Drunk History Falls For The Hype and Wrongly Recaps The Stonewall Riots, Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera

Drunk History Falls For The Hype and Wrongly Recaps The Stonewall Riots, Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera


Crissle West — writer, comedian, and co-host of The Read podcast — popped by Comedy Central’s Drunk History this week to dutifully drain a few glasses of boozer and retell the story of the Stonewall Riots, and Marsha. P. Johnson’s involvement in it and got it all wrong, basically just telling the same tired trans-activists narrative lie of that fateful evening on June 28, 1969.

West’s version of the same old lies and rewriting of history by trans-activists with an agenda to steal Stonewall from the gay men and lesbians and put trans-people as the stars of this historical event when in actuality they were only a small part of the supporting cast.

FACT:  Marsha Johnson was homeless because she had mental health problems. She suffered psychotic breaks and a multiple personality disorder. And while loved by many was actually banned from many of the gay bars in the Village.

FACT:  She was not a customer at the Stonewall. She wasn’t inside the Stonewall. Neither was Sylvia Rivera. The only person who ever said Sylvia Rivera was inside the bar was Rivera herself and not one confirmed patron ever saw her of Johnson in the bar.

FACT:  Johnson  did not “spark” the riots. She did not throw a shot glass inside the Stonewall. No one did. And she did not give a speech. In her own words she was not near the bar when the riot started.  There was no one person who “sparked” the riot, although the closest candidate would be a lesbian who resisted being hustled into a police car. A lesbian. Not a crossdresser. Not a transgender.

FACT:  The Stonewall riots were 3 nights, not 2.

FACT:  Gay youth did not have access to bars and dance clubs as the video claims. In fact, there was a group of homeless white and Latino gay kids living on the street near the Stonewall and they – not transsexuals or transgenders – were the ones who fought most fiercely.

FACT:  The rioters were overwhelmingly gay male. They were largely white (reflecting the makeup of NYC in 1969), but there was substantial Latino and African American participation. There were only a tiny number of crossdressers at Stonewall, in the range of 2-4, and Johnson was the only transgender present. This is out of a cumulative 3-night crowd of 2000. There were far more heterosexual rioters at Stonewall than crossdressers or transgenders.

Drunk history?  More like history on CRACK.

You can watch the bullshit below or click on THIS LINK and learn about the REAL HISTORY of the Stonewall Riots.



Will Kohler

Will Kohler is a noted LGBT historian, writer, blogger and owner of Back2Stonewall.com. A longtime gay activist, Will fought on the front lines of the AIDS epidemic with ACT-UP and continues fighting today for LGBT acceptance and full equality. Will’s work has been referenced in notable media venues as MSNBC and BBC News, The Washington Post, The Advocate, The Daily Beast, Hollywood Reporter, Raw Story, and The Huffington Post

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3 Responses

  1. Kate says:

    I’d be more inclined to listen to what you had to say if 1) you’d cite sources instead of just screaming FACT every sentence, and 2) were knowledgeable about how to use trans terminology. “Transgenders” is not a word, and if it were it’s not a noun. You’re supposed to be a “noted” LGBT historian but are confused by simple language. Doesn’t really make you seem like a reliable source.

    Oh, and by the way, who is it that has noted you?

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