Saturday, June 28, 2008

Happy Pride Weekend!

In light of it being June 28, the anniversary of the beginning of the Stonewall Riots, let's take a moment to thank and remember some of our predecessors in the LGBT rights movement:

Harry Hay, founder of the Mattachine Society in 1950, the first gay rights organization in the U.S.

Richard Leitsch, who became president of the New York chapter of the Mattachine Society around 1965, for his bravery in protesting the NYC police department's entrapment of gay men and raids on "gay" bars (any establishment knowingly serving three or more homosexuals at once).

The transwomen of the Compton Cafteria Riot, in 1966.

Heterosexual folk singer, Dave van Ronk, who was walking through the area the night of the Stonewall Riots, grabbed by police, taken into the Stonewall Inn and beaten. Thank you for making a strong case for the inclusion of sexual orientation in hate crime legislation, showing that gay people aren't the only unnecessary victims of violence against gay people.

The 2000 so-called "butch" women and "effeminate" men who stood up to the 400 officers that night.

I hope everyone has a safe and happy pride this year!