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Old 06-28-2019, 04:46 PM
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June 28, 1969: The Stonewall riots: a series of spontaneous, violent demonstrations by members of the gay (LGBTQ) community against a police raid that began in the early morning hours of June 28, at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village. They are widely considered to constitute the most important event leading to the gay liberation movement and the modern fight for LGBTQ rights in the United States.

Very few establishments welcomed openly gay people in the 1950s and 1960s. Those that did were often bars, although bar owners and managers were rarely gay. At the time, the Stonewall Inn was owned by the Mafia. It catered to an assortment of patrons and was known to be popular among the poorest and most marginalized people in the gay community: drag queens, transgender people, effeminate young men, butch lesbians, male prostitutes, and homeless youth. Police raids on gay bars were routine in the 1960s, and often resulted in arrests, beatings, sexual assaults and worse, and officers quickly lost control of the situation at the Stonewall Inn. Tensions between police and gay residents erupted into more protests the next evening, and again several nights later. Within weeks, Village residents quickly organized into activist groups to concentrate efforts on establishing places for gays and lesbians to be open about their sexual orientation without fear of being beaten and arrested.

Within a few years, gay rights organizations were founded across the U.S. and the world. On June 28, 1970, the first gay pride marches took place in major U.S. cities, commemorating the anniversary of the riots. Today, LGBT Pride events are held annually throughout the world toward the end of June to mark the Stonewall riots. The Stonewall National Monument was established at the site in 2016.