With reports from hundreds of sub-Saharan African locales of male-male sexual relations and from about fifty of female-female sexual relations, it is clear that same-sex sexual relations existed in traditional African societies, though varying in forms and in the degree of public acceptance
The confrontations between police and demonstrators at the Stonewall Inn in New York City the weekend of June 27-29, 1969 mark the beginning of the modern glbtq movement for equal rights.
A social role for individuals who crossed or mixed male and female characteristics was one of the most widely distributed institutions of native North America.
The sexual revolution of post-World War II America changed sexual and gender roles profoundly.
Mixed-orientation marriages--those in which one partner is straight and the other is gay or lesbian--often end in divorce, but such an ending is not inevitable.
"Leather" is a blanket term for a large array of sexual preferences, identities, relationship structures, and social organizations loosely tied together by the thread of what is conventionally understood as sadomasochistic sex.
Since the late nineteenth century, transgendered people have advocated legal and social reforms that would ameliorate the kinds of oppression and discrimination they suffer.
Formed soon after the Stonewall Riots of 1969, the short-lived but influential Gay Liberation Front brought a new militancy to the movement that became known as gay liberation.
As widely expected, the French Senate on April 12, 2013 approved, on a show of hands, a bill that would extend marriage and adoption rights to same-sex couples. The vote came after Senators had earlier approved the key provisions on a 179-157 tally. Somewhat surprisingly, however, after the approval the government announced that the bill will return to the National Assembly, which approved it in February by a 329-229 margin, for a final vote on Wednesday, April 17, 2013, far earlier than the expected date of May 20, 2013. The fast-tracking of the bill has delighted supporters and angered opponents.
As Michael Lavers reports in the Washington Blade, Justice Minister Christiane Taubira, who testified in support of the proposal backed by President François Hollande in both the Senate and the National Assembly, applauded the senators who voted for the bill, as did Paris Mayor Bertrand Delanoë.
Delanoë, who is gay, said in a written statement, "It is with great satisfaction that I salute the Senate's adoption of the 'marriage for all' bill."
However, the decision to accelerate final consideration of the bill was greeted with outrage by the opponents of the bill, who have steadily escalated their rhetoric during the debate.
Indeed, it is believed that the opponents' violent rhetoric, which has led to an increase of homophobic verbal and physical attacks, contributed to the decision to fast-track the final vote.
As Charles Roncier, an assistant editor-in-chief for the website VIH.org, told the Washington Blade, that even as the opponents of marriage equality kept insisting that they are not homophobic their discourse became more and more obviously homophobic.
Roncier said that same-sex couples are "excited" by the prospect that they may be able to marry in France as early as next month.
"We used to be the minority who used to fight for our rights and for the first time I witnessed my minority being defended by the government and the majority of French people and against another minority who were against us," he told the Blade. "It was very new and very touching."
However, the French English-language news site The Local reports that the opponents of marriage equality have reacted to the news that the final vote will be taken so quickly with anger and yet more violent rhetoric, including threats.
Frigide Barjot, leader of the anti-marriage equality movement Manif pour tous (Demo for all), called the decision "a disgrace. The French people don't want this law, and what do they do? They speed up its passage." He added ominously, "Hollande wants blood, and he will get it."
Centre-right UMP deputy Christian Jacob said that by accelerating the bill's now almost certain passage into law, "the President of the Republic is risking a violent confrontation with the French people," while fellow UMP deputy Hervé Mariton denounced the move as "an incitement to civil war."
The rhetoric used by Barjot et al. has almost certainly contributed to the rise in homophobic incidents in France, as epitomized by the bruised and battered face of Wilfred de Bruijn, who was beaten unconscious near his home in central Paris on April 7, 2013. De Bruijn's beating and his emergence as the public face of homophobia in France is discussed here.
In France, as in the United States, the opponents of equal rights have blood on their hands.
In the video below, BBC World Wide news reports on the Senate vote.