Saturday, August 28, 2010

This Weekend in Wingnuttery



Sunday, August 22, 2010

This Week in Gay History

August 22-25, 1968

At the Democratic Party National Convention in Chicago, a sub-convention of gay rights groups coalesced under the moniker of the North American Conference of Homophile Organizations (NACHO) met to create a Homosexual Bill of Rights and coined the slogan "Gay is Good," an homage to the Black Power slogan "Black is Beautiful."

Their non-violent gathering and meetings were greatly overshadowed by the large number of leftist anti-war groups coalescing in concert with the Youth International Party (Yippies) and other more “demonstrative” characters. Crapaud was there attending a college social fraternity annual gathering in Evanston, but did just barely escape being tear-gassed downtown one evening when he took a wrong turn on a walking tour. It was the first time I ever saw machine gun emplacements and armed soldiers on the street corners of an American city.

A number of lesbian organizations, still concerned over the lack of attention being paid to their issues, refused to participate. Daughters of Bilitis president Rita LaPorte compared the relationship between NACHO and DOB to a husband and wife. Heterosexual women, she argued, dissipated their energy through their marriages; similarly, lesbians risked dissipating their energy should DOB become a surrogate "wife" to what she perceived as the male-centered NACHO.

NACHO held national conferences in 1969 and 1970, but faded in importance with the rise of the Gay Liberation Front and others becoming more radicalized after Stonewall.