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.
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.
The sexual revolution of post-World War II America changed sexual and gender roles profoundly.
"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.
Although best known for her crusade for women's suffrage, Susan B. Anthony spoke out on a range of feminist issues.
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
Androgyny, a psychological blending of gender traits, has long been embraced by strong women, soft men, members of queer communities, and others who do not easily fit into traditionally defined gender categories.
A cultural crossroads between Asia and Europe, Russia has a long, rich, and often violent heritage of varied influences and stark confrontations in regard to its patterns of same-sex love.
Still from a protest video by allout.org.
The passage of an anti-gay law by St. Petersburg's Parliament has sparked a call for a boycott of the city and other Russian destinations. More specifically, the international activist organization AllOut.org has called for tourists to boycott Russia's most popular tourist destination.
The New York Times reports that the February 29, 2012 passage by St. Petersburg's Parliament of a law aimed at eliminating what its backers call "progaganda" in favor of homosexuality has aroused fears of an impending witch hunt aimed at gay people.
The St. Petersburg law is similar to legislation passed elsewhere in Russia, including Arkhangelsk and Ryazan, and to proposals in the federal legislature. It appears to be a reaction to demands by gay rights groups, particularly in St. Petersburg and Moscow, for equal rights, and to agitation from Russia's vehemently homophobic Orthodox Church to vilify gay people.
Under St. Petersburg's new law, which passed the legislature on a vote of 29 to 5, "public actions directed at the propaganda of sodomy, lesbianism, bisexuality and transgenderism among minors" will be punishable with fines of up to $17,000. The law defines propaganda of homosexuality as "the targeted and uncontrolled dissemination of generally accessible information capable of harming the health and moral and spiritual development of minors," particularly that which could create "a distorted impression" of "marital relations."
Igor Kochetkov, the head of the Russian L.G.B.T. Network, a rights group based in St. Petersburg, called the premise of the law "absurd."
"You can also adopt a law against turning off the light of the sun, but no one has the ability to do this," Mr. Kochetkov said. "Even if someone wanted to, no amount of propaganda is going to turn a heterosexual gay."
"This is a law that can be used, and will be used, to conduct searches of organizations and prevent public actions," he said. "Most importantly, it will be used for official propaganda. Officially homosexuality will be considered illegal, something incorrect and something that cannot be discussed with children. It will create a negative atmosphere in society around gays and lesbians as well as our organizations."
International human rights groups and Western governments had urged legislators not to pass the law, and a few opposition groups in Russia have condemned it.
"I consider this law a provocation intended to divide society over a question that could have been used to teach people understanding," Aleksandr Korbinsky, an opposition member of St. Petersburg's Parliament who voted against the measure, said on Ekho Moskvy radio.
The law is expected to be signed into law by St. Petersburg's governor.
In response to the law, the activist group AllOut.org has issued a powerful video calling for a boycott of St. Petersburg, Russia's most popular tourist destination. The video is set to soaring music by Russia's most famous gay composer, Pyotr Ilich Tchaicovsky.
All Out, which began operations in 2011, is committed to building a truly global community able to respond to moments of crisis and opportunity to advance the lives and freedoms of glbtq people everywhere.
The organization runs multilingual real-time campaigns to inform, educate, and engage the public. It has focused on such issues as the "Kill the Gays" bill in Uganda, homophobic and transphobic violence in Brazil, and the sterilization requirement to change gender identity on official documents in Sweden.
Its goal is to help the global glbtq movement "achieve in 10 years what might take 30 or more years to accomplish based on current global trends, and to instigate the kinds of fresh and dynamic popular discussions around diversity and LGBT equality that improve and enrich the lives of people everywhere."
The video below eloquently explains the goals of AllOut.org.