This day in LGBT History – June 24-July 2

Kelly and I are heading out for a week+ cruise to Alaska. In not wanting you to miss any day of LGT history, especially during LGBT Pride week, I’ve added the historical content for the next nine days here. I hope you’ll  Happy reading, happy history, and HAPPY PRIDE!!!


This Day in LGBT History – June 25

 

1844 – Thomas Cowperthwait Eakins (July 25, 1844 – June 25, 1916) was an American realist painter, photographer, sculptor, and fine arts educator who died on this day. He is widely acknowledged to be one of the most important artists in American art history. No less important in Eakins’ life was his work as a teacher. As an instructor he was a highly influential presence in American art. The difficulties which beset him as an artist seeking to paint the portrait and figure realistically were paralleled and even amplified in his career as an educator, where behavioral and sexual scandals truncated his success and damaged his reputation. Eakins was a controversial figure whose work received little by way of official recognition during his lifetime. Since his death, he has been celebrated by American art historians as “the strongest, most profound realist in nineteenth- and early-twentieth-century American art.” The nature of Eakins sexuality and its impact on his art is a matter of intense scholarly debate. Strong circumstantial evidence points to Eakins having been accused of homosexuality during his lifetime, and there is little doubt that he was attracted to men,[75] as evidenced in his photography, and three major paintings where male buttocks are a focal point: The Gross ClinicWilliam Rush, and The Swimming Hole. The latter, in which Eakins appears, is increasingly seen as sensuous and autobiographical. In the latter years of his life, Eakins’ constant companion was the handsome sculptor Samuel Murray.

1962 – U.S. Supreme Court rules in MANual v. Day that photos of nude and semi-nude men designed to appeal to homosexuals are not obscene and may be sent through the U.S. mail.

1963 – Openly gay pop star George Michael is born on this day in 1963. Georgios Kyriacos Panayiotou (June, 25 1963 – December 25, 2016), known professionally as George Michael, was an English singer, songwriter, record producer, and philanthropist who rose to fame as a member of the music duo Wham! He was best known for his work in the 1980s and 1990s, including hit singles such as “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go” and “Last Christmas“, and albums such as Faith (1987) and Listen Without Prejudice Vol. 1 (1990). Since 2012, Michael had been in a relationship with Fadi Fawaz, an Australian celebrity hairstylist and a freelance photographer of Lebanese descent based in London. It was Fawaz who found Michael’s body on Christmas morning 2016.

1970 – The Vatican issues a statement reaffirming its stance that homosexual unions are a “moral aberration that cannot be approved by human conscience.”

1972 – William Johnson becomes the first openly gay person to be ordained in a major church, the United Church of Christ, in the U.S.

1972 – Jeanne Manford (December 4, 1920 – January 8, 2013) marches with her son Morty in the Christopher Street Liberation Day Parade in New York City. She carries as sign that reads: Parents of Gays: Unite in Support of Our Children. She goes on to found PFLAG, Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays for which she was awarded the 2012 Presidential Citizens Medal.

1977, Toronto – The newly formed Coalition to Stop Anita Bryant organizes demonstration in Toronto. It is the first of several coalitions and public actions across Canada reacting to Bryant’s anti-gay crusade. 

1978 – First Rainbow flag, designed by Gilbert Baker (June 2, 1951 – March 31, 2017) flies at the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day parade. Baker’s flag became widely associated with rights causes, a symbol of gay pride that has become ubiquitous in the decades since its debut. California state senator Scott Wiener said Baker “helped define the modern LGBT movement”. In 2015, the Museum of Modern Art ranked the rainbow flag as an internationally recognized symbol as important as the recycling symbol. Baker died at home in his sleep on March 31, 2017 at age 65, in New York City. The New York City medical examiner’s office determined cause of death was hypertensive and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. Upon Baker’s death, California state senator Scott Wiener said Baker “helped define the modern LGBT movement”. In Baker’s memory, NewFest and NYC Pride partnered with a design team to create ‘Gilbert’, a rainbow font inspired by the Rainbow Flag. As well, on June 2, 2017, the 66th anniversary of his birth, Google released a Google Doodle honoring Baker.

1979 – The opening of the movie Cruising in New York is greeted by protests due to the nature of the depiction of “gay life” within the film. Cruising is an American crime thriller film written and directed by William Friedkin, and starring Al PacinoPaul Sorvino and Karen Allen. It is loosely based on the novel of the same name, by The New York Times reporter Gerald Walker, about a serial killer targeting gay men, in particular those associated with the leather scene. The title is a play on words with a dual meaning, as “cruising” can describe police officers on patrol and also cruising for sex.

1982 – Michel Foucault (October 15, 1926 – June 25, 1984) dies of AIDS in Paris. He was a French philosopherhistorian of ideassocial theorist, and literary critic. Foucault’s theories primarily addressed the relationship between power and knowledge, and how they are used as a form of social control through societal institutions. Though often cited as a post-structuralist and postmodernist, Foucault rejected these labels, preferring to present his thought as a critical history of modernity. His thought has influenced academics, especially those working in sociology, cultural studiesliterary theory and critical theory. Activist groups have also found his theories compelling. Foucault died in Paris of neurological problems compounded by HIV/AIDS; he became the first public figure in France to die from the disease; his partner Daniel Defert founded the AIDES charity in his memory.

1985 – It is revealed that actor Rock Hudson is battling AIDS. Born Roy Harold Scherer, Jr. (November 17, 1925 – October 2, 1985), he was an American actor, generally known for his turns as a leading man during the 1950s and 1960s. Viewed as a prominent ‘heartthrob’ of the Hollywood Golden Age, he achieved stardom with roles in films such as Magnificent Obsession (1954), All That Heaven Allows (1955) and Giant (1956), and found continued success with a string of romantic comedies co-starring Doris Day in Pillow Talk (1959), Lover Come Back (1961) and Send Me No Flowers (1964). After appearing in films including Seconds (1966), Tobruk(1967) and Ice Station Zebra (1968) during the late 1960s, Hudson began a second career in television through the 1970s and 1980s, starring in the popular mystery series McMillan & Wife and the soap opera Dynasty. According to the 1986 biography Rock Hudson: His Story by Hudson and Sara Davidson, Hudson was good friends with American novelist Armistead Maupin. The book also names certain of Hudson’s lovers, including Jack Coates; Tom Clark (who published a memoir about Hudson, Rock Hudson: Friend of Mine), actor and stockbroker Lee Garlington, and Marc Christian (born Marc Christian MacGinnis), who later won a suit against the Hudson estate. Following Hudson’s death, Marc Christian, Hudson’s former lover, sued his estate on grounds of “intentional infliction of emotional distress.” Christian claimed that Hudson continued having sex with him until February 1985, more than eight months after Hudson knew that he had HIV. Although he repeatedly tested negative for HIV, Christian claimed that he suffered from “severe emotional distress” after learning from a newscast that Hudson had died of AIDS.

1993 – President Bill Clinton appoints Kristine Gebbie as the nation’s first AIDS coordinator. Dr. Gebbie is best known for being the first U.S. AIDS Czar, from 1993 to 1994, during the Clinton Administration. She was a member of the President’s Commission on the HIV Epidemic, formed by President Reagan, and an outspoken opponent of the Reagan Administration policies on AIDS testing.

1998 – actress Kathy Najimy  (February 6, 1957) is an American actress and comedian. She thanks the participants in San Diego gay pride for “being here because your being here gives me the chance to help my daughter love whoever the fuck she wants.”

2006 – First Transgender Pride march with over 2000 people is held, in San Francisco.


This Day in LGBT History – June 26

1892 – Newspapers across the US report on the murder of 17-year-old Freda Ward by her lover, 19-year-old Alice Mitchell. Both members of upper-class Memphis society, the two women had vowed never to separate. When Ward’s family refused to allow Mitchell to have contact with her, Mitchell waylaid Ward on a train and slashed her throat. Besides being one of the first times lesbianism is discussed in the nation’s media, the Mitchell-Ward case becomes a frequently cited example of the dangerous pathology” of same-sex love. Mitchell is later found insane and committed to an asylum.

1964 – Life Magazine runs a twelve-page feature of gay men’s culture in an article called “Homosexuality in America.”

1969 – A group of New York drag queens organize a memorial for the next night for Judy Garland who died several days earlier. Little did they know the wake would turn into a riot and give birth to the gay liberation movement.

1977 – Gay Pride Celebrations across the country, including the original Stonewall-inspired New York City march, are held today, attract record numbers of participants. The heavy turnout is a response to the backlash against gay and lesbian rights inspired by Anita Bryant’s campaign.

1988 – Art Agnos is the first San Francisco mayor to ride in a Gay Pride celebration parade.

2003 – The U.S. Supreme Court overturns Bowers v. Hardwick, the 1986 case that upheld sodomy laws. The Supreme Court strikes down a Texas anti-sodomy law, reversing an earlier decision made in another case 17 years earlier that Justice Anthony Kennedy said “demeans the lives of homosexual persons.” Gays are ”entitled to respect for their private lives,” Kennedy said for the court, according to The New York Times. ”The state cannot demean their existence or control their destiny by making their private sexual conduct a crime.” 

2005, Greece – The first LGBT Pride parade is held in Athens.

2013 – The Supreme Court heard a challenge to DOMA on March 27, 2013. Bill Clinton, who signed the legislation, came out against the law and asked the Supreme Court to repeal it. On June 26, SCOTUS declares the law unconstitutional and also holds that defenders of California’s same-sex marriage ban did not have the right to appeal lower court rulings striking down the ban. Bowers v. Hardwick478 U.S. 186 (1986), is a United States Supreme Court decision, overturned in 2003, that upheld, in a 5–4 ruling, the constitutionality of a Georgia sodomy law criminalizing oral and anal sex in private between consenting adults, in this case with respect to homosexual sodomy, though the law did not differentiate between homosexual sodomy and heterosexual sodomy.

2015 – The US Supreme Court rules 5 to 4 in Obergefell et al v. Hodges that the Constitution requires that same-sex couples be allowed to marry no matter where they live in the United States. With this ruling, the United States becomes the 17th country to legalize same-sex marriages entirely. Obergefell v. Hodges576 U.S. (2015) is a landmark United States Supreme Court case in which the Court held in a 5–4 decision that the fundamental right to marry is guaranteed to same-sex couples by both the Due Process Clause and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution


This Day in LGBT History – June 27

1869, Russia – Emma Goldman (June 27, 1869 – May 14, 1940) is born. She was an anarchist political activist and writer and played a pivotal role in the development of anarchist political philosophy in North America and Europe in the first half of the 20th century. In 1910, she begins speaking publicly in favor of homosexual rights. Goldman advocated passionately for the rights of women. Goldman was also an outspoken critic of prejudice against homosexuals. Her belief that social liberation should extend to gay men and lesbians was virtually unheard of at the time, even among anarchists. As German sexologist Magnus Hirschfeld wrote, “she was the first and only woman, indeed the first and only American, to take up the defense of homosexual love before the general public.” In numerous speeches and letters, she defended the right of gay men and lesbians to love as they pleased and condemned the fear and stigma associated with homosexuality. As Goldman wrote in a letter to Hirschfeld, “It is a tragedy, I feel, that people of a different sexual type are caught in a world which shows so little understanding for homosexuals and is so crassly indifferent to the various gradations and variations of gender and their great significance in life.” She was married to activist Alexander Berkman.

1952 – The McCarran-Walter Immigration and Nationality Act bars immigrants “afflicted with psychopathic personality,” a phrase that is interpreted to include all homosexuals.

1972, United Kingdom – The fortnightly Gay News, the first and best-known British gay newspaper, is founded in collaboration between former members of the Gay Liberation Front and members of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality (CHE). At the newspaper’s height, circulation was 18,000 to 19,000 copies. Gay News Ltd ceased trading on 15 April 1983.

1983 – Parades and rallies in cities across the U.S. are dedicated to people living with AIDS. In Chicago, former mayor Jane S. Byrne leads the city’s 14th annual Gay and Lesbian Parade, attended by about 30,000 people. The Centers for Disease Control reports 1,641 AIDS cases and 644 deaths. An estimated 70 percent of people with AIDS are gay.

1987  The NAMES Project displays the first 40 panels of The Quilt from the Mayor’s balcony at San Francisco City Hall. Each panel measured 3’x6′, the size of a human grave, and bore the name of an individual lost to AIDS. The NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt, often abbreviated to AIDS Memorial Quilt, is an enormous quilt made as a memorial to celebrate the lives of people who have died of AIDS-related causes. Weighing an estimated 54 tons, it is the largest piece of community folk art in the world as of 2016. The idea for the NAMES Project Memorial Quilt was conceived in 1985 by AIDS activist Cleve Jones (October 11, 1954) during the candlelight march, in remembrance of the 1978 assassinations of San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone.

1994 – Deborah Batts (April 13, 1947) becomes the first openly lesbian or gay US federal judge. She is a Senior United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. In June 1994, Deborah Batts was sworn in as a United States District Judge for Manhattan, becoming the nation’s first openly LGBT, American federal judge. She took senior status on her 65th birthday, April 13, 2012. On January 27, 1994, following the recommendation of Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, President Bill Clinton nominated Batts to a seat on the Southern District left open in 1989 when Judge Richard Owen took senior status. Batts was confirmed by the United States Senate on May 6, 1994, and received her commission on May 9, 1994. She took senior status on April 13, 2012. She continues to serve concurrently as an adjunct professor at Fordham University.

2006, Iceland – Iceland’s Parliament approves parenting equality.

2010, Iceland  – Iceland legalizes same-sex marriages. The first legal wedding of an LGBT world leader occurs when Johanna Siguardardottir (October 4, 1942), Iceland’s prime minister, marries her partner of 30 years, Jonina Leosdottir. She became Iceland’s first female Prime Minister and the world’s first openly gay head of government on February 1, 2009.

2011, Brazil  – The first same-sex civil union is converted into same-sex marriage by Sao Paolo State Judge Fernando Henrique Pinto.

2015 – The first-ever conference of LGBT College and University presidents is held in Chicago.


This Day in LGBT History – June 28

1934, Germany – Approximately 300 Nazi Party members are arrested and murdered in a purge ordered by Adolf Hitler that comes to be known as the Night of the Long Knives. The most prominent victim of the purge is SA (Brown Shirts) chief Ernst Rohm, a gay man whom Hitler accused of having formed a subversive “homosexual clique.”

1934, Germany – The Nazi government expands Paragraph 175 of the German Penal Code as follows: “A male who commits a sex offence with another male or allows himself to be used by another male for a sex offence shall be punished with imprisonment. Where a party was not yet twenty-one years of age at the time of the act, the court may in especially minor cases refrain from punishment.” The law did not include so-called “Aryan” women who loved women since the Nazis asserted that Aryan lesbians could still produce Aryan children for the “New Germany.” Paragraph 175a was also instituted: “Penal servitude up to ten years or, where there are mitigating circumstances, imprisonment of not less than three months shall apply to…a male over twenty-one years of age who seduces a male person under twenty-one years to commit a sex offence with him or to allow himself to be abused for a sex offence….” Arrests skyrocket from under 1000 in 1932 to over 8500 by 1938.

1959 –  In New York City, Ardouin Antonio, a 49-year-old JamaicanAmerican shipping clerk dies of Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia, a disease closely associated with AIDS. Dr. Gordon Hennigar, who performed the postmortem examination of the man’s body, found “the first reported instance of unassociated Pneumocystis carinii disease in an adult” to be so unusual that he preserved Ardouin’s lungs for later study. The case was published in two medical journals at the time, and Hennigar has been quoted in numerous publications saying that he believes Ardouin probably had AIDS.

1969 – A St. Louis teenager, identified as Robert Rayford, dies of an illness that baffles his doctors. Eighteen years later, molecular biologists at Tulane University in New Orleans test samples of his remains and find evidence of HIV.

1969 – Late night and into the early morning hours the next day, patrons of the Stonewall Inn at 53 Christopher Street in New York’s Greenwich Village fight back during a police raid, sparking three days of riots and the modern gay pride movement. Police raid the bar on the charge of selling alcohol without a license on June 28, 1969. Stormé DeLarverie (December 24, 1920 – May 24, 2014), a butch lesbian is said to have been responsible for starting the Stonewall riot at 1:20 am. A brave woman of color, she was hit on the head with a billy club and handcuffed. She was bleeding from the head when she brazenly turned to the crowd and hollered, “WHY DON’T YOU DO SOMETHING!?” Patrons-and the crowd gathered outside-fight back and the American Gay Liberation movement begins. Clientele fling bottles, rocks, bricks, and trash cans at the police and use parking meters as battering rams this day and for the next five nights. Transgender Sylvia Rivera (1951-2002) and Marsha P. Johnson are also ringleaders of the Stonewall Riot. Rivera is a founding member of both the Gay Liberation Front and Gay Activists Alliance, but the role of Rivera and her Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR) in helping to initiate the modern gay rights movement is quickly forgotten as gay activists seek to enter the mainstream.

1970 – Christopher Street Liberation Day marks the first anniversary of the Stonewall riots in NYC with the first Gay Rights Parade in U.S. History. Simultaneous marches take place in Los Angeles, San Francisco  and Chicago. Community members in New York City march through the local streets to recognize the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall riots. This event is named Christopher Street Liberation Day, and is now considered the first gay pride parade. About 15,000 people participate.

1970 – Los Angeles celebrates the Stonewall anniversary with a march down Hollywood Boulevard that draws about 1,000 people. Smaller marches take place in Chicago and San Francisco. The anniversary is also marked by special celebrations at gay bars around the world, including clubs in Buenos Aires, Argentina; Lima, Peru; and Managua, Nicaragua.

1975 – The first reports of wasting and other symptoms, later determined to be AIDS, are reported in residents of Africa. The daughter of Norwegian sailor Arvid Noe dies in January 1975. It is later determined that Noe contracted HIV/AIDS in Africa during the early 1960s. In 1977, Danish physician Margrethe P. Rask (1930 – 12 December 1977)dies of AIDS contracted in Africa. She was better known as Grethe Rask, a Danish physician and surgeon in Zaïre(now the Democratic Republic of the Congo). She returned to Denmark in 1977 after developing symptoms of an unknown disease which was later discovered to be AIDS. Rask is one of the first non-Africans to die of AIDS

1978, Canada – The Sixth National Gay Conference is hosted by the Gay Alliance for Equality in Halifax. At this meeting the National Gay Rights Coalition changed its names to the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Rights Coalition. 

1982, Columbia – The first Pride parade takes place. Thirty-two marchers and 100 police officers attended.

2000 – The U.S. Supreme Court rules the Boy Scouts of America can discriminate against gays and bisexuals saying it is a private organization and not bound by local human rights laws. Boy Scouts of America et al. v. Dale, 530 U.S. 640 (2000), was a case of the Supreme Court of the United States decided on June 28, 2000, that held that the constitutional right to freedom of association allows a private organization like the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) to exclude a person from membership when “the presence of that person affects in a significant way the group’s ability to advocate public or private viewpoints.” In a five to four decision, the Supreme Court ruled that opposition to homosexuality is part of BSA’s “expressive message” and that allowing homosexuals as adult leaders would interfere with that message. It reversed a decision of the New Jersey Supreme Court that had determined that New Jersey’s public accommodations law required the BSA to readmit assistant Scoutmaster James Dale (August 2, 1970) who had made his homosexuality public and whom the BSA had expelled from the organization.

2005 – Brenda Howard (December 24, 1946 – June 28, 2005) dies. She was an American bisexual rights activist, sex-positive feministpolyamorist and BDSM practitioner. Howard was an important figure in the modern LGBT rights movement. n 1987 Howard helped found the New York Area Bisexual Network to help co-ordinate services to the region’s growing Bisexual community. She was also an active member of the early bisexual political activist group BiPAC, a Regional Organizer for BiNet USA, a co-facilitator of the Bisexual S/M Discussion Group and a founder of the nation’s first Alcoholics Anonymous chapter for bisexuals.  Brenda Howard is known as the “Mother of Pride”, for her work in coordinating the first LGBT Pride march, and she also originated the idea for a week-long series of events around Pride Day which became the genesis of the annual LGBT Pride celebrations that are now held around the world every June. Additionally, Howard along with fellow LGBT rights activists Robert A. Martin (aka Donny the Punk) and L. Craig Schoonmaker are credited with popularizing the word “Pride” to describe these festivities.  As LGBT rights activist Tom Limoncelli put it, “The next time someone asks you why LGBT Pride marches exist or why [LGBT] Pride Month is June tell them ‘A bisexual woman named Brenda Howard thought it should be.’

2010 – The U.S. Supreme Court rules in Christian Legal Society v. Martinez that public universities may refuse to recognize student organizations with discriminatory membership policies. Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, 561 U.S. 661 (2011), is a United States Supreme Court case in which the Court upheld, against a First Amendment challenge, the policy of the University of California, Hastings College of the Law governing official recognition of student groups, which required the groups to accept all students regardless of their status or beliefs in order to obtain recognition.


This Day in LGBT History – June 29

1626, Vatican City – Pope Urban the Eighth gives Catalina de Erauso the right to live as a man named Francisco de Loyola who becomes a conquistador. Catalina de Erauso (in Spanish) or Katalina Erauso (in Basque), also known in Spanish as La Monja Alférez (1592  – 1650) was a personality of the Basque Country, Spain and Spanish America in the first half of the 17th century. For nearly 400 years, Catalina Erauso’s story has remained alive through historical studies, biographical stories, novels, movies and comics. New scholarship has questioned Erauso’s sexual orientation and gender identity. While Erauso never mentions specifically in his memoir being attracted to a man, there are numerous instances of relationships with other women.

1892 – Henry Gerber (June 29, 1892– December 31, 1972) is born in Bavaria. He emigrated to the United States in 1913. He and others in his family settled in Chicago because of its large German immigrant population. In 1917, Gerber was briefly committed to a mental institution because of his homosexuality. When the United States declared war on Germany, Gerber was given a choice: be interned as an enemy alien or enlist in the Army. Gerber chose the Army and was assigned to work as a printer and proofreader with the Allied Army of Occupation in Coblenz. He served for about three years. During his time in Germany, Gerber learned about Magnus Hirschfeld and the work he and his Scientific-Humanitarian Committee were doing to reform anti-homosexual German law (especially Paragraph 175, which criminalized sex between men).  Gerber traveled to Berlin, which supported a thriving gay subculture, on several occasions and subscribed to at least one homophile magazine. He absorbed Hirschfeld’s ideas, including the notion that homosexual men were naturally effeminate. Following his military service, Gerber returned to the United States and went to work for the post office in Chicago. Henry created the first gay rights organization in the United States which published Friendship and Freedom, the first American gay publication. The Society for Human Rights was the first recognized gay rights organization in the United States, having received a charter from the state of Illinois, and produced the first American publication for homosexuals, Friendship and Freedom. A few months after being chartered, the group ceased to exist in the wake of the arrest of several of the Society’s members. Despite its short existence and small size, the Society has been recognized as a precursor to the modern gay liberation movement.

1936 – In preparing Berlin for the Olympics, 52 gay men were taken to Mauthausen concentration camp.

1968, West Germany – The anti-gay Paragraph 175, adopted in 1871, is eased. It was finally repealed in 1994.

1969 – New York City’s Mattachine Action Committee issues a flier urging organized demonstrations in protest of the previous night’s police raid on the Stonewall Inn.

1972, Canada – Gays demonstrate at Queen’s Park (site of Ontario legislature in Toronto) to protest the omission of sexual orientation from amendments to Ontario Human Rights Code then being considered by legislature. It is the first public gay action around rights code reform.

1973 – The first bisexual religious organization, The Committee of Friends of Bisexuality, is founded by Stephen Donaldson in Ithaca, New York. They issue the “Ithaca Statement on Bisexuality” supporting bisexuals. The Statement, which may have been “the first public declaration of the bisexual movement” and “was certainly the first statement on bisexuality issued by an American religious assembly,” appeared in the Quaker Friends Journal and The Advocate in 1972.

1977 – Coors Beer Company takes out a full-page ad in The Advocate announcing that the Coors family did not contribute in any way to the defeat of Miami’s gay rights ordinance. Coors was already reeling from a union boycott.

1977, Canada – A Gallup Poll shows that 52 percent of Canadians believe gay people should be protected against discrimination under new Canadian Human Rights Act.

1989 – The Washington Times reports that VIP officials in the Reagan and Bush administrations were implicated in a federal investigation into a gay prostitution ring. After being identified as one of those under investigation, Elizabeth Dole’s adviser Paul Balach was forced to resign. Republican National Committee chairman Lee Atwater stated that it was wrong for people to be forced out of their jobs because of something that is strictly a personal matter.

1993, Ireland – Ireland decriminalizes same-sex relations for consenting adults and sets the age of consent at 17 for all sexual activities.

1998 – Researchers at the 12th World Conference on AIDS report that a drug-resistant strain of HIV had been identified.

1999California adopts a domestic partner law allowing same-sex couples equal rights, responsibilities, benefits, and protections as married couples. Enacted in 1999, the domestic partnership registry was the first of its kind in the United States created by a legislature without court intervention. Initially, domestic partnerships enjoyed very few privileges—principally just hospital-visitation rights and the right to be claimed as a next of kin of the estate of a deceased partner. 

2002, Croatia – The first Pride parade, in Zagreb, occurs.

2008 – Thomas Beatie (January 20, 1974), a transman, gives birth. Born Tracy Lehuanani LaGondino, is an American public speaker, author, and advocate of transgender and sexuality issues and a focus on trans fertility and reproductive rights. Beatie, a transman, had gender reassignment surgery in 2002. He became known as ‘The Pregnant Man’ after he became pregnant through artificial insemination in 2007. Beatie chose to become pregnant because his wife Nancy was infertile, doing so with cryogenic donated sperm. Beatie’s first pregnancy resulted in an ectopic pregnancy with triplets, requiring emergency surgery and resulting in the loss of all three fetuses. Beatie has since given birth to three children. The couple filed for divorce in 2012. The Beatie case is the first of its kind on record where a documented legal male gave birth within a traditional marriage to a woman, and for the first time, a court challenged a marriage where the husband gave birth.

2009 – The U.S. government apologizes to openly gay Frank Kameny (May 21, 1925 – October 11, 2011) for firing him in 1957. John Berry, Director of the Office of Personnel Management in the Obama administration, formally apologizes and presents Kameny with the Theodore Roosevelt Award, the department’s most prestigious honor. Kameny was an American gay rights activist. He has been referred to as “one of the most significant figures” in the American gay rights movement. In 1957, Kameny was dismissed from his position as an astronomer in the U.S. Army‘s Army Map Service in Washington, D.C. because of his homosexuality,[3] leading him to begin “a Herculean struggle with the American establishment” that would “spearhead a new period of militancy in the homosexual rights movement of the early 1960s”. Kameny formally appealed his firing by the U.S. Civil Service Commission due to homosexuality.[5] Although unsuccessful, the proceeding was notable as the first known civil rights claim based on sexual orientation pursued in a U.S. court.

2012 –  Fred Karger (January 31, 1950) ends his bid for president, making him the nation’s first openly gay Republican presidential candidate. He did not get far. Karger is an American political consultantgay rights activist and watchdog, former actor, and politician.[2] His unsuccessful candidacy for the Republican nomination for the election made him the first openly gay presidential candidate in a major political party in American history.[3][4] Although he has not held elected or public office, Karger has worked on nine presidential campaigns and served as a senior consultant to the campaigns of Presidents Ronald ReaganGeorge H. W. Bush and Gerald Ford. Karger was a partner at the Dolphin Group, a California campaign consulting firm. He retired after 27 years and has since worked as an activist on gay rights causes, from protecting the gay bar The Boom to using his organization Californians Against Hate to investigate The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) and the National Organization for Marriage‘s campaigns to repeal the state’s same-sex marriage law.


This Day in LGBT History – June 30

1865 – Walt Whitman (May 31, 1819 – March 26, 1892) is fired from his job in the U.S. Dept. of the Interior on moral grounds after his boss finds an 1860 copy of Leaves of Grass. He was an American poet, essayist, and journalist. A humanist, he was a part of the transition between transcendentalism and realism, incorporating both views in his works. Whitman is among the most influential poets in the American canon, often called the father of free verse. His work was very controversial in its time, particularly his poetry collection Leaves of Grass, which was described as obscene for its overt sexuality. Though biographers continue to debate Whitman’s sexuality, he is usually described as either homosexual or bisexual in his feelings and attractions. Whitman’s sexual orientation is generally assumed on the basis of his poetry, though this assumption has been disputed. His poetry depicts love and sexuality in a more earthy, individualistic way common in American culture before the medicalization of sexuality in the late 19th century. Though Leaves of Grass was often labeled pornographic or obscene, only one critic remarked on its author’s presumed sexual activity: in a November 1855 review, Rufus Wilmot Griswold suggested Whitman was guilty of “that horrible sin not to be mentioned among Christians.” Peter Doyle was most likely the love of Whitman’s life.

1919, Germany – The film entitled Different from Others is released. It’s one of the first sympathetic portrayals of homosexuals. It was produced during the Weimar Republic, starring Conrad Veidt and Reinhold Schünzel. The story was co-written by Richard Oswald and Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld, who also had a small part in the film and partially funded the production through his Institute for Sexual Science, with the aim of presenting the story as a polemic against the then-current laws under Germany’s Paragraph 175, which made homosexuality a criminal offense.

1969 – In Kew Gardens, Queens, New York, a vigilante group cuts down all the trees and bushes in part of a local park popular as a gay male cruising area. Lamenting the loss of greenery, The New York Times runs nine different articles on the ensuing controversy. The Stonewall Uprising and the protests that follow are mentioned a total of three times.

1969 – Ben Patrick Johnson (June 30, 1969) is born. He is a model and voice-over actor. Johnson’s first national exposure came in 1994 when he was chosen as co-host for Extra, an entertainment magazine show. Extra demoted Johnson to Senior Correspondent shortly after he came out as gay in the LGBT press and on KABC Talk radio, where he had been Director of Production prior to Extra. Warner Bros. Television, the producers of Extra, declined to comment on the demotion.

1973, Canada – The first lesbian conference in Canada is held at the YWCA in Toronto.

1979 – A group of 40 people in Cincinnati, Ohio who had reserved a city park pool for a gay pride party were outnumbered and attacked by local residents who threw rocks and bottles at them. Police arrived, watched for a while, and then drove away. One man had to be rescued by a television news crew. Police refused to return, even after several calls reporting a riot.

1981 – Florida governor Bob Graham signed the Bush-Trask Amendment into law. It denied state funding (including sports money and scholarships) to any university or college that allowed gay/lesbian/bisexual student organizations. The (Gay and Lesbian) Florida Task Force and several teachers’ organizations fought the amendment in the Florida Supreme Court where it was struck down as unconstitutional.

1984 – The Unitarian Church votes to approve ceremonies uniting same-sex couples.

1986 – The U.S. Supreme Court upholds the sodomy law in the Bowers v. Hardwick decision that criminalizes sex in private between consenting homosexual adults. The ruling is overturned in 2003 in the Lawrence v. Texas decision.

1990 – A wreath is laid at the London Cenotaph in memory of gays killed during the Holocaust. Estimates are that 250,000 gay men were murdered in the death camps, with an unknown number of lesbians killed.

2005, Spain –In Madrid, the Parliament legalizes same-sex marriage, defying conservatives and clergy who opposed making traditionally Roman Catholic Spain the third country to allow same-sex unions nationwide. Jubilant gay activists blew kisses to lawmakers after the vote.

2006 U.K. – Gay and lesbian naval personnel march in full uniform for the first time at EuroPride. More than 40 sailors, ranging from able seamen to Royal Navy Reserve commanders, led the parade in London. It was the first time that any military organization in the world allowed gay and lesbian service personnel to march in uniform at such an event. This inaugural event comes six years after a landmark ruling to allow gay people to serve openly in the British armed forces.

2013, Russia – Putin signs anti-Gay Propaganda law. The Russian federal law “for the Purpose of Protecting Children from Information Advocating for a Denial of Traditional Family Values”, also known in English-language media as the gay propaganda law and the so-called anti-gay law, is a bill that was unanimously approved by the State Duma on 11 June 2013 (with just one MP abstaining – Ilya Ponomarev).

2016 – Secretary of Defense Ash Carter announces that the Pentagon is lifting the ban on transgender people serving openly in the US military. The decision removes one of the last remaining barriers to LGBT participation in the armed forces.


This Day in LGBT History – July 1

1663, UK – English politician Samuel Pepys writes in his diary of his displeasure at how common sodomy had become in the country’s military.

1828, UK – The Buggery Act is repealed then reenacted, criminalizing sodomy.

1943 – Willem Arondeus (August 22, 1894 – July 1, 1943) dies. He was a Dutch artist and author, who joined the Dutch anti-Nazi resistance movement during World War II. He participated in the bombing of the Amsterdam public records office to hinder the Nazi German effort to identify Dutch Jews. Arondeus was caught and executed soon after his arrest along with tailor Sjoerd Bakker, and writer Johan Brouwer who also were gay.  Arondeus was openly gay before the war and defiantly asserted his sexuality before his execution. 1943, Germany – Thirteen resistance activists are shot by the Nazis. The last wish of Arondeus is that he be given a pink shirt. He declares: “Let it be known that homosexuals are not cowards.”

1919, Germany – In Berlin, Dr. Magnus Hirschfeld (May 14,1868 – May 14, 1935 founds the Institute for Sexual Science. It includes a department to advise men arrested for violation of Paragraph 175, the German sodomy law. Hirschfeld was a German Jewish physician and sexologist educated primarily in Germany; he based his practice in Berlin-Charlottenburg. An outspoken advocate for sexual minorities, Hirschfeld founded the Scientific Humanitarian Committee. Historian Dustin Goltz characterized this group as having carried out “the first advocacy for homosexual and transgender rights“.

1925 – Farley Granger (July 1, 1925 – March 27, 2011) is born. He was an American actor, best known for his two collaborations with director Alfred HitchcockRope in 1948 and Strangers on a Train in 1951. In 2007, Granger published the memoir Include Me Out, co-written with domestic partner Robert Calhoun (November 24, 1930 – May 24, 2008). In the book, named after one of Goldwyn’s famous malapropisms, he freely discusses his career and personal life.

1928 – “The Well of Loneliness” was published on this date in the United States and sold an initial 20,000 copies. The Well of Loneliness is a 1928 lesbian novel by the British author Radclyffe Hall (August 12, 1880 – October 7, 1943)  It follows the life of Stephen Gordon, an Englishwoman from an upper-class family whose “sexual inversion” (homosexuality) is apparent from an early age. She finds love with Mary Llewellyn, whom she meets while serving as an ambulance driver in World War I, but their happiness together is marred by social isolation and rejection, which Hall depicts as typically suffered by “inverts,” with predictably debilitating effects. The novel portrays inversion as a natural, God-given state and makes an explicit plea: “Give us also the right to our existence” In 1915 Hall fell in love with Una Troubridge(1887–1963), a sculptor with whom she lived at 37 Holland Street, Kensington, London. The relationship would last until Hall’s death. In 1934 Hall fell in love with Russian émigré Evguenia Souline and embarked upon a long-term affair with her which Troubridge painfully tolerated.

1934 – Hollywood makes adherence to the Hays Code mandatory. Among its provisions: “Pictures shall not infer that low forms of sex relationships are the accepted or common thing,” and “Sex perversion or any inference to it is forbidden on the screen.” The Motion Picture Production Code was the set of industry moral guidelines that was applied to most pictures released by major studios from 1930 to 1968. It is also popularly known as the Hays Code, after Will H. Hays, who was the president of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America (MPPDA) from 1922 to 1945. Under Hays’ leadership, the MPPDA, later known as the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA), adopted the Production Code in 1930 and began strictly enforcing it in 1934. The Production Code spelled out what was acceptable and what was unacceptable content for motion pictures produced for a public audience in the United States. Hays, Postmaster General under Warren G. Harding and former head of the Republican National Committee, served for 25 years as president of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America (MPPDA), where he “defended the industry from attacks, recited soothing nostrums, and negotiated treaties to cease hostilities”

1947 – US Congress discontinues military “Blue Discharges” with two new classifications: general and undesirable. The Army then changes its regulations so that gay and lesbian service members would not qualify for general discharges. The United States military had a long-standing policy that service members found to be homosexual or to have engaged in homosexual conduct were to be court-martialed for sodomy, imprisoned and dishonorably discharged. However, with the mobilization of troops following the United States’ entry into World War II, it became impractical to convene court-martial boards of commissioned officers and some commanders began issuing administrative discharges instead. Several waves of reform addressing the handling of homosexuals in the military resulted in a 1944 policy directive that called for homosexuals to be committed to military hospitals, examined by psychiatrists, and discharged under Regulation 615-360, section 8 as “unfit for service”. It is unknown exactly how many gay and lesbian service members were given blue discharges under this regulation, but in 1946 the Army estimated that it had issued between 49,000 and 68,000 blue discharges, with approximately 5,000 of them issued to homosexuals, while the Navy’s estimates of blue-discharge homosexuals was around 4,000. Blue discharges were discontinued as of July 1, 1947, and two new headings, general and undesirable, took their place.  A general discharge was considered to be under honorable conditions—distinct from an “honorable discharge”—and an undesirable discharge was under conditions other than honorable—distinct from a “dishonorable discharge”.[1] At the same time, the Army changed its regulations to ensure that gay and lesbian service members would not qualify for general discharges. Those found guilty of engaging in homosexual conduct still received dishonorable discharges, while those identified as homosexuals but not to have committed any homosexual acts now received undesirable discharges.

1969 – In Norton v. Macy, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit rules that the termination of a National Aeronautics and Space Administration employee for “immoral conduct” relating to his alleged homosexual conduct was unlawful.

1970 – The Task Force on Gay Liberation forms within the American Library Association. Now known as the GLBT Round Table, this organization is the oldest LGBT professional organization in the United States. On July 1st at the ALA Annual Conference in Detroit, MI, the Task Force on Gay Liberation meets for the first time. Israel Fishman serves as the first coordinator of the group. A social and “consciousness-raising event” was held with members of the Detroit Gay Liberation Front. Initial goals of the group included: the creation of bibliographies, revision of library classification schemes and subject headings, building and improving access to collections, and fighting job discrimination. Barbara Gittings (July 31, 1932 – February 18, 2007) puts together a list of 37 gay-positive books, magazine articles, and pamphlets – the first version of a resource that would become known as “A Gay Bibliography.”

1971, UK – London underground newspaper “The International Times” appeals its conviction on indecency charges for having run classified ads for gay men. The judge refused to overturn the decision, saying that to encourage homosexual acts must remain a crime.

1971, Canada – The founding meetings of the Gay Alliance Toward Equality (GATE) are held in Vancouver. It is the first Canadian group to talk about civil rights strategies.

1971 UK – A court upholds a lower-court decision ruling that personal ads for gay men and lesbians constitute “indecency” whether or not same-sex relations are legal.

1971, Austria – The Parliament rescinds laws against sex between consenting adults but adds legislation penalizing individuals who make public statements or join organizations that favor homosexuality. Although the new legislation is used to harass lesbians and gay men and, later, to prevent the import of gay and lesbian pornography, including safer sex literature, no individuals or organizations are successfully prosecuted under the laws.

1972, UK – The United Kingdom’s first Gay Pride March draws about 2,000 gay men and lesbians to the center of London.

1975, Mexico – Lesbian activists at the first United Nations World Conference on Women come to the attention of the world press when Pedro Gringoire attacks their efforts to make lesbian rights part of the conference agenda in an essay published in Excelsior, the country’s leading newspaper. Gringoire calls lesbianism a “pathological irregularity,” a “sexual aberration,” and a “severe illness.” Lesbian activists score gains in visibility as a result, but fail to elicit an official response to their demands at the conference.

1975 – California and Washington decriminalize private consensual adult homosexual acts. Indiana does so the following year.

1975 – Blue Boy magazine debuts. Blueboy, originally written Blue Boy, was a gay pornographic/ lifestyle magazine with pictures of men in various states of undress from 1974 to 2007. It was published by Donald N. Embinder, a former advertising representative for After Dark, an arts magazine with a substantial gay readership.[1] Embinder first used the nom de plume Don Westbrook, but soon assumed his real name on the masthead.

1978, Canada – In Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan, a gay protest rally responds to visit of Anita Bryant to province. It is the first such rally in the city. 

1978 – A Ladies Home Journal magazine poll of junior and senior high school students results in the naming of Adolph Hitler and Anita Bryant as the two people who have “done the most damage in the world.” 

1979 – The Susan B. Anthony dollar makes its debut.  While there were many complaints about the coin, it was mostly because it was nearly the same size as a quarter, not that it was the first U.S. coin to feature the likeness of a lesbian. Susan Brownell Anthony (February 15, 1820 – March 13, 1906) was an American social reformer and women’s rights activist who played a pivotal role in the suffrage movement. Born into a Quaker family committed to social equality, she collected anti-slavery petitions at the age of 17. In 1856, she became the New York state agent for the American Anti-Slavery Society. In 1851, she met Elizabeth Cady Stanton, who became her lifelong friend and co-worker in social reform activities, primarily in the field of women’s rights. In 1852, they founded the New York Women’s State Temperance Society after Anthony was prevented from speaking at a temperance conference because she was female. In 1863, they founded the Women’s Loyal National League, which conducted the largest petition drive in United States history up to that time, collecting nearly 400,000 signatures in support of the abolition of slavery. In 1866, they initiated the American Equal Rights Association, which campaigned for equal rights for both women and African Americans. The Nineteenth Amendment, which guaranteed the right of women to vote, was popularly known as the Susan B. Anthony Amendment. Historian Lillian Faderman suggests that Susan B. Anthony may have had relationships with Anna Dickinson, Rachel Avery and Emily Gross at different times in her life. Her niece Lucy Anthony was a life partner of suffrage leader and Methodist minister Anna Howard Shaw

1983 – A toll-free line was set up by the Department of Health and Human Services to answer questions about AIDS.

1986 – Renowned science-fiction writer Arthur C. Clarke (December 16, 1917 – March 19, 2008) comes very close to coming out in an interview published in Playboy magazine. When Clarke was asked if he’s had bisexual experiences, he responded, “Of course! Who hasn’t?” He is perhaps most famous for being co-writer of the screenplay for the 1968 film 2001: A Space Odyssey, widely considered to be one of the most influential films of all time

1987 – President Reagan nominates openly homophobic Robert Bork to the U.S. Supreme Court. The nomination is rejected by the U.S. Senate for a wide-variety of reasons. 

1989 – Professional body builder Bob Paris (December 14, 1959) comes out in an interview in Ironman magazine. He is an American writer, actor, public speaker, civil rights activist and former professional bodybuilder. Paris was the 1983 NPC American National and IFBB World Bodybuilding Champion, Mr. Universe. He was the world’s first male professional athlete, in any sport, to come out in the media while still an active competitor in his sport. The same year, Paris appeared on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” discussing marriage and being gay. Oprah asked Paris, “Bob, why not just stay in the closet?” Paris explained how “you fall in love” and that it doesn’t feel right to hide it. Paris and his former boyfriend, Rod Jackson, became symbols for gay marriage and advocated gay rights. Paris’s career ended up suffering because he came out as gay; he claims his life was even threatened through mail and by phone.[6] Paris lost about 80% of his bookings and endorsements for bodybuilding. Today, Paris lives with his spouse, Brian LeFurgey, on an island near Vancouver, British Columbia. Together since 1996, Bob and Brian were legally married in British Columbia after the province equalized the marriage laws in 2003.

1989 – The Centers for Disease Control announces that the number of confirmed AIDS cases in the United States has topped the 100,000 mark. 

2006 – Florida Republican gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist’s (July 24, 1956) campaign ads were carefully worded to include his support of “traditional marriage.” Media stories throughout the campaign claimed that Crist is gay. He is the U.S. Representative for Florida’s 13th congressional district. He had also previously served as the 44th Governor of Florida from 2007 to 2011. In January 2014, Crist apologized for his support for the 2008 same-sex marriage ban and for the same-sex adoption ban, telling an Orlando LGBT publication that “I’m sorry I did that. It was a mistake. I was wrong. Please forgive me. On May 9, 2013, Crist announced that he supports same-sex marriage; “I most certainly support marriage equality in Florida and look forward to the day it happens here.”[113] In both 2006 and 2008, Crist announced his support for the Federal Marriage Amendment although by 2010, he had endorsed adoption rights for gay couples.

2009, Hungary – Registered partnerships go into effect.

2010, Denmark – Denmark allows same sex couples to apply jointly for adoptions.


This Day in LGBT History – July 2

1899 – Actor Charles Laughton is born in Scarborough, England. Laughton (July 1, 1899 – December 15, 1962) was an English stage and film character actor, director, producer and screenwriter. Not blessed with matinee idol looks, Laughton built a brilliant career as a character actor and still earned his fair share of male lovers. His wife Elsa Lanchester (October 28, 1902 –  December 26, 1986) was a British-born American actress with a long career in theatre, film and television. Elsa knew all about his boys. In her biography of Laughton she was candid and loving in her descriptions of his affairs.  

1953 – The Los Angeles Herald-Express reports that the State Department had fired 531 sex perverts and other security risks. The number of homosexuals fired was 425 from 1947-1953. More people lost their jobs for being gay than for involvement with the Communist party.

1969 – In New York City, 500 people confront police in the first “gay pride” demonstration during a march down Christopher Street.

1970 – The Fifth Biennial Convention of the Lutheran Church in America expresses its opposition to discrimination and oppression of gay men and lesbians.

1974, Canada – In Winnipeg, Derksen Printers refuse to print “Understanding Homosexuality,” an educational publication of Gays for Equality. The group pickets the printing plant. 

1981 – “Rare Cancer Seen in Homosexuals” is the first story in The New York Times about the mysterious disease that will later be named AIDS.

1984 – Figure skater Johnny Weir (July 2, 1984) is born. He is a two-time Olympian, the 2008 World bronze medalist, a two-time Grand Prix Final bronze medalist, the 2001 World Junior Champion, and a three-time U.S. national champion (2004–2006). Weir is openly gay. In 2011, Weir married Victor Voronov (b. 1984), a Georgetown Law graduate of Russian Jewish descent, in a civil ceremony on New Year’s Eve in New York City.

1989 –  Internal Revenue Service employees who are members of the National Treasury Employees Union receive a new contract that includes protection from discrimination based on sexual orientation.

2009, India – Same-sex sex acts are decriminalized in India, citing that the existing laws violate fundamental rights to personal liberty. The Delhi High Court rules that the existing laws violate fundamental rights to personal liberty (Article 21 of the Indian Constitution) and equality (Article 14) and prohibition of discrimination (Article 15). Before the overturning of this 148-year-old law, so-called homosexual acts were punished with a ten-year prison sentence.


Back tomorrow, July 3rd! 

Warmly,

Ronni

 

 

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