October 11 in LGBTQ History

1981: In Los Angeles, then twenty-one year old Prince opens for the Rolling Stones. He is booed off the stage with taunts of “Faggot!” and “F*cking queer!”

1987: The Second National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights (aka “The Great March”) takes place in Washington, DC. The march, demonstration, and rally also included the first public display of Cleve Jones’s NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt. It is approximately the size of two football fields. The initial 200,000 person estimate, widely quoted from the New York Times, was made several hours before the march actually began; similarly, most of the pictures used by mainstream media were taken early in the morning, or of the AIDS Quilt viewing area rather than the march itself. Police on the scene estimated numbers during the actual march to be closer to half a million.

1988: Commemorating the first anniversary of The Great March on Washington, today is the first National Coming Out Day, founded by Robert H. Eichberg, a psychologist and activist, and Jean O’Leary, executive director of National Gay Rights Advocates.

1988: In Maryland, more than 1,000 demonstrators, led by ACT UP activists, invade the grounds of the Federal Food and Drug Administration to focus attention on the AIDS crisis and to protest the agency’s slow drug approval process. About 150 demonstrators are arrested.

1994: The Colorado Supreme Court affirms a lower district court’s ruling that Amendment 2 is unconstitutional.

2009: National Equality March takes place in Washington, DC


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