Tag: 1980

July 21 in LGBTQ History

1980: Thirty-two-year-old Italian Enso Francone, in Moscow for the summer Olympics, chains himself to a fence in Red Square to protest Soviet persecution of homosexuals. With Western journalists looking on, a group of KGB officers moves in and drags Francone away. 1981: George Hamilton plays the twin roles of Don Diego Vega and his look-alike gay brother … Read More

July 8 in LGBTQ History

1980: The Democratic Rules Committee states that it will not discriminate against homosexuals. At their National Convention on August 11-14, the Democrats become the first political party to endorse a homosexual rights platform. 2010: United States District Court Judge Joseph L. Tauro rules in two separate cases that Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act is … Read More

June 20 in LGBTQ History

1980: The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence make their debut in the San Francisco’s annual Gay Freedom Day Parade. 1980: Can’t Stop the Music – a sanitized film “biography” of the Village People, directed by Nancy Walker, opens nationwide. The Advocate calls it “thunderingly bad,” while The New York Times dismisses it as “mostly dead air … … Read More

June 3 in LGBTQ History

1980: Three local gay rights measures in California-in Davis, San Jose, and Santa Clara County are defeated in referendum elections. 1984: Harvey Fierstein wins his third Tony Award, this time for Best Book of a Musical for La Cage aux Folles. In open defiance of the Tonys’ executive producer-who had begged everyone to “please, please … Read More

May 30 in LGBTQ History

1431: Joan of Arc is burned at the stake for heresy. Among her “crimes” are cross-dressing and inappropriate relationships with women. 1968: Los Angeles Homophile groups organize a “gay-in” in Griffith Park. 1977: In an essay in Newsweek, applauding the efforts of Anita Bryant in Florida, columnist George Will condemns gay rights ordinances as “part … Read More

April 30 in LGBTQ History

1980: “Young, Gay and Proud”-the first gay-themed title from the Boston-based publisher Alyson Publications-arrives in bookstores. The publishing house, founded by gay activist Sasha Alyson, goes on to become the country’s principal gay small press giving many prominent gay writers their start. 1983: More than eighteen thousand people fill Madison Square Garden for what is … Read More

April 26 in LGBTQ History

1980: CBS broadcasts an hour-long documentary entitled “Gay Power, Gay Politics” that alleges to be about the emergence of gay political clout in San Francisco, but instead focuses obsessively on more lascivious aspects of gay sexuality, making them seem like the focus of the entire gay rights movement. In one segment, close-ups track the arrival … Read More

April 21 in LGBTQ History

1966: Members of the Mattachine Society stage a “sip-in” at the Julius Bar in Greenwich Village, where the New York Liquor Authority prohibits serving gay patrons in bars on the basis that homosexuals are “disorderly.” Society president Dick Leitsch and other members announce their homosexuality and are immediately refused service.  Following the sip-in, the Mattachine Society … Read More

February 15 in LGBTQ History

1980: William Friedkin’s Cruising opens nationwide and is blasted by critics (gay and straight) for its depiction of homosexuality, but also, as one critic puts it, “[its] narrative loopholes [and] unconvincing plot twists.” 1983: Lesbian playwright Jane Chambers (A Late Snow, Last Summer at Bluefish Cove) dies of a brain tumor at the age of … Read More

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