Righting old wrongs

A bit late but cool all the same:

“In the past – as far back as the 1940s, but continuing for decades – the Department of State was among many public and private employers that discriminated against employees and job applicants on the basis of perceived sexual orientation, forcing some employees to resign or refusing to hire certain applicants in the first place,” Kerry said in a statement. “These actions were wrong then, just as they would be wrong today.”

The State Department head said he appointed the first ever Special Envoy for the Human Rights of LGBTI Persons as part of the Obama administration’s effort to promote LGBTI rights globally.

This effort has come under scrutiny by some individuals associated with the next administration. Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council and an ally of Donald Trump, has called for Kerry’s successor to reverse the Obama administration’s effort to “export the LGBTQ agenda globally” through the State Department.”

Because the men and women who will work for the incoming administration will interpret this a humane, human gesture as a stab in the back or groveling.

One of the best accounts of this dark period is Fellow Travelers, Thomas Mallon’s novel about being gay during the McCarthy era. For a non-fiction account, Lilian Faderman’s The Gay Revolution, published a year ago, is an essential historical document.

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