Blogs Oct 12, 2011 at 7:20 am


RIP, Dr. Kameny. What a hero. Thanks for posting it here.
Courageous. A hero for freedom. RIP.
He was one of the founders of the Mattachine Society of Washington, DC in 1961. The Rainbow History Project is having a 50 year celebration of the event tomorrow where he was scheduled to speak. It is going on in his memory.

He has said his greatest achievement was coining the phrase "Gay is Good". He brought militancy to the movement that in it's early years was more about listening to experts on homosexuality tell people why they were sick. He saw being gay as just one aspect of a person like their skin color, religion, sex, or religion. And gay people were discriminated against because of this one characteristic just as other groups were. This idea was revolutionary. It was his ideas that influenced other activists combined with his iron will and tireless energy in the pursuit of justice.
Truly a national treasure;I can't wait to see his life in 'protest signs, and letters' at the Smithsonian,depicting our struggle alongside the Civil Rights movement. RIP Frank Kameny
I don't think Kameny founded the Mattachine Society in Los Angeles in 1950; he founded the Washington, DC branch in 1961. He is not mentioned in the histories I have seen of the Los Angeles group, which was founded by Harry Hay, Rudi Gernreich, Dale Jennings, Bob Hull, Chuck Rowland, Stan Witt, Paul Bernard, Konrad Stevens, and James Gruber (the last, who died this last March).

But that group had a more social function, and was secretive; the Washington group was the first to really come out and take on political advocacy. Kameny's role in legal and governmental protections for gay rights is massive; he coined the "Gay is Good" slogan, and is responsible for getting homosexuality removed as a psychological disorder from the American Psychiatric Association's list.
He was fired from WWII for being gay?
What an amazing life, and how wonderful that he lived long enough to see the acceptance of gays by the military.
Dude was an astronomer. Gay scientists rock!!
Statue on the National Mall.
A hero of mine for more than 20 years (almost 25 years, actually). So courageous.
Thank you, DAN.
I presented a paper recently on the lesbian homophile movement, but Kameny's contributions toward direct action were too great to omit. His courage (and that of all homophile activists) should not be forgotten.
didnt know you ,didnt meet you,never seen you ,never heard you,but thanks for making my life a lot more acceptable to others,RIP, Im Sparticus.!!!!!!!
I'm a straight guy who grew up in Washington, DC in the 50's and 60's. Frank Kameny was the public face of the homosexual (as it was then called) community in DC during that time. He spoke at the University of Maryland while I was there (late 60's) and came across as an utterly reasonable, decent man, quite unlike the stereotypes of homosexuality that were all the "knowledge" we had back then. (You may not recall that a Mississippi Congressman and an LBJ aid had to resign after being caught in separate gay sex incidents.) When I came back from Vietnam (having served with gay men), I worked in the Federal government in an agency where many of my peers were openly gay (although it still may have been a crime or firing offense in 1972). Many of these guys had also served in the military. I believe that Frank Kameny's constant, and a bit wonkish, presence in DC political life made a huge difference in making it possible for these men to be open about themselves. Knowing them made a huge difference in my own attitudes. I revere Mr. Kameny and mourn his passing.

Please wait...

Comments are closed.

Commenting on this item is available only to members of the site. You can sign in here or create an account here.

Add a comment

By posting this comment, you are agreeing to our Terms of Use.