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Cops In Middle of Early Gay Internecine Jockeying

Cops In Middle of Early Gay Internecine Jockeying

BY DUNCAN OSBORNE | In early 1970, Dick Leitsch was feeling the pressure of an emerging radical faction that was replacing the Mattachine Society of New York (MSNY) and other political groups that held significant roles in the LGBTQ movement since the ‘50s. Leitsch, who had been an MSNY officer since 1965 and was a force […]

History Still Very Much Resonates Today

BY ALLEN ROSKOFF | Having recently seen “Angels in America” on Broadway made me recall my own brushes with Roy Cohn — a notoriously evil character in Tony Kushner’s magnificent play and, of course, in real life. In the late 1970s, Roy was having dinner with a young gay guy at the gay Uncle Charlie’s Restaurant […]

Corruption, Before & After Stonewall

Corruption, Before & After Stonewall

BY DUNCAN OSBORNE | Steve Wolf, the editor of a quarterly publication produced by the Homophile Union of Boston, and his partner came to New York City in June 1971 and made two visits to The Firehouse, the headquarters of the Gay Activist Alliance (GAA) that opened the month before. In a July 1971 letter that […]

Highlighting Key Moments in City’s LGBTQ Past

Highlighting Key Moments in City’s LGBTQ Past

BY DUNCAN OSBORNE | While the 1969 riots that began as the result of a police raid at the Stonewall Inn are well known as marking the start of the modern LGBTQ rights movement, what is less well known is that the deputy inspector who led that raid had busted the Mafia-run bar just three days […]

Radical Visions, Tangible Wins

Radical Visions, Tangible Wins

BY DUNCAN OSBORNE | Historian Martin Duberman asks a provocative question in his soon to be released book, “Has the Gay Movement Failed?” To use the construct that Duberman employs in exploring this question, which is that broadly speaking the movement is divided between radicals, as represented by the early 1970s Gay Liberation Front (GLF) and […]

NYPD Surveillance on Early LGBTQ Activism Bared

NYPD Surveillance on Early LGBTQ Activism Bared

BY DUNCAN OSBORNE | As activists were gathering in the West Village in 1970 for the first march to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall riots that mark the start of the modern LGBTQ rights movement, they were not alone. The NYPD was nearby surreptitiously taking pictures and film of New York City’s first Pride March. Some of […]

Ron Gold, Pioneer in Challenging Sickness Label, Dies

Ron Gold, Pioneer in Challenging Sickness Label, Dies

BY ANDY HUMM | Ron Gold, who told a committee of shrinks, “Stop it, you’re making me sick!,” in a 1973 speech as part of the successful campaign to get the American Psychiatric Association (APA) to remove homosexuality from their Index of Mental Disorders, died at his East Village home May 1 at the age […]

A Radical Voice Rekindles the Spirit of June 1969

A Radical Voice Rekindles the Spirit of June 1969

Remarks from Martha Shelley, a participant in the Stonewall Rebellion and a founder of the Gay Liberation Front, at the September 20 press conference announcing plans to press for creation of a national park anchored on the vicinity of the Christopher Street bar at the heart of the action in June 1969: I’m Martha Shelley and […]

Nailing the Riots, But Not Their Meaning

Nailing the Riots, But Not Their Meaning

BY STEVE ERICKSON | Generally, trailers are intended to promote films and get people excited about them. The release of the trailer for Roland Emmerich’s “Stonewall” had the exact opposite effect. It depicted the milieu around the Stonewall Inn in the late ‘60s as 90 percent white, with few visible drag queens. The release of a […]

I Am a Wedding (In Camera)

I Am a Wedding (In Camera)

BY DAVID EHRENSTEIN | On February 25 at 11:30 a.m., after 43 years of intimate cohabitation, Bill Reed and I were married at Beverly Hills City Hall. Judge Marjorie Harris, a polished, poised, and delightful woman who has married a number of same-sex couples since Proposition 8 was overturned in 2013, presided. Since marriage is a […]

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