Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Teen Idols

Once again I was, for no good reason, looking up random information on Wikipedia yesterday. This time it was 1950s-60s teen idols – Bobby Rydell, Frankie Avalon, and Fabian. As is standard with teen idols in all eras, they had short stays at the top, though they are still going strong (or, at least, still going) on the nostalgia circuit.

No way would you get me to part with any of my money to see these guys, but if you feel differently – go for it.

But the interesting thing I read was about Fabian:
He was drafted, but rejected, for military service during the Vietnam War. According to USMC Lt. Col. Arthur Eppley, Fabian was declared 4F (unfit for service) after presenting a doctor's note stating that induction into the Army could cause him to develop homosexual tendencies. 
To be honest, this thing seems a bit lightly sourced. How does the author of the book cited know this about a draft board decision?

But, if true, the question it raises for me is that I thought one had to actually be gay to get a 4F back then. Would a doctor saying that you might become gay work just as well? Heck, I knew a bunch of guys who would have tried that dodge.
Sarge, I'm only eighteen, I got a ruptured spleen
And I always carry a purse
I got eyes like a bat, and my feet are flat, and my asthma's getting worse
Yes, think of my career, my sweetheart dear, and my poor old invalid aunt
Besides, I ain't no fool, I'm a-goin' to school
And I'm working in a defense plant
-- The Draft Dodger Rag, Phil Ochs, 1965

No comments:

Post a Comment