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What A Difference A Gay Makes
by Sukie de la Croix
2001-09-05

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Sept. 2-8

1996

U.S.: The U.S Senate passes, by a vote of 85-14, the Defense of Marriage Act, aimed at defining marriage as a union between one man and one woman. * The Log Cabin Republicans come out in support of Bob Dole and Jack Kemp, making them the first national gay group to endorse a Republican presidential ticket. * At the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association in Miami, convention chairman Jeffrey Newman kicks off the three-day event by saying: "Today, Anita Bryant is but an unemployed lounge singer in the Midwest and the NLGJA convention is here in Miami." * In Tempe, Ariz., Mayor Neil Giuliano announces that he is gay, explaining that he took the step because he feared an anti-gay resident was planning to disclose his homosexuality at a city council meeting. * The HRC launches a projected $220,000 "independent expenditure" campaign targeting North Carolina's undecided and swing voters in an attempt to defeat homophobic U.S. Sen. Jesse Helms. * The Philadelphia Federation of Teachers agrees to include domestic-partnership benefits as a bargaining demand in contract negotiations with the school district, but gay teachers say they are skeptical about its seriousness.

1991

U.S.: The American Family Association targets a safe-sex film called Jesus Christ Condom for censure. An actor portraying Jesus says: " Make sure your second coming is a safe one, use condoms." * The National Center for Lesbian Rights and the Bay Area Lawyers for Individual Freedom, an association of gay and lesbian attorneys, both announce their opposition to the appointment of Bush nominee Clarence Thomas to the Supreme Court. * The New York chapter of the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation names Ellen Carton as its new executive director. * Stage, film and TV actor Brad Davis dies of AIDS at age 41. * Japan: At a conference held in Yokohama, Amnesty International resolves to work to help persons imprisoned for consensual same-sex acts between adults or simply on account of their sexual orientation.

1986

U.S.: Urvashi Vaid takes over as the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force's director of public affairs. Vaid replaces Ron Najman. * The U.S. Senate votes to give the National Cancer Institute an extra $50,000 to provide the experimental drug AZT to 10,000 people with AIDS. * The NGLTF announce the release of a new publication called Dealing With Violence: A Guide for Gay and Lesbian People. * The U.S. Army dismisses eight military policewomen, stationed at West Point, for homosexuality, after a summer of investigations. * Dominican Republic: In Santo Domingo, the government cracks down on gay establishments with charges ranging from building and health code violations to prostitution and drugs. By the end of September 1986, all gay business in the city are closed.

1981

U.S.: The 5th biennial international convention of Dignity Inc., the organization for gay Roman Catholics, takes place at the Franklin Plaza Hotel in Philadelphia. * The Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders, Inc., a non-profit public interest law firm, publishes the first edition of its National Lesbian and Gay Attorneys' Referral Directory. * Margot Karle, president and former legal director of the Lambda Legal Defense and Education Fund, is killed in an "apparent" accident. Karle died of a shotgun wound at her summer house in East Hampton. * A Houston police officer charged with negligent homicide in the June 1980 shooting death of Gay Political Caucus secretary Fred Paez, is acquitted. The officer, Kevin M. McCoy, 26, testified that Paez, 27, offered to fellate him and another officer. McCoy said he tried to arrest Paez, who struggled with him, accidentally causing the gun to go off.


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