The Daily Agenda for Saturday, June 29

Jim Burroway

June 29th, 2013

TODAY’S AGENDA:
Pride Celebrations This Weekend: Albuquerque, NM; Bangor, ME; Barcelona, Spain; Cheyenne, WY; Chicago, IL; Cincinnati, OHCleveland, OH; Doncaster, UK; Dublin, Ireland; Durban, South AfricaFinnmark, Norway; Harlem, NY; Helsinki, Finland; Houston, TX; Istanbul, Turkey; Lexington, KY; London, UK; London, UK (Black Pride); Malmö, Sweden; México, DF, México; Oslo, Norway; Paris, France; Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN; New York, NY; Oslo, Norway; St. Louis, Mo; St. Petersburg, FL; Salem, MASan Antonio, TX; San Francisco, CA; San José, Costa Rica; Sardinia, ItalySeattle, WA; Swansea, UK; Toronto, ONUtrecht, Netherlands; Valencia, Spain; VästerÃ¥s, Sweden.

Other Events This Weekend: Durban Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, Durban, South Africa; Frameline 37 Film Festival, San Francisco, CA; Pink Dot Festival, Singapore; Canadian Rockies International Rodeo, Strathmore, AB.

TODAY’S BIRTHDAY:
Henry Gerber: 1892. Pro-gay activism in the U.S goes back a very long way, far longer than most realize. Henry Gerber, a Bavarian immigrant to Chicago, served in the U.S. Army’s occupation of Germany following World War I, where he came in contact with the growing German gay rights movement. He read up on German homophile magazines and came in contact with Magnus Hirschfeld’s Scientific-Humanitarian Committee, the first organization in the world working to advance gay rights. When Gerber returned to the U.S. he founded the Society for Human Rights (SHR) in 1924. With an African-American clergyman named John T. Graves as president, SHR is believed to be America’s first gay rights organization. Gerber also founded Friendship and Freedom, the first known American gay publication.

SHR didn’t last very long. The wife of the group’s vice president denounced Gerber and his associates to police, calling them “degenerates.” In July, 1925, police arrested Gerber, Graves and two others as newspaper headlines screamed “Strange Sex Cult Exposed.” Gerber was tried three times, but the charges were eventually dismissed. He was nevertheless ruined, jobless and drained of his life savings. He continued writing about gay rights, sometimes under his own name and sometimes under a pseudonym. He died on New Year’s Eve in 1972 at the age of 80, having lived long enough to see gay rights advocacy take on a new vibrancy in the 1950s and 1960s, culminating in an explosion of advocacy and pride after the Stonewall Rebellion of 1969.

If you know of something that belongs on the agenda, please send it here. Don’t forget to include the basics: who, what, when, where, and URL (if available).

And feel free to consider this your open thread for the day. What’s happening in your world?

jpeckjr

June 29th, 2013

I hope someone in some Pride parade this weekend carries a sign that says “Thank you Henry Gerber!”

Tom Spinella

June 29th, 2013

In Chicago, we remember Henry Gerber with the Gerber-Hart Library. Happy Birthday and thank you, Henry!

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