Today in LGBT History – AUGUST 9

Rudyard Kipling said: If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten. The snippets of LGBTQ history here are the stories of our lives, the stories of the giants on whose shoulders we all stand. Learn about them then tell the stories and remember… because knowing your history IS resistance!

Thanks for taking this journey with me. Now go write your story!

Today in LGBT History – AUGUST 9

1858, Ottoman Empire – The Ottoman Empire decriminalizes consensual homosexuality.

1858 – Raphael Gallenti, a sailor from Malta, is thought to be the first person to be arrested for sodomy in California. He served a five-year prison sentence and was released on this day.

1958 – Amanda Bearse (born August 9, 1958) is an American actressdirector and comedian best known for her role as neighbor Marcy Rhoades (Seasons 1-5) and Marcy D’Arcy (Seasons 5-11) on Married… with Children, a sitcom that aired in the United States from 1987 to 1997, and for her performance in the 1985 horror filmFright Night opposite William Ragsdale. She has been publicly out as a lesbian since 1993and has an adopted daughter.

1967, UK – English playwright Joe Orton is murdered by his lover Kenneth Halliwell. John Kingsley “Joe” Orton (1 January 1933 – 9 August 1967) was an English playwright and author. His public career was short but prolific, lasting from 1964 until his death three years later. During this brief period he shocked, outraged, and amused audiences with his scandalous black comedies. The adjective Ortonesque is sometimes used to refer to work characterized by a similarly dark yet farcical cynicism. On August 9, 1967, Kenneth Halliwell bludgeoned 34-year-old Orton to death at their home at 25 Noel Road, Islington, London, with nine hammer blows to the head, and then committed suicide with an overdose of 22 Nembutal tablets washed down with the juice from canned grapefruit. Investigators determined that Halliwell had died first, because Orton’s sheets were still warm.

1970, Israel – Sharon Afek (born August 10, 1970) became the Israel Defense Forces’ first openly gay major general. Sharon Afek revealed he is gay, making him the first member of high command and the most senior Israeli military officer to come out.

1972 – The Ohio Secretary of State refuses to grant articles of incorporation to the Greater Cincinnati Gay Society. Two years later, the Ohio Supreme Court upholds the decision, stating that even though homosexual acts are now legal in Ohio, “the promotion of homosexuality as a valid life style is contrary to the public policy of the State of Ohio.”

1973 – Donald Cawley, New York City police commissioner, issues a directive prohibiting police officers from using derogatory terms to refer to homosexuals.

1977, Canada – Gay community leaders in Toronto hold a press conference to deplore press coverage of Manuel Jaques’ murder which implicated the entire gay community.

1986 – Gay Games II opened in San Francisco. The games ran until August 17, 1986. The games were billed as “3482 Athletes (40% women), from 251 Cities in 17 Countries, participating in 17 Sporting Events.”

1996 – Oregon judge Stephen Gallagher Jr. rules that the state must offer benefits to the partners of gay state employees. Lon Mabon, director of the anti-gay Oregon Citizens Alliance which challenges the governor’s executive order to grant benefits, said the ruling aids in the systematic destruction of the whole notion of family.

1998, UK – Dr. George Carey, Archbishop of Canterbury, issues an apology to GLB Anglicans for the pain they experienced as a result of the Lambeth Conference of Bishops resolution against homosexuality.

2000 – Dr. Saul Levin was appointed president of the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association (GLMA) . GLMA: Health Professionals Advancing LGBT Equality is an internationalorganization of lesbiangaybisexualtransgender, and ally (LGBT) healthcare professionals and students of all disciplines, including physicians, advanced practice nurses, physician assistants, nurses, behavioral health specialists, researchers and academicians, and their supporters in the United States and internationally. Founded in 1981 as the American Association of Physicians for Human Rights, GLMA “came out of the closet” and changed its name in 1994 to the Gay and Lesbian Medical Association. GLMA changed its name again in 2012 to GLMA: Health Professionals Advancing LGBT Equality.

2004 – Domestic partner registry opens in Miami Beach, Florida.

2005 – Nepal police begin rounding up transsexuals in a sweep of the capital, Katmandu.

2007 – Democrat presidential candidates appear at a forum organized by the gay community. It was televised on LOGO and streamed online. Most candidates said they approved civil unions but not gay marriage. Republican homophobe candidates would not agree to a similar forum. Six Democrats participate in the forum, including Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, while all Republican candidates decline.

Stand up, speak out, share your story!




(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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