“Author Claims Norman Rockwell Was Closeted Homosexual,” William Bigelow writes at Big Government:

American Mirror: The Life and Art of Norman Rockwell, a new biography of the great American artist and iconic figure Norman Rockwell, accuses him of being a closeted homosexual, basing the spurious claim on the fact that Rockwell would stop young boys on the street or at recess and ask if they would pose for his illustrations. The author, Deborah Solomon, ignores the fact that Rockwell, who was married three times and had three children with his second wife, who died unexpectedly in 1959, stated in his autobiography that after he asked the boy, they would go together to ask the child’s mother for permission.

Rockwell’s family is furious about the biography for its sloppiness and misuse of sources, saying there are a multitude of inaccuracies as well as a “phantom theory” about his sexuality. The family released a statement saying there were at least 96 factual errors in the book, and that Solomon made “highly selective” use of Rockwell’s autobiography “My Adventures as an Illustrator.”

Solomon would not reply to inquiries.

Orson Welles once referred to Citizen’s Kane’s “Rosebud” leitmotif as “dollar-book Freud.” Isn’t another example of dollar-book Freud the attempt by authors to cobble together enough “facts” to reach the conclusion that that every historical figure was gay? Gay activist Larry Kramer appears to be a one-man cottage industry in this department, according to this 2009 UPI article:

Harold Holzer, who has written 35 books about Lincoln and the Civil War, said playwright and AIDS activist Larry Kramer admitted to him he fabricated his much-publicized claims that a diary and letters discovered in an old Lincoln home confirmed a homosexual relationship with his roommate, Joshua Speed, the New York Post reported Thursday.

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The Post said Kramer, who also has claimed President George Washington, Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton, and explorers Meriwether Lewis and William Clark were gay, couldn’t be reached for comment.

As a Free Republic post from 2002 noted, claiming famous historic figures as gay icons “associates homosexuals with positive images (symbols) just like advertisers use celebrity endorsements”:

Famous historical figures are considered especially useful to us for two reasons: first, they are invariably dead as a doornail, hence in no position to deny the truth and sue for libel. Second, and more serious, the virtues and accomplishments that make these historic gay figures admirable cannot be gain said or dismissed by the public, since high school history textbooks have already set them in incontrovertible cement.

But then, history has become much more pliable in years since; that trend actually started in the early 1990s, just as postmodernism, political correctness, and black armband history were all gathering steam in academia, which quickly spilled over to other cultural institutions, including the Smithsonian.