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Gay History – August 24, 1970: the New York Times Runs Front Page Story On “Homosexuals in Revolt”

On August 24, 1970:  A little over a year after the Stonewall riots The New York Times ran a front page story called “Homosexuals in Revolt”. The article reports “a new mood now taking hold among the nation’s homosexuals. In growing numbers they are publicly identifying themselves as homosexuals, taking a measure of pride in that identity and seeking militantly to end what they see as society’s persecution of them.”

The article is a snapshot of the time and while mostly positive did play up being gay as a ” psychiatric illness”.

This new attitude has its critics, both among “straights” and among homosexuals. Many doctors believe that, while homosexuals should have full legal rights, “gay” is not necessarily “good.” Dr. Lionel Ovesey, a professor of clinical psychiatry at Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, said:

“Homosexuality is a psychiatric or emotional illness. think it’s a good thing if someone can be cured of it because it’s so difficult for a homosexual to find happiness in our society. It’s possible that this movement could consolidate the illness in some people, especially among young people who are still teetering on the brink.”

You can read the FULL New York Times article Homosexuals in Revolt by clicking this link.

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Will Kohler

Will Kohler is one of America's best known LGBT historians, He is also a a accredited journalist and the 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 on such notable media venues as BBC News, CNN, MSNBC, The Washington Post, The Daily Wall Street Journal, Hollywood Reporter, and Raw Story. Back2Stonewall has been recently added to the Library of Congress' LGBTQ+ Studies Web Archive. Mr. Kohler is available for comment, interviews and lectures on LGBT History. Contact: Will@Back2Stonewall.com

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