Sunday, June 25, 2006

Anniversary of Stonewall riots mark Gay Pride Weekend

It will be 37 years this week since the Stonewall riots in New York on June 28th and the beginning of the contemporary gay rights movement. The weekend is commemorated as Gay Pride weekend and is marked in many cities with parades.

It was in the early morning hours that police raided the Stonewall, a small gay bar in Greenwich Village. This was a pretty routine activity for the police and gay men and lesbian had more or less come to accept this harassment as the price to pay for who they were. However, this evening was different. The patrons fought back. The riot was quelled but the evening of the 28th brought more rioting. After that evening demonstrations took place followed by new organizations with the purpose of fighting for the rights of sexual minorities. There were many twists and turns in the movement to come but clearly June 28, 1969 marked a turning point in the consciousness of LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) people.

You can read a reminiscence of Gay Pride weekend here.

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