Tuesday, November 27, 2012

In Remembrance of Harvey Milk

Gay rights activist and San Francisco Supervisor Harvey Milk was gunned down on this day at San Francisco City Hall in 1978.  His assailant was fellow Supervisor Dan White who also shot and killed mayor George Moscone.  I was only ten years old at the time, but I was a quirky kid in that I paid attention to the news, and so I did hear about it even as I played with Legos on the living room floor.  It was shocking, and even more shocking days later when we'd hear that it was the Twinkies that made Dan White do it.

Milk, who was a firebrand, once said, "If a bullet should enter my brain, let that bullet destroy every closet door."  It may not have destroyed every closet door, but his life, his passion, and his entry into the political arena, makes him one of the many saints of our LGBT civil rights struggle that has led to U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin, as well as countless other openly-gay elected officials.  How sweet it is to know that the state who produced the hate-filled Save Our Children campaign of Anita Bryant now has two openly-gay state representatives!

"And the young gay people in the Altoona, Pennsylvanias and the Richmond, Minnesotas who are coming out and hear Anita Bryant on television and her story. The only thing they have to look forward to is hope. And you have to give them hope. Hope for a better world, hope for a better tomorrow, hope for a better place to come to if the pressures at home are too great. Hope that all will be all right."--Harvey Milk, March 10, 1978.

Hope is out there, it's very visible.  Let's be brave and embrace it!

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