Windy City Media Group Frontpage News


home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01



Raconteuse Fran Lebowitz talks Trump, value of privacy
by Sari Staver

This article shared 4986 times since Wed Feb 21, 2018
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

New Yorkers understand Donald Trump, according to Fran Lebowitz.

"He's just a cheap, trashy hustler," said Lebowitz, a 67-year-old lesbian raconteur/actress who makes a living making dour observations about life, typically in onstage conversations in theaters around the world.

While many people seem shocked by Trump's constant stream of ignorant tweets, "everyone I know in New York already knew what he is an incredibly dumb guy.

"None of us ever thought he was either a billionaire or a developer. That's no secret here in New York," she added, where Clinton beat him by a margin of nine to one.

"And now … for the first time, Trump is exactly what he says he is—president of the United States," said Lebowitz.

The Bay Area Reporter called Lebowitz at her New York City apartment to get a preview of her upcoming appearance at the Berkeley Repetory Theatre. While most celebrity onstage interviews are scripted and audience questions screened, Lebowitz wants to encourage spontaneity.

"I love the onstage experience," she says, "but especially the audience questions. They can be so nutty and so much fun," she said.

The author of two best-selling books—a collection of essays titled Metropolitan Life followed by a second collection, Social Studies—Lebowitz first gained her large LGBT following as a writer for Andy Warhol's Interview magazine in the 1960s.

One thing that became obvious during the interview was that Lebowitz doesn't really like talking about herself.

"I value my privacy," she said, declining to discuss any romantic relationships, past or present. "I won't even allow a journalist or photographer to come to my apartment," she said.

"I've never wanted to make a career" about being gay, she added.

The politics of sexual identity "are narrowing," said Lebowitz. "I grew up in a small town and all I ever wanted was to have a bigger life," she said.

Lebowitz has also declined any sort of "life" online, she said, adding, "I have absolutely no idea what is being said about me," having never owned either a computer or a smartphone.

"I've never liked machinery," she said. "When people were using typewriters, I wrote longhand. People ask me why. I say I also don't own a plane or have a personal chef but, of course, there's the fact that I can't afford those, either."

Lebowitz said gets her news from the Sunday New York Times, which she reads cover to cover ( except for the sports section ), typically finishing by Wednesday each week. "If something else important happens, I assume people will tell me about it," she said dryly.

How does Lebowitz envision the rest of Trump's term in office?

"I'm kind of out of the prediction business since I was so wrong about the election," she said, having repeatedly announced Trump "didn't have a chance in hell" of beating Hillary Clinton.

"I don't think he'll be impeached," said Lebowitz, noting that the "craven Republicans" currently in power in Congress are not interested in removing him.

"It's more likely that he will resign" rather than face any consequences from the current investigations, she said. "Trump has lead the most charmed life of anyone in this country and I don't see that changing," she said.

"He's not at all interested in politics," she continued. "His focus has always been on money. He will do whatever it takes to make money."

And Trump's base isn't likely to desert him, said Lebowitz, because his bigotry was "100 percent of the appeal" to them, adding that people who are old enough to remember George Wallace or KKK rallies "will remember the similarities," she said.

During the run up to the election, Lebowitz said she "never believed" the reasons Trump's supporters gave for liking the Republican candidate.

"I admit that I don't personally know any West Virginia coal miners who lost their jobs, but anyone who thinks Trump will bring those jobs back has got to be delusional. It's not going to be 1950 again," she said.

The "real reason" most of these people supported Trump, she theorized, "was that they found his bigotry appealing. They knew the jobs were not coming back."

Is she worried about Trump dismantling democratic institutions? "I'm more worried about whether we are even going to be around," she said, noting the increasingly hostile relationship with North Korea.

As to her own future, Lebowitz predicted she will continue her decades-long tradition of doing stage conversations. "People are always asking me when I'm going to write another book. Writing is my central problem," she said. "If I didn't have writer's block, I'd be writing right now. I've been offered the opportunity to write plays but if I can't write a book, how can I write a play?

"Some people think talking and writing are, in some way, connected. They are completely separate talents and are unrelated."

Lastly, Lebowitz said she doesn't even have to prepare for her speaking engagements: "I just show up. For me, talking is effortless—like having a trick thumb."

This article shared 4986 times since Wed Feb 21, 2018
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


Gay News

Chicago Ald. Cappleman attacked 2021-09-19
- On the night of Sept. 18, Chicago Ald. James Cappleman was attacked in the Uptown area of the city, The Chicago Tribune reported. Cappleman, in charge of the 46th Ward, is one of five members of ...

Gay News

WORLD Germany's compensation, Lyra McKee, LGBTQ Afghans, tennis player 2021-09-19
- Germany has compensated almost 250 people who were prosecuted or investigated under a Nazi-era law criminalizing homosexuality, according to euronews. By September, 317 people had applied for compensation for their ...

Gay News

Patrick J. Kennedy to receive award from Trilogy at virtual gala 2021-09-18
- Chicago-based Trilogy Behavioral Healthcare will present its Partner in Recovery Award to The Kennedy Forum founder, mental-health advocate and former Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy as a part of its virtual 50th-anniversary gala on Thursday, Oct. 21. ...

Gay News

Polis marriage marks first same-sex wedding of sitting governor 2021-09-17
- On Sept. 15, Colorado Democratic Gov. Jared Polis wed longtime partner Marlon Reis—marking the first same-sex marriage of a sitting U.S. governor, NPR reported. Polis keeps making history. In 2018, Polis became the first openly gay ...

Gay News

Hastert settles sexual-abuse lawsuit 2021-09-16
- Days before a trial was set to begin, former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert reached a tentative settlement in a hush-money lawsuit filed by a man whose decades-old sexual-abuse allegations led to the politician's downfall six ...

Gay News

Now, only five of Chicago's 50 aldermen reject automatic pay raises 2021-09-16
- Forty-five out of 50 Chicago aldermen have opted to accept a 5.5% pay increase in 2022 that will push the highest paid among them to an annual salary of more than $130,000, according to The Chicago Tribune. ...

Gay News

Chicago alderman apologizes for 'offensive words' 2021-09-15
- Jim Gardiner, alderman of Chicago's 45th Ward, apologized during the Sept. 14 Chicago City Council meeting for his "offensive words" but said he "never acted on any of those rants" in which he appeared to call ...

Gay News

Gov. Pritzker signs transformative energy legislation for Illinois 2021-09-15
--From a press release - CHICAGO — Delivering on principles previously laid out, Governor JB Pritzker signed landmark legislation into law that puts the state on a path toward 100% clean energy, invests in training a diverse workforce for the jobs ...

Gay News

Gavin Newsom wins Calif. recall election 2021-09-15
- On Sept. 14, California Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom defeated a GOP-backed effort to remove him from office, media outlets reported. Speaking from Sacramento, Newsom thanked Californians for rejecting the recall effort, according to He also ...

Gay News

Catholic theologians urge protections for LGBTQ+ people 2021-09-14
- More than 750 of the nation's leading Catholic theologians, church leaders, scholars, educators and writers have joined New Ways Ministry in voicing support for nondiscrimination protections for LGBTQ people, according to a New Ways press release. ...

Gay News

'Homophile' organization New Gay Liberation Front launches 2021-09-13
- The New Gay Liberation Front—which described itself in a press release as a "homophile organization"—has launched. "Homophile" is a term that was used by some gay and lesbian groups in the 1950s. According to the University ...

Gay News

NATIONAL Teachers, GLAAD talks HRC, 9/11 items, Dr. Rachel Levine 2021-09-12
- In North Carolina, a former teacher won a lawsuit against Charlotte Catholic High School and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Charlotte after he lost his job following an announcement on Facebook that he planned to marry ...

Gay News

WORLD False report, Indian activist dies, fashion exhibit, LGBT Awards 2021-09-12
- In Spain, a man who claimed eight hooded men carved an anti-gay slur on his butt using a knife in a horrific hate crime later said the act was consensual, according to According to police ...

Gay News

Lightfoot attends 'Parade of Hearts' public-art installation series launch 2021-09-09
--From a press release - CHICAGO (September 8, 2021) — The Love, Unity & Values (LUV) Institute, a Chicago non-profit, unveiled a new series of neighborhood art installations Sept. 8 to launch the Parade of Hearts, an initiative to commemorate the ...

Gay News

HRC fires its president, Alphonso David 2021-09-07
- On Sept. 6, the national LGBTQ+ organization the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) fired its president, Alphonso David, for advising now-former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) during his sexual-harassment scandal ...


Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.








About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.