March 20 in LGBTQ History

1961: The United States Supreme Court denies certiorari to Frank Kameny’s petition to review the legality of his firing by the United States Army’s Map Service in 1957, bringing his four-year legal battle to a close.

1970: Twenty-three year old David Bowie marries nineteen year old American Mary Angela Barnett. A few years later, Bowie explains how they met, “Angela and I knew each other because we were both going out with the same man.”  Angie Bowie went on to a career in Hollywood, though the two divorced in 1980.

1978: The San Francisco Board of Supervisor passes what is described as “the most stringent gay rights law in the country.”  Only one of the eleven supervisors — Dan White — votes against the ordinance.

1986: After fourteen years the New York City Council finally passes a gay rights ordinance with a vote of 21 to 14.  Mayor Ed Koch tells reporters, “The sky is not going to fall.  There isn’t going to be any dramatic change in the life of this city.”

2004: A lesbian minister in Bothell, Washington, is acquitted by a Methodist church jury of violating church rules.

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