Donna Summer died a few days ago, and for me she was that Disco Queen everyone remembers, making hits like ‘She Works Hard For the Money’, and colorful-dance videos I remember watching on TV when I was a teenager. I don’t have much to say about her, she was part of the club culture of the 80s. Of course, when someone dies, it is often the time when you learn the most about the person behind the artist, and I was quite confused and surprised when I read in the LA Times that ultra conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh was already all over her dead body with the declaration:
‘It really is sad. We grew up with Donna Summer. I met Donna Summer one time and her husband on an airplane. She and her husband, after the flight took off, came up to me and introduced themselves, and we had a nice conversation. They were nice as they could be.’
Yuck! I would rather change my flight than share some oxygen with that dumbass. Then he continued with formulas like ‘she was one of us’, ‘she was a committed Christian’, ‘She was a right-winger’, and ‘She came to hate the smut on the radio. She was not a fan of rap music at all.’
Could it be true? Was he fast at recuperating her as soon as she was dead because she couldn’t speak up anymore, just because she was cordial to him during a brief encounter, or was she this right-winger conservative Christian he is describing?
What is true is that she was raised in a very Christian family, and allegedly made some anti-gay declarations in the mid 80s, about AIDS being a punishment from God for gay people’s immoral lifestyle. She denied having made such comment however, writing to the group ACT UP it was ‘a terrible misunderstanding’.
Ironically, because of her disco anthems, she became a gay icon, and did a lot of work for the Elton John AIDS foundation, so what does it mean? Whatever shouts Limbaugh on the radio, is irrelevant anyway.