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A persistent disturber of the peace

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Malcolm Boyd died on 2/27--

His writing in the 60s and 70s persistently irritated me, but he prayed with his feet in Alabama and was courageous in coming out when he did. His life and death merit some notice.


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It is an odd feeling to reach the point where I have to think really hard to remember all the influences that helped shape my path. Malcolm Boyd was one of those, almost in spite of himself. He was one of those “Mr. Show Business” preachers, always ready to step to the center of the stage and make a joyful noise, not at all seemly for a man of the cloth, often the object of ridicule or at least gentle disapproval. People loved to disparage him.

Yet his message was always bold, and timely, and on target. He was solidly in support of equal rights, civil rights, and human rights. As bi_janus points out he was not afraid to walk the walk, in spite of the flamboyance of his talk. When he came out as gay it was something of a sensation yet for many of us it was reassuring to have someone with that much flash choose us. His early support for those afflicted with AIDS lent a powerful voice to that struggle to be recognized and understood, and his contributions offered solace to many men torn by their times and circumstances. Perhaps forgotten now, Malcolm Boyd made a difference then.

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