Old Friends and New

Simon LeVay visited The Book Works in Del Mar, CA last week to discuss his new book, Gay, Straight, and The Reason Why (Oxford University Press). It was an emotional event, for it was during his tenure at the nearby Salk Institute in 1991 that Dr. LeVay published the first ever study showing a difference in the brains of gay versus nongay men in an region associated with sexual behavior. Pictured with Dr. LeVay (seated) are Book Works staff members together with scientists who, though now scattered throughout San Diego research institutions, were all colleagues with Dr. LeVay at the Salk when he carried out his landmark work.

The evening also featured representation by and for the GLTB community. Dr. LeVay was introduced by Latham Staples, founder of Empowering Spirits (http://www.empoweringspirits.org/), a gay civil rights organization based in San Diego. Staples discussed the ongoing tragedies of teen suicides across the country, and introduced a classroom documentary designed to encourage tolerance and combat anti-gay bullying. The film is free of charge for all teachers (http://www.tolerance.org/bullied) and is produced by the Southern Poverty Law Center.