How gay is the Abbey? That’s a question that’s been asked by gay men in Los Angeles for years. But now it’s being asked by The New York Times in an article examining the identity crisis of gay bars across the country.
While some gay men are accepting of women in gay bars, others interviewed by The Times are not. “They think of us as ‘fun’ and ‘free,’” said one young man. “It seems like they’re coming in to find their next accessory, like a new handbag.”
Citing something it calls “gay bar tourism,” the article notes that “the Abbey’s expansion into a restaurant and dance club, not to mention setting for a reality TV show, has drawn an increasingly diverse crowd, creating a windfall for the club but also some tension among its longtime patrons.”
That reality TV show, “What Happens at the Abbey,” has made the bar and restaurant an even more important stop for the TMZ tour bus.
The Times story, which can be read in full here, notes that an annual survey by the Damron says an average of 15 gay bars have closed every year since 2008.
Could assimilation mean elimination?