City Paper is not for tourists
D.C. loves gays, this I know, for the Internet lists tell me so. “Best cities for gays” ranks among the most ubiquitous of Web listicycling (“best cities” for “millennials” and “singles” equally share in that pointless honor), and the District’s presence on such lists is all but guaranteed. And while our city boasts some genuinely fine features for gay people, the criteria used to justify D.C.’s place in these rankings leads me to believe that the less-bright intern on staff crafted a few of them. Most focus on federal Washington—the Advocate claims “this city has a whopping 17 gay elected officials,” blithely ignoring the fact that none of those officials actually represents this city. Republican Rep. Paul Ryan (Paul Ryan!) is actually credited as a gay-friendly-making force because he partakes in “well-known gay customs” (lifting weights). Elsewhere on the Internet, listmakers pay lip service to Dupont Circle, the Smithsonian, the High Heel Race, and “intern sex scandals” (gross). These lists are, for the most part, best ignored. But Jezebel scores a few points for publishing a list of best cities for lesbians—remember the ladies! said Abigail Adams, who, duh, lived in D.C.—that demonstrates a bit of reporting. It notes that the first-ever Dyke March took place here in 1993, and that 13.2 percent of high school girls in a 2007 D.C. Public School survey identified as lesbian, bisexual, or unsure. Jezebel also notes that “there are about 20 different D.C.s, and one of them is hella gay (though nobody says ‘hella’ there).” Accurate.