I arrived at the Atlanta INtown office this morning and learned that Southern Voice and David magazine, the city’s long-time gay and lesbian publications, had been closed over the weekend. It was a punch to the gut. I was raised on Southern Voice and David and was featured in their pages many times as they kindly helped promote my fledgling career as a poet and novelist. Laura Douglas-Brown, Dyana Bagby, Ryan Lee and the staff — both past and present — of both publications have been vital voices not only in the LGBT community, but to journalism in Atlanta.
Southern Voice’s coverage of the mayoral race and the police raid on the Atlanta Eagle bar — to name just two issues — was top notch, in depth and presented a balanced view that other dailies and weeklies could only hope to attain. David was the go-to-guide for entertainment, clubbing and laughing at columnists like Topher Payne and Michael Alvear. That both of these publications disappeared in one day in Atlanta is heartbreaking. And it’s an even greater loss because Window Media — which owns both Southern Voice and David — also shuttered other LGBT publications today, including The Washington Blade, which had been providing community coverage for 40 years.
My hope is that the talented and brilliant staff of Southern Voice and David will regroup and start anew. A thriving metropolis like Atlanta needs an LGBT publication of record. We at Atlanta INtown show our solidarity with our friends at SoVo and David today.