So yesterday this Tweet comes through from the political site Talking Points Memo:
Harvey Milk stamp will be first to feature an openly gay elected official (PHOTO): http://t.co/APQUoFRjOI
— Talking Points Memo (@TPM) April 2, 2014
Clicking through to the story, there’s a great big picture of what is purportedly the new Harvey Milk stamp; the U.S. Postal Service said last October that it would honor the slain San Francisco supervisor and gay civil rights leader, but did not release a design or say when the stamp would be available. (“I’m sure the right-wing homophobes will probably warn their kids not to lick it,” San Francisco Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, a former Milk associate, said at the time.)
Only thing — the post cites a philatelist (if we can say that word) website, Linns.com, as the source of the news. Some LGBT websites also put up posts about the stamp, but they all cite the same Linns item, which also states, “The stamp will be issued on Harvey Milk Day, May 22, in a location or locations yet to be determined. Both Washington, D.C., and San Francisco are potential first-day cities.” (Update: MSNBC, too.)
But a USPS spokesperson told us over email, “We have nothing to announce at this time. Please check back … within a week or two.”
OK. We asked Jay Bigalke, author of the post and online editor at Linns: What gives? How’d he get hold of the stamp?
“I wish I could share with you extra details, but everything we know up (till) today is in the story. … That’s the Harvey Milk stamp image, but I can’t reveal my source.”
Apparently there’s a postage stamp Deep Throat out there, leaking like a sieve.
I asked Bigalke if the stamp would be popular among collectors.
“Stamp collectors typically collect stamps to fill spaces in their albums, so, yes, it is expected that they will buy this stamp,” he said. “So far as the general public is concerned, this stamp might not be as popular as, for example, the Harry Potter stamp, because Harry Potter is better known and is a hugely popular topic. But who knows? We won’t know until the stamp has been on sale for a while and we’ve seen sales figures.”
Honoring Milk on a stamp was the subject of a Change.org petition circulated online almost three years ago. The petition accumulated 10,000 signatures in two months.