“DEFEAT THE BRIGGS INITIATIVE,” demonstrators in San Francisco…

“DEFEAT THE BRIGGS INITIATIVE,” demonstrators in San Francisco react to the rejection of Eugene, Oregon’s gay rights amendment, May 23, 1978. Photo © Daniel Nicoletta, whose amazing book “LGBT San Francisco” (@lgbtsanfrancisco) is available for pre-order now.
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On May 23, 1978, thirty-nine years ago today, the typically liberal stronghold of Eugene, Oregon gave Anita Bryant’s Save Our Children campaign another resounding anti-queer victory, as voters there rejected a gay rights amendment to the city’s human rights ordinance.
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The vote, which turned out to be the closest of the four votes on gay rights ordinances to date, was nonetheless decisive: 22,898 to 13,427.
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That night, Bryant praised “the Christian public and all the citizens of Eugene who worked and voted against legalized immorality.” She encouraged her supporters to “continue to reach out in Godly love to all homosexuals who want deliverance, while opposing at the threshold every attempt of the militant homosexuals to represent their lifestyle as ‘normal’ and to impose it on us and our children.”
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From there, all eyes turned to California, where the fight over the Briggs Initiative (which effectively would have banned self-identifying LGBTQs and their allies from working in public schools) took on even greater significance in the wake of the Eugene vote. #lgbthistory #HavePrideInHistory #DanielNicoletta #Resist