September 20 in LGBTQ History

1958: In New York City, lesbians, including Barbara Gittings, hold the first Daughters of Bilitis New York meeting at the offices of the Mattachine Society of New York. The chapter is the first lesbian organization on the East Coast.

1973: In Houston, Billie Jean King defeats “male chauvinist” Bobby Riggs in tennis’ “Battle of the Sexes”

1996: In Saudi Arabia, 24 Filipino workers receive the first 50 lashes of their 200-lash sentence for alleged “homosexual behavior.” Despite protests from Amnesty International, the government goes ahead with the sentence and later deports the workers.

2011: Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, the law which, since 1993, has excluded LGBTQ people from serving openly in the United States military, expires nine months after it was legislatively repealed. The United States Army is the first branch of the military to announce officially that the exclusionary policy is over.

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