California conservatives were outraged in 1966 when the state Board of Education adopted a new junior high school history textbook. The book's inclusive treatment of the civil rights movement and influential black Americans would indoctrinate students, undermine religious values and politicize the curriculum, they said.
Forty-five years later, gay rights advocates say similar arguments are being advanced to defeat a bill that would make the state the first to require the teaching of gay history in public schools. The California Senate approved the landmark measure last week, but it needs to clear the Democrat-controlled Assembly and Gov. Jerry Brown's desk.Our stories and our history have been stolen from our youth and have been erased from the American consciousness. Most Americans think the gay rights movement is something new and don't know anything about what happened at Stonewall or why we celebrate pride Month in June.
Queer kids are bullied and victimized in their homes, neighborhoods, schools and their churches. They don't know their own history of the brave members of their community that came before them. Ostracized by their peers and with nowhere to turn, is it any wonder that LGBT kids sometimes take their own lives?
On Monday, April 25th the PBS program American Experience will air the documentary "Stonewall Uprising".
"When police raided the Stonewall Inn, a popular gay bar in the Greenwich Village section of New York City on June 28, 1969, the street erupted into violent protests that lasted for the next six days. The Stonewall riots, as they came to be known, marked a major turning point in the modern gay civil rights movement in the United States and around the world."Clear your calendar, set your Tivo, phone the neighbors and wake the kids. You don't want to miss this.
*A tip of the hat to Best Gay News Magazine for the heads up on this.