July 6 in LGBTQ History

1973: Infuriated and disgusted by “all those young punks who have been beating up” gay men in San Francisco, a gay Pentecostal Evangelist, the Rev. Ray Broshears, founds the so-called Lavender Panthers, a group of street vigilantes who patrol the city’s gay meeting areas to ward off potential attacks from “fag-bashers.” Shortly after their founding, the Panthers also begin holding classes in self-defense skills for gay men.

1981: A federal judge rules that a Houston ordinance prohibiting men from cross-dressing is unconstitutional.

1989: A New York court rules that for the purpose of defining rent-control regulations a gay couple may be considered a “family,” and that William Rubenstein may remain in the Manhattan apartment he and his late lover shared for ten years.

1990: Bay Area television reporter Paul Wynne dies of AIDS in San Francisco at the age of forty-seven. Wynne had chronicled the development of his disease and his feelings as he neared death in a weekly video diary that aired for nearly seven months on KGO, the local ABC affiliate. “This is the face of AIDS,” he told viewers, in a close-up of his gaunt face during the diary’s premiere on January 11, 1990.

2009: The District of Columbia recognizes same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions.

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