Red Era (1986-1990) Ballroom Ceremony

On April 19th, 2014 in New York City, The House and Ball community gathered in celebration of the Red Era 1986-1990. Ballroom is divided in color coded time period eras. 1986-1990 is the shortest era of ballroom but the most impactful after the White Era (The Pioneers) 1967-1985. 

If you recall the infamous "Paris Is Burning" film around this era around this time.

Special shout out to Derek Ebony Murphy & Michael Roberson for putting this together.

Special shout out to Buddah Balenciaga & The Luna Show!

Gay Black History: Marsha P. Johnson & Stonewall 1969!

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The Shot Glass Heard Around The World
In 1969, the Stonewall riots — precipitated when the NYPD burst into the famed gay bar and started being their usually abusive selves — defined the modern gay movement.

Among the first to physically resist the police was Marsha P. Johnson, the now infamous transgender rights activist who co-founded S.T.A.R. (Street Transgender Action Revolutionaries) with Sylvia Rivera in the ’70s.

At 1:20 in the morning on Saturday, June 28, 1969, four plainclothes police officers entered Stonewall Inn and announced “Police! We’re taking the place!" 

Officers forced the customers to form into two lines divided by perceived gender and show them their genitals to confirm if it matched the gender on their identification card.

At some point during the raid, Marsha Johnson proclaimed, ‘I got my civil rights!' and then threw a shot glass into a mirror, adding on to the tension and creating an atmosphere of resistance. Some witnesses and historians believe her action is what instigated the riot.

Patrons began to refuse to produce their I.D. and police decided to arrest everyone still at the bar. Those who were not arrested gathered outside the bar and quickly drew a crowd of over 1,000 queers. As rumors spread through the crowd that those inside were being beaten by cops, they began throwing pennies, beer bottles and other items at police.

A drag queen who was shoved by an officer in front of the crowd responded by hitting him on the head with her purse as the crowd began to boo.

Soon after, an unidentified lesbian was hit on the head with a billy club after complaining that her handcuffs were too tight. She faced the bystanders and shouted, “Why don’t you guys do something?”

Police threw her into the back of a patrol wagons, at that point the crowd became a mob and collectively resisted the police.

——-

Along with Sylvia Rivera, the two transgender revolutionaries created S.T.A.R. and STAR House in which they housed, fed and clothed homeless drag queens and trans* youth by hustling in the streets of NYC so that their children didn’t have to.

Marsha P. Johnson is often credited for inciting the Stonewall Riots, yet she receives close to no recognition by mainstream Gay Organizations and the queer community. I have no doubt that the erasure of Marsha’s participation in the riots and the Gay Liberation Movement is due to her being a black, transgender radical. Had she’d been a white gay cis-male, her name would be permanently embedded in every queer’s mind.

I know Marsha as a courageous queer revolutionary, a queen of Queens, a Stonewall Veteran, a dedicated activist, a mother of S.T.A.R. and a personal idol. She deserves more than anyone I know, to be recognized by the queer community.

In July 6, 1992, Johnson’s body was found floating in the Hudson River off the West Village Piers shortly after the 1992 Pride March. Friends of Johnson claims she was harassed near the spot where her body was found. The police disregarded this and ruled her death a suicide without any evidence. However, in November 2012, the NYPD re-opened the case.

Click here to watch “Pay It No Mind”, a documentary on Marsha P. Johnson.

source

“Our” History In Photos!

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I don't know if you can tell but I have been doing a lot of researching and reading in general. I LOVE to read and I have been missing it. Anyway, I found this article on the net and wanted to shared on the blog.

 

Trent Kelley wondered how he could study the history of African-American gay men when so many of them had lived their lives in relative secrecy. He found his answer in vintage photographs — which he began to collect on eBay, at flea markets and at estate sales — which depict everything from urban dandies and workers to athletes and soldiers.

Then what?

Eager to share this findings and thoughts, he set up a Flickr stream he titled “Hidden in the Open: Photographic Essay of Afro American Male Affections,” which featured some 200 photographs from the Civil War to the present, an essay and romantic snapshots of contemporary black gay couples, men Mr. Kelley contrasts as being “out in the open.”

The early portraits, most from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, reflect the broader African-American embrace of photography as a powerful means of self-representation that defied withering stereotypes.

“Historically, the Afro-American gay male and couple have largely been defined by everyone but themselves,” wrote Mr. Kelley, a playwright in Texas. “Afro-American gay men are ignored into nonexistence in parts of black culture and are basically second-class citizens in gay culture.”

The path to social acceptance for African-American gay men has been fraught. While the black church led the struggle for equality and justice, Mr. Kelley notes that it also often denied its gay members those very same ideals. And the wider gay rights movement, for many years dominated by middle-class whites, has harbored biases against men and women of color.

But “Hidden in the Open” testifies to the existence of a historic and thriving black gay culture, one that was neither monolithic nor dependent on white people. It challenges the patronizing view of the besieged African-American gay man, shunned by his own community and inevitably reliant on white men for companionship and self-expression. Such stereotypes ignore the depth of white homophobia as well as the presence of tolerated gay subcultures within the African-American community.

The affectionate pairings featured in “Hidden in the Open” also challenge modern discomfort with male intimacy, sexual or otherwise. Even as American public opinion today is largely supportive of gay equality and same-sex marriage, the idea of male intimacy can still fuel uneasiness and homophobia.

This discomfort was not always the case. In his book “Dear Friends: American Photographs of Men Together, 1840 to 1918” (Harry N. Abrams), the art historian David Deitcher wrote that the introduction of photography in the United States in the mid-19th century coincided with “a surprisingly broadminded attitude toward same-sex intimacy.” Close, even passionate, bonds of friendship with members of one’s own sex were accepted and even encouraged.

Public displays of male closeness flourished during this time. As Mr. Deitcher observes, such intimacy was evident in all-male bastions of middle-class privilege, like universities, as well as socioeconomically diverse milieus, like the military, fraternal organizations, and big cities where millions migrated from farms and small towns in search of work.

This historical context makes the nature of some of the relationships depicted in “Hidden in the Open” uncertain and ambiguous, as Mr. Kelley acknowledges: “Not every gesture articulated between men was an indication of male-to-male intimacies. Assuredly, what all photographs in this essay have in common are signs of Afro American male friendship, affection, and love that were recorded for posterity without fear and shame.”

These quiet photographs underscore a poignant irony about masculinity: while emotional intimacy can be difficult for men, the capacity for us to bond in ways fraternal and nonsexual is profound. And with attitudes about homosexuality rapidly changing, these connections are increasingly evident across sexualities, with men of different orientations sharing platonic friendships based on a common masculinity, not sexuality.

If such bonds have been important to all men, they have been crucial for men of color. The alliances between African-American men — as well as with their female counterparts — were historically a matter of survival, a means of uniting against the forces of slavery, segregation and racism.

Yet, discussions of photographs of male intimacy have typically focused on white men. Of the more than 100 examples in “Dear Friends,” for example, only a few feature men of color. “Hidden in the Open” corrects this by exploring how race informs historic images of men together.

Essex Hemphill, the poet and activist, compared the pain he experienced as a closeted young black man with a kind of exile imposed both from without and within. He wrote of the agony of not being true to himself. The black gay man who passes as straight, he observed, “cannot honestly occupy the spaces of family and friendship because he has adopted — out of insecurity, defense, and fear — the mask of the invisible man.”

“Hidden in the Open” peels away the mask of this invisibility, liberating the story of black men together from the constraints imposed on it by history, by culture and by the men themselves.

In so doing, it attests to the power of photography to bring to light men who, because of who they were, remained hidden in plain sight.

Check out some of the pics!

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CLICK HERE FOR MORE PICS AND CREDIT!

” He Ain’t Kobe, What’s The Big Deal”!?

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Debbie Downer… there is ALWAYS one of those in the bunch. You know the one, always in the back of the room sittin in the corner.

As you may or may not know, NBA player Jason Collins announced to the world that he was gay. Of course there were a few haters but overall Jason was welcomed with a lot of love and encouragement.  People has been tweeting left and right on my timeline all day. Today was a good moment for gay people today. 

And then it happen. 

Read more…

NBA Baller Comes Out As Gay…

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AND he is not retired nor is he currently a free agent!

Washington Wizards center Jason Collins admits that he is apart of the Rainbow Coalition in the new issue of Sports Illustrated…

Read more…

Brendon Ayanbadejo Extends His Support To The Transgender Community!

Brendon Ayanbadejo

 I loooove this guy.





Brendon Ayanbadejo plays for the Baltimore Ravens (who obviously won the Super Bowl last week) and has spoken out about equality before and really gets involved; he’s a known LGBT ally.

Read more…

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