Table of Contents
Also on this website:
Toby Johnson's books:
GAY SPIRITUALITY: The Role of Gay Identity in the Transformation of Human Consciousness
GAY PERSPECTIVE: Things Our Homosexuality Tells Us about the Nature of God and the Universe
THE FOURTH QUILL, a
novel about attitudinal healing and the problem of evil
CHARMED LIVES: Spinning Straw into Gold: Reclaiming Our Queer Spirituality Through Story
Books on Gay Spirituality:
Toby's review of Samuel Avery's The
Dimensional Structure of
Funny Coincidence: "Aliens Settle in San Francisco"
The Gay Spirituality Summit in May 2004 and the "Statement of Spirituality"
You're Not A Wave
What is Enlightenment?
What is reincarnation?
How many lifetimes in an ego?
Emptiness & Religious Ideas
Experiencing experiencing experiencing
Going into the Light
Meditations for a Funeral
The way to get to heaven
Buddha's father was right
Advice to Travelers to India & Nepal
The Danda Nata & goddess Kalika
Nate Berkus is a bodhisattva
John Boswell was Immanuel Kant
The Two Loves
Be Done on Earth by Howard E. Cook
Pay Me What I'm Worth by Souldancer
The Way Out by Christopher L Nutter
The Gay Disciple by John Henson
Art That Dares by Kittredge Cherry
Coming Out, Coming Home by Kennth A. Burr
Extinguishing the Light by B. Alan Bourgeois
Over Coffee: A conversation For Gay Partnership & Conservative Faith by D.a. Thompson
Dark Knowledge by Kenneth Low
Janet Planet by Eleanor Lerman
The Kairos by Paul E. Hartman
Wrestling with Jesus by D.K.Maylor
Kali Rising by Rudolph Ballentine
The Missing Myth by Gilles Herrada
The Secret of the Second Coming by Howard E. Cook
The Scar Letters: A Novel by Richard Alther
The Future is Queer by Labonte & Schimel
Missing Mary by Charlene Spretnak
Gay Spirituality 101 by Joe Perez
Cut Hand: A Nineteeth Century Love Story on the American Frontier by Mark Wildyr
Radiomen by Eleanor Lerman
Nights at Rizzoli by Felice Picano
The Key to Unlocking the Closet Door by Chelsea Griffo
The Door of the Heart by Diana Finfrock Farrar
Occam’s Razor by David Duncan
Grace and Demion by Mel White
Gay Men and The New Way Forward by Raymond L. Rigoglioso
The Dimensional Stucture of Consciousness by Samuel Avery
The Manly Pursuit of Desire and Love by Perry Brass
The D.A.F.O.D.I.L. Alliance was the organization of lesbian and gay mental health workers at The Tenderloin Clinic in downtown San Francisco that lobbied to get the Gay Mental Health Task Force established.
The acronym stood for Dykes and Faggots Organized to Defeat Institutionalized Liberalism. We obviously loved the reference to the flower, daffodil. We were a group of slightly wiser and older flower children, a daffodil alliance indeed.
Gay mental health workers complained that we were hired for a "gay-specific clinic" but then were given so many chronic psychiatric cases we didn't have time to see the gay clients. So "institutionalized liberalism" meant the institution would claim to be gay-sensitive, but in fact didn't give a hoot about gay people's real issues.
(Ah, where's any kind of liberalism today?)
Part of the story of the DAFODIL Alliance was that its first action, on June 24, 1977, just before the Gay Pride March of that year, was a march/demonstration that started at the Tenderloin Mental Health Clinic in the old YMCA building on Golden Gate Street off Market and marched to City Hall and then to the offices of the community mental health services that funded our agency. We got a Lesbian Brass Marching Band to lead the demonstration.
It attracted so much attention that a
HUGE crowd formed and followed us down the street. When this throng
arrived at the mental health offices the openly gay but professionally
discreet Director, Dr. Bill Goldman,
climbed out and stood on a balcony outside his office window and agreed
to give us everything we wanted.
(Which was $60,000 for our clinic and a job in the Health Dept for a black lesbian mother named Pat Norman who was then working as a paraprofessional at the City's mental health unit called The Center for Special Problems--who has since become a major S.F. politician and social servant.** )
Dr. Goldman also set up a Gay Mental Task Force to study and make recommendations for implementation of gay sensitive policies in the City's mental health services. The Task Force recommendations resulted in the adoption of a Gay Client's Bill of Rights, guaranteeing access to gay or gay-sensitive health care providers--a notion that, subsequently, had major effects in AIDS-related services.
For another two years, DAFODIL "oversaw" the implementation of the gay mental health task force recommendations. The irony of it all was that after that first demonstration, DAFODIL literally fell apart (we were all so P.C. we couldn't stand each other), but four of us kept meeting and sending official sounding letters. So by giving the illusion we were some sort of large and powerful group, we influenced city government significantly, but there were really only four people: two dykes and two faggots.
Mervyn Silverman who later became director of AmFAR and buddies with Liz Taylor replaced Goldman as supervisor of community mental health soon after his predecessor gave us all our demands. So it was mainly Silverman we pulled the wool over the eyes of.
But with good
benefits all around!
The "backstory" --from Toby Johnson's perspective--of how The Tenderloin Clinic and San Francisco's gays-for-gays policy evolved out of early gay liberation activism.Phern comments about D.A.F.O.D.I.L., "But the most important point was made through Dafodil, and that is that out gay therapists, heretofore, only held their positions as individuals... what we demanded was gay-identified mental health services... and of course we won. Dafodil was like a gay therapists union in those days."
members of D.A.F.O.D.I.L. were: Ricki Boden, Phern Hunt, JoAnn Lovejoy,
Carol Hastie, Mavis DeWees, myself (Toby Johnson), Rachel Wahba, Karin
Wandrei, Becky Sharp, Reuven Closter,
Nancy Feinstein, Karen Cagan, Maggie Hochfelder, Marge, Loon, Taj
Tellalian, Russ Zellers, Larry Goldfarb, Sue Saperstein, Joanie Becker,
Jeff Moulton. (back)
Among the original staff at The Tenderloin Clinic were: Connie Arburua, R.N., Michael Lipp, MSW, Jerry Polon MSW, (eventual long term director of Tenderloin Clinic), David Brandt, PhD (not gay) and Fred Phillips, MD., Carol Hastie, MSW.
link to Tenderloin Times, a publication of Hospitality House, story about Dafodil and the gay counseling program at the Tenderloin Clinic. The article quotes Wanda Addams and Scott Toups, both counselors in the program at the clinic.
** In 2017, the movie of Cleve Jones's adventures in Gay Lib San Francisco and the AIDS crisis appeared on TV. It was titled WHEN WE RISE. Pat Norman is a character in the movie--she was played by Whoopi Goldberg. (Whoopi for Pat!) Here's a page about intersections in my life with the events in the movie.
(back to Pat Norman above)
Toby Johnson, PhD is author of eight books: three non-fiction books that apply the wisdom of his teacher and "wise old man," Joseph Campbell to modern-day social and religious problems, three gay genre novels that dramatize spiritual issues at the heart of gay identity, and two books on gay men's spiritualities and the mystical experience of homosexuality. In addition to the novels featured elsewhere in this web site, Johnson is author of IN SEARCH OF GOD IN THE SEXUAL UNDERWORLD and THE MYTH OF THE GREAT SECRET (Revised edition): AN APPRECIATION OF JOSEPH CAMPBELL.
Johnson's Lammy Award winning book
SPIRITUALITY: The Role of Gay Identity in the Transformation of
Human Consciousness was published in 2000. His Lammy-nominated
PERSPECTIVE: Things Our Homosexuality Tells Us about the Nature
of God and the Universe was published by Alyson in 2003. Both books are
available now from Lethe
back to top