Starting at Stonewall: The Gay Rights Movement

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Starting at Stonewall: The Gay Rights Movement


The Stonewall riot that took place at the Stonewall Inn in New York in 1969 fostered the gay rights movement that had hardly seen any progress for a long time. However, after the incident, the movement has experienced certain development. This topic was chosen for the discussion the gay rights movement has always been something that interests me. I always felt that each ought to have equal rights as we are all equal. Furthermore, I wanted to learn more about the topic as I have never actually known anything about the gay rights movement nor the leaders who have contributed to its impact to date. Along with that, gay marriage was passed in all the 50 states in the United States, which is a sign of great advancement in the movement. The paper aims to show how the riot at the Stonewall Inn in New York in 1969 contributed to the development of the gay rights movement and explain the reasons of the movement’s long time stagnation and demonstrate its progress in the last 40 years.

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Historical Investigation of the Gay Civil Liberties Interest Group

In 1950s-1960s, there was the homophile association that remained diminutive and reasonably marginalized. The implication of the Stonewall police insurrection is the administration, police pestering and inquiry of the gay citizens that started in the 1940s. It was until the closing stages of the 1960s that the growth of activism on homosexual as an essential entity arose. In the United States, the Stonewall uprising is an occasion that is first and foremost looked at as a channel for the gay group of people to render their message to the world. The insurgence encouraged the gay individuals all through the state to sketch in support of the gay privileges (Hall, 2010). After the rebellion, in the following two years, gay assemblages in most of the major cities were created.

The riot that happened at the Stonewall Inn illustrates that the clienteles clashed back against what had turned out to be a regular, city-sanctioned cruelty by the law enforcement service. In 1969, the gay group of people declined to acknowledge the status quo of coercion and stood up for their constitutional rights. The occasion became the classical flashpoint that ignited the long and rising encounter towards maintaining of the gay society. Essentially, it is an incident that is considered to be crucial for contribution to the rights of the gay population of the current age. The Stonewall Inn acts as a testament to the homosexual humanity as it is where the entire struggle started.

During the fight, many people were arrested, but it did not deter the gay community as they fought back. Apparently, their resistance helped them reach the aim they had. Their struggle can be described as a successful journey towards equality and freedom. The resistance initiated at Stonewall Inn provided the background for the establishment of gay political organizations that proliferated in the 1970s and 1980s in the United States. One of the achievements was the fact that gay activists won support from the Democratic Party in 1980 (Franke-Ruta, 2013). It is during 1980 that the party opted to add to its platform a nondiscrimination clause plank including sexual orientation.

The outcome of Democrat’s approach led to the National Coming Out Day establishment in the United States. The impact of Stonewall is essential as it has been used by political parties to reach their requirements from the minority community. Furthermore, the events that took place where government officials such as Jerry DeGrieck and Nancy Wechsler, which is another positive change for the gay community. The examples of Kathy Kozachenko who run for office in 1974 and won elections in 1974, and American gay activist Harvey Milk who was also elected in 1977 demonstrate the success of the gay rights movement. In addition, in 1998, Tammy Baldwin became the first openly gay politician elected to the US House of Representatives and in 2012, to US Senate.

The evaluation of the Stonewall impact on the gay movement is beneficial because it shows how the whole process has evolved. Furthermore, the exploration entails that it has not been easy because of either fear of the police or the reaction of family members. The contents of the evaluation elaborate that despite the hard situations, the gay community continued the fight, which is the reason they are where they are now. It took sacrifices and hard choices for the gay community to reach where they are, but the Stonewall event can never be forgotten (Cohan, 1982). The Stonewall Inn event is always celebrated by the gay community until today because it opened ways to the gay community and led to an active movement that protects the entire community.

The Progress of the Gay Rights Movement

According to Hall (2010), “On April 2000 more than a few hundred thousand campaigners gathered on the Mall in Washington, D.C., for the Millennium March, the fourth nationwide gay civil rights display”. The purpose of the presentation was to enumerate that Stonewall Inn demo was not the only event. In reality, the Stonewall event opened up to more protests that have been held by the gay community to enumerate to the American society that they deserve their rights (Hall, 2010). Cohan (1982) itemizes that the gay rights movement in the US is in the position to accomplish its objectives through actions by the governing body. However, it has to be noted that it is not going to be straightforward because of the stipulations stipulated by the people. The homosexual movement impediments are the low esteem of gays, nonexistence of interconnected and the indisposition of the Supreme Court to put forward to the gay citizens the same rights as the popular groups (Cohan, 1982). The reasons mentioned above are the other contributors that have slowed down the gay rights movement in the past.

In the article by Franke-Ruta (2013), the author states that “despite the progress, the issues that gave rise to the resistance that began the modernized gay rights movement have not changed as much.” Franke-Ruta acknowledges that the Stonewall Inn event has led to tremendous progress among the gay community. The event is of crucial importance because it has enabled the gay community to be recognized not only in the US and worldwide (Franke-Ruta, 2013). Essentially, evaluating the readings by other editors and authors is a good way that has been used by Franke-Ruta. An example of the progress is the homosexual society in the United States that now enjoys equal rights and adequate treatment by both cities administrations and the police.

Franke-Ruta approach is of the essence as she concludes that despite the progress made, there is still a long way to reach effectively the gay rights target. Katz (2009) illustrates in detail how the Stonewall Inn riot took place in U.S, and how it has benefited the current gay society. The contents of the article comprise numerous facts and shows that the gay community is termed as a minority group (Katz, 2009). The aspect of being a minority has made it difficult for them to attain equal rights. Furthermore, the arrests made over the years have contributed to the delay of the gay rights movement.

In spite of the police brutality and hindrances by the majority community, the gay community has fought harder, which is the reason they are in a better position today. The gay community has recently won a case in court, after which they were permitted to marry legally. The aspect of marrying each other has been the epitome of all their needs. Additionally, the implication of allowing the gay community to marry has not come out prosperous as it has met disapprovals from a huge section in the United States

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The paper described in detail the challenges that hindered the advancement of the gay movement and the primary strategy that had contributed to its progress. Stonewall Inn police riot is termed as the main event that has generated positive results for the gay community. The Stonewall Inn riot led to resistance in the United States because those involved believed that they were being harassed and debarred their rights. The participants of the riot were beaten, arrested, and as a result, they opted to resist. The gay rights movement has taken long to reach where it is currently because of such riots and police brutality. The fear of being known as being homosexual by family members the fear of being harassed by the police and the government in general hindered the progress of the movement in the past.

However, the challenges have led to positive results where politicians and government officials have opened out concerning their sexual status. The outcome of the Stonewall Inn riot has enabled the US gay people to demand equal rights. The support of the gay community by the Democratic Party in the 1980s has also helped in the support of the gay rights movement. The majority of people were against the provision of equal rights for gas, but the homosexual community has not given up. The outcome of their patience and determination has led the Supreme Court to permit them to marry legally starting from 2015. Thus, tremendous strides have been made, but there is a long way to achieve their full attainment.