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In response to complaints before the episode even aired, CBS had flown the producers to San Francisco, where in an interview with local CBS affiliate KPIX the pair acknowledged that the material for the show was selected for its likelihood to be shocking.
Two months after Alfred's complaint to the NNC, CBS defended its people.
During one of the breaks I told him that I didn't feel good about it... In this report, we'll see how the gays of San Francisco are using the political process to further their own special interest, just like every other minority group before them.
I felt I had been twisted and manipulated." For someone of my generation, it sounds a bit preposterous. Gay power, gay politics, that's what this report is about.
The editor had inserted applause immediately after Feinstein apologized for her earlier Ladies' Home Journal comments, which Crile had described as Feinstein's "groveling to atone".
The applause had in fact come after her condemnation of anti-gay violence and a promise to appoint a gay or lesbian member of the police commission.
It's not a story about life-styles or the average gay experience.
What we'll see is the birth of a political movement and the troubling questions it raises for the eighties, not only for San Francisco, but for other cities throughout the country.
And if so, will this challenge to traditional values provoke far more hostility and controversy when it is put to the test elsewhere?
The documentary sparked outrage in the city and CBS was roundly criticized for its journalistic tactics.
The National News Council, a media watchdog organization, found that CBS had violated journalistic standards through misrepresentation purposely to reinforce stereotypes and through deceptive editing.
"Gay Power, Gay Politics" was used as a tool of the religious right to block or repeal anti-discrimination ordinances.
LGBT writers and theorists have continued to criticize the documentary.