ONE magazine and Joseph Hansen

David G. Savage has written an article in the Los Angeles Times about the most important moment in the legal history of ONE magazine, which led the way in promoting the rights of gay people in the 1950s. ONE was in danger of being suppressed by the U.S. Post Office because that government agency had ruled that it was “obscene.” Two lower-courts upheld that opinion, but the case went to the Supreme Court, which reversed the findings of the lower court and declared that ONE was entitled to the same freedom of speech rights accorded to anyone in our nation.

Here’s a link to Mr. Savage’s very fine and illuminating article:

One of the beneficial consequences of the Supreme Court’s ruling a dozen years later was that it enabled Joseph Hansen to launch a ten-volume series of mystery novels about an out-of-the-closet detective, David Brandstetter. I recently had the pleasure of writing an article for the Los Angeles Review of Books on Joseph Hansen. Here’s the link:

An additional section of the article, which didn’t fit into their word limits, appeared in an earlier post (December 5) in my blog (

For more background on Joseph Hansen’s relationship with ONE magazine and its senior editor, Don Slater, I recommend C. Todd White’s article on Hansen, which was originally published a month before Hansen died in 2004 in the Orange County & Long Beach BLADE. It is available the on-line version of Tangent magazine.

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