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 – MARCH 29
1953 – The Los Angeles Timesaccuses the Mattachine Society of “dangerously subversive activities.” The Mattachine Society, founded in 1950, was one of the earliest LGBT (gay rights) organizations in the United States, probably second only to Chicago‘s Society for Human Rights. Communist and labor activist Harry Hay formed the group with a collection of male friends in Los Angeles to protect and improve the rights of gay men. Branches formed in other cities and by 1961 the Society had splintered into regional groups. At the beginning of gay rights protest, news on Cuban prison work camps for homosexuals inspired Mattachine Society to organize protests at the United Nations and the White House, in 1965. In 2002, Mattachine Midwest was inducted into the Chicago Gay and Lesbian Hall of Fame. A new Mattachine Society of Washington, D.C. was formed in 2011 and is dedicated to original archival research of LGBT political history.
1976 – By a vote of 6 to 3, the U.S. Supreme Court upholds the constitutionality of Virginia’s sodomy laws
1985 – The Los Angeles Times comes out in favor of gay rights and urges the U.S. Supreme Court to take a stand on more gay-related issues
1988 – Georgetown University, the nation’s oldest Roman Catholic university, loses an eight-year legal battle to keep from having to provide facilities and financial support to the campus’s gay student groups
1989 – The Academy Awards, produced this year by gay producer Allan Carr (May 27, 1937 – June 29, 1999), showcases a now infamous rendition of “Proud Mary” sung by Rob Lowe and an actress dressed as the Disney version of Snow White. Says Carr before the ceremony, “It really was my childhood dream to produce the Oscars. I’m a child of the movies.” In 1966, Carr founded the talent agency Allan Carr Enterprises, managing the actors Tony Curtis, Peter Sellers, Rosalind Russell, Dyan Cannon, Melina Mercouri, andMarlo Thomasand many more. Some of the other entertainment figures whose careers he managed were Ann-Margret, a string of In 2017 a documentary about Carr’s life was released entitled The Fabulous Allan Carr. The director of The Fabulous Allan Carr Jeffrey Schwarz said, “Although it was no secret that Allan Carr was gay, he never formally acknowledged it publicly. The word ‘flamboyant’ was used to describe him, a code word.”
1990 – Delivering his first speech on AIDS since he took office fourteen months earlier, President Bush is heckled by National Gay and Lesbian Task Force director Urvashi Vaid (October 8, 1958), who hollers, “We need your leadership! We need more than one speech every fourteen months!” Vaid, holding a sign reading “TALK IS CHEAP, AIDS FUNDING IS NOT,” is quickly “escorted” from the auditorium by police
2009 – Oscar Wilde Memorial Bookstore in New York, the first LGBTQ bookstore in the country, closes. It had opened in 1967. Craig Rodwell (October 31, 1940 – June 18, 1993)opened the New York City-based Oscar Wilde Memorial Bookshop in 1967. It was the first book store devoted to gay and lesbian authors. It closed in 2009. Initially located at 291 Mercer Street, it moved in 1973 to Christopher Street and Gay Street in New York City‘s Greenwich Villageneighborhood. It is named after author Oscar Wilde. The bookstore closed on March 29, 2009
Stand up, speak out, share your story!
(Historical information obtained from a variety of sources including QUIST at facebook.com/quistapp, Back2Stonewall.com, Lavender Effect, DataLounge.com, Arron’s Gay Info, All Things Queer, RS Levinson, Amara Das Wilhelm, out.com, Safe Schools Coalition, and/or Wikipedia. If you wish to edit an item or add an item, please send an email to me at email@example.com. Thanks!)