Today in LGBT History – August 5

I saw this on Face Book. Powerful…

We told you, and you told us to calm down.

We saw the storm clouds building on the horizon. We saw the storms that wiped out people in the 1980s when the Reagans let us die in the streets. The storms that rained down on Marsha P. Johnson’s lifeless body, ruled a suicide despite the massive wound on the back of her head, arms that hurled bricks for liberation lifeless. The storms that brewed and cleared and shed light on Matthew Shepherd in a field in Wyoming. We saw the dark clouds on the horizon, the clouds that kept us in the closet, the clouds that drove s to attempt suicide, the clouds that drove us to succeed at suicide, the clouds that keep us from touching our partners in public.

We told you, and you told us to calm down.

Donald Trump stuttered the letters “LGBT” at the Republican Convention, letters that fell like lumpy marbles out of his mouth; Trump had no idea how they got there, but he was happy to get them out.

We told you about him. We were told that we were overreacting.

Day one we were erased from the White House website. In February, Betsy DeVos smiled and said transgender students would not be protected in their schools. In March, protections against hiring discriminations were revoked. In April, a lawsuit against North Carolina’s LGBTQ discrimination. Today, Trump, a draft dodger, said transgender people cannot serve in the military, and it is rumored the Department of Justice is now saying LGBTQ people are not covered under the Civil Rights Act.

We told you. We have been telling you. We need your help because they will kill us. These are dog whistles to anyone in a MAGA hat that it’s open season on faggots. These are blazing beacons of the discrimination and violence that is coming.

We’re telling you. We’ve seen it before. It’s here, and it will only grow.

Allies, we need you to get it and listen and act because we don’t want to be a new quilt.

                                                                          -written by Sarah Elizabeth

 Today in LGBT History – August 5

1473, Italy – Leonardo Da Vinci (April 15, 1452 – May 2, 1519) draws his earliest known work, the Tuscan valley of Arno. His best known is the Mona Lisa. He was an Italian Renaissance polymath whose areas of interest included invention, painting, sculpting, science, music, mathematicsengineering, literature, anatomy, geologyastronomybotanywritinghistory, and cartography. He has been called the father of paleontologyichnology, and architecture, and is widely considered one of the greatest painters of all time. Sometimes credited with the inventions of the parachute, helicopter and tank, he epitomized the Renaissance humanist ideal. Leonardo was widely suspected of being gay but the identity label didn’t exist during his lifetime. Today, Leonardo is widely considered one of the most diversely talented individuals ever to have lived.

1730, Germany – Crown Prince Frederick, later Frederick The Great of Prussia was thought to have been in a relationship with Hans Hermann von Katte. They tried to escape from Prussia but were caught, arrested, and imprisoned for treason. Frederick was released by his father. Von Katte wasn’t so lucky. Sentenced only to imprisonment, the verdict was upgraded by the vindictive monarch. As part of Frederick William’s ongoing project to break his son, he made him watch his friend’s beheading from close enough proximity to beg (and receive) von Katte’s forgiveness. Katte was beheaded on Nov. 6, 1730.

1970 – In New York City, the Rockefeller Five, part of the Gay Activists Alliance, appear in court, but their trial is postponed (charges are later dismissed). The GAA was most active from 1970 to 1974 and performed what they called zaps, (protests conceived by Marty Robinson) which were peaceful public confrontations with officials to draw media attention. Some of their more visible actions included protests against an anti-gay episode on the popular TV series Marcus Welby, M.D., a zap of Mayor John Lindsay at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and later at Radio City Music Hall. But the best known was a sit-in at the offices of then Governor Rockefeller as part of a push for a Gay Civil Rights Bill to become state law

1973, Canada – The Canadian Gay Archives is founded by The Body Politic, with newspaper’s back files as foundation. 

1982 – The Philadelphia City Council passes a gay rights law when Mayor William Green neither signed nor vetoed it.

1986 – The Health Insurance Association of America files a suit claiming a law that had recently been approved to prohibit discrimination against people with HIV in health insurance was unconstitutional.

1987 – The ACLU files suit on behalf of a Chicago physician whose duties were limited because he had AIDS.

1988 – Screenwriter and director Colin Higgins (28 July 1941 – 5 August 1988) dies of complications from AIDS at age 47. He wrote the classic comedies Harold and Maude, Nine to Five, and The Best Little Whorehouse in Texas. Two years before his death, Higgins had established the Colin Higgins Foundation that annually presents awards for outstanding work in the areas of AIDS education, advocacy, and the empowerment of the LGBTQ community.

1997 – The Dallas Morning News reports that in Texas, since 1990, twenty-one men had been murdered in anti-gay attacks.

1998 – The U.S. House of Representatives rejects a proposal to nullify President Clinton’s executive order banning discrimination based on sexual orientation in federal employment.

1999 – Charles Monroe Butler, Jr. and Steven Mullin were found guilty of the anti-gay murder of Billy Jack Gaither in Alabama and sentenced to life without parole.

2005 – A bill to allow civil unions in Oregon dies when the state legislature adjourns without voting.

2012, Mexico – Isabel Vargas Lizano (April 17,1919 – August 5, 2012) dies. She was better known as Chavela Vargas, a Costa Rican-born Mexican singer. She was especially known for her rendition of Mexican rancheras, but she is also recognized for her contribution to other genres of popular Latin American music. She had been an influential interpreter in the Americas and Europe, muse to figures such as Pedro Almodóvar, hailed for her haunting performances, and called “la voz áspera de la ternura”, the rough voice of tenderness. The Latin Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences presented her with a Latin GRAMMY Statuette in 2007 after receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award on behalf of that organization. Vargas was alleged to have had an affair with bisexual Frida Kahlo (July 6, 1907 – July 13, 1954) during Kahlo’s marriage to muralist Diego Rivera

August 5-21, 2016 – A record number of openly LGB athletes compete in the summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. The Human Rights Campaign estimates that there are at least 41 openly lesbian, gay and bisexual Olympians – up from 23 who participated in London 2012 – though puts that number at 49.

Let your voice speak out and change the world! 




(Historical information obtained from a variety of sources including QUIST at,, Lavender Effect,, Arron’s Gay Info, All Things Queer, RS Levinson, Amara Das Wilhelm, Safe Schools Coalition, and/or Wikipedia. If you wish to edit an item or add an item, please send an email to me at Thanks!)

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