Paul Corbit Brown (PCB) and John Brown (JB)
PCB: When did you first find your voice?
JB: Well I guess I found my literal voice in 1993. I was driving to work, scanning through stations and uh, I landed on Joy and Praise, one-oh-one something… Radio Sound [”Good morning our time is 10.02… ] The announcer was saying all these terrible untrue things about gay and lesbian people about how crude they are. And so pulled off to the side of the road and I went to a pay phone and I called him, I said, ”what are you thinking?If you are going to talk about gay and lesbian people, you should have a gay or lesbian person on the show to provide a balanced perspective at the very least”. [Radio station] ”Oh we’ve tried many times to get a gay or lesbian person on our show but…”, [JB] ”I’ll be on your show”, and he said, ”no you won’t”, he said, ”people say that but they won’t show up!”, and I said, ”you tell me the time and the place and I’ll be there”, and he said[Radio station] ”we’re going to have a live segment, if you want to be here we’ll put you on the show for 10 minutes”, so I said, ”okay”, so i hung up the phone, and of course I was shaking like a leaf and I went to the Hardees across the street and I got five dollars in quarters and I called everyone I knew and I said, ”you’ve got to call into this show because I’m petrified”. So at any rate, I went up there and we were in this little studio and there was just a bare light bulb hanging down from the ceiling. Radio Sound [And we welcome you today to the Thursday forum. With us in the studio, we have John Brown…] We went through the first 15 minutes and he said, ”I’m sure you won’t want to stay”, and I said, ”no, I’m perfectly comfortable, I’ll sit here until you are perfectly comfortable”. And we sat there for another two and a half hours and talked about these issues. I was just as comfortable as i could be because what I was there to say, I owned. Radio Sound [I don’t believe that I’m an abomination, I don’t believe I ever have been or ever will be… ] I just remember feeling so empowered, even though 99 percent of the callers who called into that show just talked about me as thought I was a dog. Radio Sound [The majority who are in the homosexual community have hundreds or even thousands of partners…] That didn’t matter. What mattered was that there was somebody in the audience that was listening, that needed to hear that it was okay and that was the only person I was worried about.
PCB: When I think about you, I think about all the things you’ve done in your life and the way that you walk your talk and I really admire that. Because I don’t know very many people in my life like you. And my relationship with you, has had one of the most profound effects on who I am as a person. There will never be words for it but thanks.
JB: I appreciate that, I really do.