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He spent two years searching among the gay men he knew in Los Angeles. Although some expressed interest in a group, all were too fearful to join a gay organization that had only one member. But drawing on his years as a labor organizer, Hay persisted. Then he met Rudi Gernreich, later famous as the inventor of unisex fashion and the topless swimsuit. Gernreich became Hay's lover and eagerly joined his quest for a gay political movement. About a month after they met, Hay and Gernreich combed the gay beaches of Malibu and the Pacific Palisades looking for new Mattachine members.

They brought along copies of the Stockholm Peace Petition, which called for a withdrawal of troops from Korea. They mistakenly believed that the peace petition was so radical it would make the new gay organization seem mild by comparison. Nearly people signed the petition. No one signed up for Mattachine. Eventually, however, the effort took hold. At its largest, the Mattachine society had 5, members.

But the membership of the Mattachine Society grew too conservative for its founders. In , the group's new leaders attacked Hay and the other founders of Mattachine, all of whom had ties to the Communist Party. The founders all resigned, Mattachines' grassroots base declined, and Hay retreated from most gay activism until the rise of a more radical lesbian and gay movement in the early s. When this interview took place, Hay was eighty-six, and feared the radical right had such a hold on the United States that it could soon overturn gay-rights protections in the few states that had them.

His experience as a Communist Party member in the United States during the s gives him reason to worry, he says. He worried, he said, about the speed at which tolerance can shift into persecution. Cusac spoke with Hay in a small stucco house in West Hollywood. John Burnside, his lover of thirty-five years, was busy repairing Hay's glasses. Burnside is best known as the inventor of the teleidoscope, which creates kaleidoscope-like patterns out of mirrored reflections of the world. He also founded, with Hay, a group called the Radical Fairies during the s when the two of them decided the gay movement was once again growing too conservative.

Hay, who was nicknamed The Duchess, held forth for several hours, occasionally tilting back in his chair with a long creak, and whispering for emphasis. Harry Hay: You're talking about coming out to yourself and coming out to one or two other people. But it's not coming out to the people on the street you live on. It's simply coming into consciousness. Which is the same thing you did as a Red. Because you could be recruited, for example, into the autoworkers' union. And the union is underground. And it's illegal. If your supervisor or even your foreman found out that you were now a member of the union, you could be fired.

And you knew it. Once you were fired, you wouldn't be able to get a job in the industry again. They'd get all that information--your name, your address, your phone number--and you'd be fingered. Everybody would know. That was also going on if you were homosexual. You were threatened in the same way: with the loss of your livelihood. So you were wiped out either way. The only difference was that probably all your comrades in the auto factory also would cut you dead because you're one of those perverts.

In that time, you aren't a gay person, you aren't a homosexual person, you're a degenerate. And what you were suffering from was what was known as ostracism. Ostracism means you don't exist at all. And that's a very difficult situation to live with. As gay people, we had been chasing ostracism by that point for probably years.

Part II: Closing Essays — One Year Later

You just knew that you should have dropped into your black hole. Hay: I knew I was there, but I didn't believe what they said. I never believed what they said. I've always felt I carried a golden secret, a wonderful secret. Every time I thought about it, it made me feel warm inside and good. One of the big problems you run into--and you in your generation are involved with that--is you are very much concerned about what your neighbors think, and you are very much concerned about what your buddies think at work.

And that's really ostracism you've come to. Because if they think of you as a dirty pervert, and you hear that day in and day out, and that's your only feeling about yourself--which is what happens to very many people--then you carry that stuff around, and you think of yourself as a dirty person. That's all you know.

I never believed it. Hay: Up until I was eleven years old, I thought I was the only one of my kind in the world. I couldn't find anybody else who felt as I did. There was a book by somebody called Edward Carpenter, Intermediate Sex. I'm reading about Michelangelo and Alexander the Great, who were "homosexual"—a very long word. I don't know what that word means. So I go to look it up in the dictionary, and it isn't there. Hay: No, it was not in the dictionary.

I've always said, "If I had the sense I was born with and looked it up in the legal code, I would have found it. It wouldn't be in any American dictionary until And in most American dictionaries not until the Second World War. We had no words for ourselves. That's the important point--we didn't have words. I read about this thing, and I know that word is me. It's about these people, and I and they have the same feelings. I know there are others. From there on out, my dream has him in it--whoever him is going to be--but there is another him somewhere.

I thought of him as another me: subject-subject, not subject-object. He'll be just like me, and we'll share. I would look for my brothers, with whom I would share. I never deviated from that one instant. He was also my lover, and he introduced me to the Communist Party. And I say, "All of us guys"--we didn't call ourselves "gay" yet, we didn't call ourselves "homosexual" yet, we called ourselves "temperamental"-- "all of us temperamental guys, we should organize.

Will said, "For Christ's sake, you're out of your mind! What would we talk about? We're cocksuckers or nothing. What else? Maude Allen, a character actress from New York who was part of our company, was everybody's mother. And one day Maude says, "It would be a good idea if you underground guys got together. I was accustomed to walking alone. I'd find other people who agreed with me, but they also said, "I wouldn't dare mention it. And after you make it safe, then I'll stand, too. But you have to make it safe. Hay: Well, I was an older brother.

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So I had to do a lot of things first. My father was a self-made man, and he would beat me senseless. But he was a Scotsman, and stubborn. I'm his son, and I'm stubborn, too.

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I go on being stubborn. If you have to wait until I can make it safe, OK, I'll make it safe. And if I have to use myself as the battering ram, I'll do that too, the best I can. I'll tell you a deep, dark secret: Underneath that facade, I'm a terrified little sissy, just like everybody else. But I never let it show. I always say to people, "If you share my dream, why don't we walk together? Hay: In , when I first joined the party, I registered underground.

Then, during the war years, we were able to come out because we had put the more difficult things for people to swallow temporarily on shelves. And we were all part of the war effort. So we had open Communist Party meetings all during the war. I always thought to myself, "I love these people. And if I help them to build the pressure now, when I find the words to tell them what my vision is, they'll stop and they'll listen.

And it was quite a long time before I discovered that it wasn't going to work that way. It was a blow when I found out. After the war, it all clamped down again. During the Korean War, here on the West Coast, we had police inspectors on every block.

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Any house that had more than three cars in front was suspect. All the license plates were taken. They had discovered what house they were meeting in. They discovered who the people were. And then all you had to do was prove that you weren't what you weren't. You can't do that, as you know. It's the double negative thing. In the Mattachine Society, underground as we were, we were infiltrated within six months.

I have an FBI record. You'd be surprised. Every single member, every single Mattachine chapter--and there were chapters all over the country--were all infiltrated. We never knew who the mole was. So you had a whole sense of terror. People were very, very careful in this period, '49, ' The McCarthy witch hunts, the loyalty oaths of people who had to be involved in the school systems, the Hollywood Ten, and then under the Taft-Hartley law the CIO is cut back and the unions are run from the top, not from the bottom--all of this is happening at the same time.

We knew enough about how the Nazis had come into power to recognize that what they needed was a scapegoat. You make the scapegoat something beyond the pale, something beyond the law. Then the police move in and say, "Unless you move in this direction, unless you do as we tell you, we'll brand you as this.

Then you will be ostracized. And it wouldn't be the blacks because the blacks had already begun to be organized into the trade unions. It would be us. University of Wisconsin Press. Oscar Wilde. New Directions Publishing. Uranian Worlds. Oxford University Press. Archived from the original on February 5, Archived from the original on February 21, Archived from the original on February 11, New York, NY: W. Queer Pulp. Lost Gay Fiction. March 30, Retrieved May 15, Lost Gay Novels. Trials from Classical Athens. BUtterfield 8. Retrieved March 28, New York: St. Martin's Griffin. The Golden Age of Gay Fiction.


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Pulp Friction. The New York Times. Retrieved November 8, The Charioteer , The Last of the Wine , and particularly The Persian Boy quickly became best-sellers within the gay community Lambda Literary. Retrieved September 7, Valancourt Books. Retrieved January 19, The Washington Post. Retrieved January 21, Retrieved January 23, Novel With Legs". The Wall Street Journal.

Retrieved January 15, Kirkus Reviews.


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Retrieved February 17, Lieutenant-Colonel de Maumort. New York: Alfred A. Windy City Times. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved March 11, Martin's Griffin, , page 2. The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction. London: Orbit Books. Percy; Stephen Donaldson Encyclopedia of Homosexuality.

Garland Publishing. SF Site. Griffith, Nicola,, Pagel, Stephen First ed. Woodstock, N. Dark Romance: Sexuality in the Horror Film. In Susannah Radstone ed. September 16, Retrieved June 25, The Seattle Times. Archived from the original on July 24, Retrieved March 6, The Library Quarterly. Rainbow family collections: Selecting and using children's books with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer content. Children's Literature Association Quarterly. April 27, Archived from the original on June 7, Archived from the original on October 28, The New York Public Library.

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The Guardian. Retrieved October 20, Archived from the original on October 17, Retrieved October 20, — via Samesame. The Horn Book Magazine. By , the pulverizing puncher was a member of the U. Olympic boxing team in Mexico City. Foreman won a gold medal when his bout against Jonas Cepulis of the Soviet Union was halted by the referee in the second round.

What Foreman did next always has been the subject of some speculation.

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Foreman, 69, spoke to The Undefeated about that moment a half-century ago, Colin Kaepernick and more. Days later, you paraded around a boxing ring proudly clutching a tiny American flag after winning a gold medal. Some suggested that the International Olympic Committee persuaded you to defuse the controversy. When I walked into the Olympic Village, I saw a couple of athletes who looked like me. I thought that, after I win my last fight, when I bow to the judges, I am going to carry our flag.

I waved the flag so they knew I was American. Everyone started applauding, so I waved it higher. That is the only reason I had that flag. If I had to do it all over again, I would have had two flags in my pocket [laughs]. I went home and wore the gold off that medal. It was , and it really fit well with my Nehru jacket that was in style. I proudly walked down Lyons Avenue in the 5th Ward [in Houston] wearing my medal. I looked at him kind of funny.

He walked away. From then on, anyone who came up to me and might say the same thing, they were only seconds away from getting [the glare], man. I carried a chip on my shoulder. It turned into anger. I changed, my face changed into a sword. Then, like a banana, I peeled off [the look] during my metamorphosis [decades later]. Foreman made his professional ring debut at the Garden on June Do you find it interesting that President Trump pardoned turn-of-the-century black heavyweight champion Jack Johnson, but that President Barack Obama did not?

He was a special guy [and a fellow Texan].