "social competition" quite detrimental to the formation of friendly relationships between heterosexual and homosexual peers, personally witnessing several circumstances where homosexuals claim to "Own the Short North" or likewise, where heterosexuals covertly hate on homosexuals while outwardly showing acceptance. I mention these things to shed light on the social ambiguity that exists when an entire population of a large city is advertised as a "gay" city, which may cause more harm than good to everyone. From my experience, the gay atmosphere of Columbus may complicate social norms in a way that hinders the relational outcome two men can experience, due to the conscientiousness of "Is he gay or straight?" that may linger as a broken bridge in a friendship. I've seen these tensionate bridges break apart social groups as heterosexual men become "weary" of friends that seem gay. Don't get me wrong, this is a shameful event that is no fault to any demographic, but I hope that the city becomes more adaptive to the increased advertisement and "social competition" led by homosexuality, so that society can sustain its overall good. less

homohaha @ 05/18/2012 11:32 am

http://profiles.berecruited.com/athletes/1319243 looks pretty gay to me...

Bill @ 05/21/2012 01:23 am

I remember in 1993, I visited Columbus Ohio from my school U of MI, Ann Arbor and was blown away by the gay community there. Even back then everything was so open and accessible. Met a guy named Todd that provided the best night I've ever had with another guy. Never saw him again, but remember Columbus fondly. I've often thought I would love to move there. Glad to hear it's still so open.

TrooperLanningliesunderoath @ 07/01/2012 07:23 am

Your "GAY PRIDE" is a cancer that is growing beyond control. You CLOWNS are deviant perverts. Homosexuality is nothing more than Beastiality and homosexuals should be lined up side by side along pedophiles, rapists, and murderers. I'm an alcoholic and you worry about how I may harm someone if I were to say drive!! I'm stating that the GAY perverted society that you proclaim is so upstanding is part of the moral decay this country has been going through since the Hippies initiated their drug induced Utopia of LOVE!!! Fudge Packing and Carpet on Carpet is SICK !!!! You people definitely have something wrong upstairs!! A few fries short of a Happy Meal !! Oh that couldn't be correct You're so GAY You're each your own Happy Meal !! OK then lets say you perverts are short of being correct in the head!! Hey faggot from U of MI... I remember in 1994 a lesbian assaulted my daughter and guess who went to jail?? Not the pervert lesbian, I did.. I've... more
Your "GAY PRIDE" is a cancer that is growing beyond control. You CLOWNS are deviant perverts. Homosexuality is nothing more than Beastiality and homosexuals should be lined up side by side along pedophiles, rapists, and murderers. I'm an alcoholic and you worry about how I may harm someone if I were to say drive!! I'm stating that the GAY perverted society that you proclaim is so upstanding is part of the moral decay this country has been going through since the Hippies initiated their drug induced Utopia of LOVE!!! Fudge Packing and Carpet on Carpet is SICK !!!! You people definitely have something wrong upstairs!! A few fries short of a Happy Meal !! Oh that couldn't be correct You're so GAY You're each your own Happy Meal !! OK then lets say you perverts are short of being correct in the head!! Hey faggot from U of MI... I remember in 1994 a lesbian assaulted my daughter and guess who went to jail?? Not the pervert lesbian, I did.. I've been waiting for a long time to to see the homosexual community pay for their crimes against GOD and his word.. You deviants go ahead and enjoy your HAYDAY for now for the time is coming when YOU PERVERTS will pay!! And you can't do a thing to GOD and I'm LAUGHING at you clowns for the moment!! Hey heres an Idea.. Repent and accept Jesus as your savior and and he will forgive your for your SICKNESS and help you get RIGHT in the MIND !!! Hey you're SO GAY!!! Does that hurt? SO GAY!! less

Rod @ 09/22/2012 06:17 pm

I'm constantly doing research...which often involves gathering statistical data. Columbus has grown to well over 800,000 people...that's the cities population alone...and the metro area is around 2,000,000. When I first moved to Columbus, I was quite surprised at how well established the area had become in reference to tolerance and acceptance towards individuals of different nationalities and ethnic backgrounds...and especially surprised as to the gay friendly attitude of the entire Columbus community. I have lived in Atlanta, L.A., Cleveland...and visited Chicago, Seattle, Miami and many, many other cities. Overall, I wouldn't leave Columbus for any of those cities. I am not only gay, but a minority...and I feel very, very comfortable with the mufti-cultural atmosphere here in Columbus. If anyone visiting this site is considering moving to Columbus, I strongly recommend doing so. Columbus is also the fastest growing city in the mid-west and one of the fastest... more
I'm constantly doing research...which often involves gathering statistical data. Columbus has grown to well over 800,000 people...that's the cities population alone...and the metro area is around 2,000,000. When I first moved to Columbus, I was quite surprised at how well established the area had become in reference to tolerance and acceptance towards individuals of different nationalities and ethnic backgrounds...and especially surprised as to the gay friendly attitude of the entire Columbus community. I have lived in Atlanta, L.A., Cleveland...and visited Chicago, Seattle, Miami and many, many other cities. Overall, I wouldn't leave Columbus for any of those cities. I am not only gay, but a minority...and I feel very, very comfortable with the mufti-cultural atmosphere here in Columbus. If anyone visiting this site is considering moving to Columbus, I strongly recommend doing so. Columbus is also the fastest growing city in the mid-west and one of the fastest growing cities in the entire nation. I would also like to make a statement towards those individuals that have expressed themselves by using hateful statements and abusive words...take a good look at yourself...do you hate yourself so much that you have to find someone else to place "beneath you"? You need to pray and ask God to take hatred from your heart! less

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I was an undergrad at Northwestern and had a blast when I went down to Columbus for a conference at OSU about five years ago. I found it a lot more easy going and enjoyable than Boystown. I felt like I was in Hottie Heaven! Made friends with some fun boys @ OSU and made several road-trips down there before I graduated. Living in Cali now but still try to arrange Columbus stop-overs whenever I have to fly back east. FYI I find Columbus much more vital than the Castro, which so far as I can tell is a bunch of guys walking around wondering what happened to the 70s.

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