Rather than editorialize on a new topic today, I would like to take a moment to reply to some criticism I've seen in a few places about my Wednesday post (correction: the post in question was written Wednesday, not Monday as original listed), which took NPR correspondent Liz Halloran to task over her revisionist history of the Stonewall Riots.
There are some (presumably) gay people who felt that I overreacted to Ms. Halloran and NPR cutting drag queens, trans* women, and non-conformist gays out of the Stonewall narrative. Some people feel that the deliberate de-emphasis and/or erasure of the aforementioned members of our community is a reasonable price to pay in exchange for making our civil rights history better known and accepted. Additionally there's been some argument is that using the word "gay" rather than "LGBT" is a useful, and socially advantageous shorthand, which works better than more inclusive alternatives when addressing a mainstream audience.
In response I have this to say: These people aren't "footnotes" to the Stonewall story. They were the driving force, the protagonists if you will, of what has come to be seen as a pivotal moment in our history. Leaving them/us on the cutting room floor of history to further a mainstream, marriage & conformity-focused agenda is exploitive, not to mention denigrating to all our forebears who have fought for the rights of LGBT/GSM people, regardless of whether they fought in the streets, courtrooms, media, or around the dinner table.
Obviously in a community as diverse as ours, consensus as to what our objectives are, or should be, not to mention how to pursue those objectives most effectively, will likely always remain elusive. But if we cannot even agree on the fundamental truths of our history, we simply cannot, as a movement, have a future.
As of this time NPR has not responded to requests for comment, but I certainly hope that they will.
On a lighter note, having used a Stonewall picture on Monday, I chose today's picture of Reddit user nessaluvs269, because according to her recent post, it was taken just before the National Equality March.
And now, here's what you need to know today: