Wednesday, October 20, 2021 Isabelle Odeh

Every October is LGBTQ History Month. Created in 1994, by Rodney Wilson, a high school teacher from Missouri, who thought there should be a month dedicated to teaching LGBTQ history. We celebrate this month to highlight the accomplishments and achievements of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. This is a way to talk about the role models from the community.

October was selected to coincide with National Coming Out Day which is celebrated on October 11th. During this month, there is a Spirit Day on October 20th, where people around the country wear purple in support of the LGBT youth, Ally Week, a week held in which allies against LGBT bullying is celebrated and the anniversary of 21-year-old Matthew Shepard’s murder on October 12th, 1998. This led to Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act in 2009 to prevent hate crimes. Read more about this act here.

This is an important month to celebrate as we remember the Stonewall Uprising. Occurring on June 28, 1969, which sparked the Gay Liberation Movement in the United States, Stonewall Inn in New York City’s Greenwich Village was a gay club and refuge for many in the LGBTQ community. On June 28, 1969 the New York City police raided the inn, sparking a riot with the bar patrons and neighborhood residents. This included hundreds of people and led to six days of protests with violent clashes with the police outside the bar. Leading to the creation of Pride Month in June, in which many people march with pride for equal rights, the Stonewall Uprising was an important impact on the LGBTQ community.

In June of 2015, the Supreme Court passed the ruling allowing same-sex marriage to be legal. In a rule of 5-4, the law becomes a Constitutional right. A huge stepping stone for the LGBTQ community, this ensures the right that many have fought for decades. We continue to celebrate the steps forward for the LGBTQ community. Celebrate this month as we learn more and continue to move forward.

Celebrate LGBTQ History Month with these items from our collection:

Movies

Bessie

Bessie Smith's transformation from a struggling young singer into 'The Empress of the Blues', who became one of the most successful recording artists of the 1920s and is an enduring icon today.

Milk

His life changed history, his courage changed lives. Harvey Milk is a middle-aged New Yorker who, after moving to San Francisco, becomes a Gay Rights activist and city politician. On his third attempt, he is elected to San Francisco's Board of Supervisors in 1977, the first openly-gay man to be elected to public office in the United States. The following year, both he and the city's mayor, George Moscone, are shot to death by former city supervisor, Dan White, who blames his former colleagues for denying White's attempt to rescind his resignation from the board. Based on the true story of Harvey Milk.

 

The Imitation Game 

During the winter of 1952, British authorities entered the home of mathematician, cryptanalyst and war hero Alan Turing to investigate a reported burglary. They instead ended up arresting Turing himself on charges of "gross indecency," an accusation that would lead to his devastating conviction for the criminal offense of homosexuality - little did officials know, they were actually incriminating the pioneer of modern-day computing. Famously leading a motley group of scholars, linguists, chess champions and intelligence officers, he was credited with cracking the so-called unbreakable codes of Germany's World War II Enigma machine. An intense and haunting portrayal of a brilliant, complicated man

How to survive a plague 

The story of the brave young men and women who successfully reversed the tide of an epidemic, demanded the attention of a fearful nation, and stopped AIDS from becoming a death sentence. This improbable group of activists bucked oppression and infiltrated government agencies and the pharmaceutical industry, helping to identify promising new medication and treatments and move them through trials and into drugstores in record time.

 

Children's Books

 This day in June

"A picture book illustrating a Pride parade. The endmatter serves as a primer on LGBT history and culture and explains the references made in the story"-- Provided by publisher.

Who was Harvey Milk?

Although he started out as a teacher without aspirations to be an activist or politician, Harvey Milk found himself captivated by the history-making movements of the 1960s. He would eventually make history of his own by becoming the first openly gay elected politician in California. While in office, Harvey Milk advocated for equal rights for the gay community. Even though his life and career were cut short, Harvey is still seen by many as one of the most famous and most significantly open LGBT officials ever elected in the United States. His life and legacy continue to inspire and unite the community

           

Gay & lesbian history for kids : the century-long struggle for LGBT rights, with 21 activities

 

Young Adult Books

Last night at the Telegraph Club

Seventeen-year-old Lily Hu can't remember exactly when the question took root, but the answer was in full bloom the moment she and Kathleen Miller walked under the flashing neon sign of a lesbian bar called the Telegraph Club. America in 1954 is not a safe place for two girls to fall in love, especially not in Chinatown. Red-Scare paranoia threatens everyone, including Chinese Americans like Lily. With deportation looming over her father--despite his hard-won citizenship--Lily and Kath risk everything to let their love see the light of day

Like a love story

It's 1989 in New York City, and for three teens, the world is changing. Reza is an Iranian boy who has just moved to the city with his mother to live with his stepfather and stepbrother. He's terrified someone will guess the truth he can barely acknowledge about himself. Reza knows he's gay, but all he knows of gay life are the media's images of men dying of AIDS. Judy is an aspiring fashion designer who worships her uncle Stephen, a gay man with AIDS who devotes his time to activism as a member of ACT UP. Judy has never imagined finding romance, until she falls for Reza and they start dating. Art is Judy's best friend, their school's only out-and-proud teen. He'll never be who is conservative parents want him to be, so he rebels by documenting the AIDS crisis through his photographs. As Reza and Art grow closer, Reza struggles to find a way out of his deception which won't break Judy's heart and destroy the most meaningful friendship he's ever known.

Being Jazz : my life as a (transgender) teen

In her remarkable memoir, Jazz reflects on these very public experiences and how they have helped shape the mainstream attitude toward the transgender community. But it hasn’t all been easy. Jazz has faced many challenges, bullying, discrimination, and rejection, yet she perseveres as she educates others about her life as a transgender teen. Through it all, her family has been beside her on this journey, standing together against those who don't understand the true meaning of tolerance and unconditional love. Now Jazz must learn to navigate the physical, social, and emotional upheavals of adolescence—particularly high school—complicated by the unique challenges of being a transgender teen. Making the journey from girl to woman is never easy—especially when you began your life in a boy’s body.

Adult Books    

The seven husbands of Evelyn Hugo : a novel   

 Aging and reclusive Hollywood movie icon Evelyn Hugo is finally ready to tell the truth about her glamorous and scandalous life. But when she chooses unknown magazine reporter Monique Grant for the job, no one in the journalism community is more astounded than Monique herself. Why her? Why now?

Stonewall : breaking out in the fight for gay rights

A dramatic retelling of the Stonewall riots of 1969, introducing teen readers to the decades-long struggle for gay rights"-- Provided by publisher.

How to survive a plague : the inside story of how citizens and science tamed AIDS

"This is the story of the men and women who, watching their friends and lovers fall, ignored by public officials, religious leaders, and the nation at large, and confronted with shame and hatred, chose to fight for their right to live. We witness the founding of ACT UP and TAG (Treatment Action Group), the rise of an underground drug market in opposition to the prohibitively expensive (and sometimes toxic) AZT, and the gradual movement toward a lifesaving medical breakthrough"-- Provided by publisher.