1955: Frank Kameny is fired from his job as an astronomer in the United States Army’s Map Service in Washington, D.C. because of his homosexuality. A few days later he is blacklisted from seeking federal employment. These events spur Kameny into being a gay rights activist.
1955: In the wake of the murder of a Sioux City, Iowa, boy earlier in the year, 29 men suspected of homosexuality have been committed to mental asylums as a preventive measure authorized by the state’s “sexual psychopath” laws.
2010: Voters in El Paso, Texas pass an initiative that strips health insurance benefits from the unmarried partners of city employees. Supporters say that their intention was to target gay city employees and their partners.
1955: Three men are arrested in Boise, Idaho on charges of lewd conduct and sodomy, inciting a “moral panic” in Boise that resulted in 16 arrests, 15 convictions and almost 1,500 people being questioned.
1932: Robert Reed, best known for playing the ideal father and husband of the 1970s, Mike Brady, is born John Robert Rietz, Jr. in the northeast Chicago suburb of Highland Park, Illinois.
1955: In San Francisco, four lesbian couples, including Phyllis Lyon and Del Martin, found the Daughters of Bilitis, the first homophile organization exclusively for women. 1982: The Oklahoma Supreme Court awards custody of two boys to their divorced gay father, declaring homosexuality isn’t in itself grounds for ruling a parent unfit. 1993: Married … with Children‘s Amanda Bearse talks…
1955: Actor and drag artist John Epperson, aka Lypsinka, is born in Hazlehurst, Mississippi. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BxjILGxNNKo]
1955: In the wake of a moral panic brought on by the sexual assault and murder of a boy in 1954, Iowa enacts a “sexual psycopath” law, allowing for the involuntary commitment of anyone charged with a public offense who possessed “criminal propensities toward the commission of sex offenses”. Twenty gay men from the Sioux…
1955: Rob Epstein, Oscar-winning producer of The Times of Harvey Milk, Common Threads, and The Celluloid Closet is born in New Jersey. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JL_vrb4-6_0]