Stonewall Uprising: American Experience

Film About Events That Marked a Turning Point in the Gay Rights Movement Scheduled in Conjunction with 50th Anniversary

Airs Monday, June 10 at 9:30 p.m.

(BOSTON, MA) — When police raided the Stonewall Inn, a popular gay bar in Greenwich Village in New York City on June 28, 1969, the street erupted into violent protests that lasted for days. The Stonewall riots, as they came to be known, marked a major turning point in the modern gay civil rights movement in the United States and around the world. Scheduled in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the actual events, Kate Davis and David Heilbroner’s Stonewall Uprising airs on SOPTV Monday, June 10 at 9:30 p.m.

Based on David
Carter’s Stonewall: The Riots that
Sparked the Gay Revolution
and told through interviews with Stonewall patrons, reporters and
the policeman who led the raid, Stonewall Uprising recalls the
fervently hostile climate in which the gay community was forced to live. The vast majority of medical authorities decreed
homosexuality a mental disorder and often prescribed brutal treatment,
including lobotomy. Homosexual acts were illegal in every state except Illinois
and gays frequently found themselves being hauled off to jail, their names
splashed in the next day’s newspaper. Police entrapment was rampant, and being
arrested meant that licenses to teach, practice law, medicine, or cosmetology
might be denied or revoked.

Even in Greenwich Village, where thousands of people moved to escape the
constant oppression of their hometowns, patrons of gay bars were accustomed to
frequent police harassment. But on June 28, 1969, when the N.Y.P.D. raided the
Stonewall, the gay community experienced what one Village Voice reporter who was on the scene called its “Rosa
Parks moment.” For the first time, patrons refused to be led into paddy wagons,
setting off a violent uprising that launched the gay rights movement. Exactly
one year later, America saw its first Gay Pride Parade as thousands marched up
Sixth Avenue.

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