April 1 in LGBTQ History

1970: The Advocate estimates there are approximately 6,817,000 gay men and lesbians living in the United States.

1971: The French leftist newspaper, Tout, edited by Jean-Paul Sartre, calls for complete  sexual liberation in France, including the right of individuals to be freely and openly homosexual.  French police begin massive seizures of the publication on the grounds that it is “an outrage to public morals.”

1972: Delaware decriminalizes consensual homosexual acts between adults.

1981: Ebony magazine runs a feature article by Howard University’s Dr. June Dobbs Butts, which asks the question, “Is Homosexuality a Threat to the Black Family?”, concluding that it is not.  Moreover, the article seeks to dispel the myth that whites somehow “introduced” homosexuality into the black community to weaken and destroy it.

1985: The Harvey Milk School, a city-funded high school for LGBT teenagers in New York City, begins classes in a Greenwich Village church, with an initial enrollment of twenty students.

1985: Governor Toney Anaya of New Mexico issues an executive order banning public-sector sexual orientation discrimination.

1998: Coretta Scott King, widow of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr., calls on the civil rights community to join the struggle against homophobia. She receives criticism from members of the black civil rights movement for comparing civil rights to gay rights.

2001: In the Netherlands, legislation allowing same-sex marriage goes into effect, making it the first country to extend full marriage rights to same-sex couples.

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