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Friday, 7 October 2011

October 7th in Queer History: Dan Savage; Queer Saints, Sergius and Bacchush

Born this day:

Dan Savage, gay columnist, agony uncle, defender of queer kids and scourge of the religious right.

Saints Day: SS Sergius and Bacchus.

Today is the feast day of the best known of all the queer saints and martyrs of the Christian Church. Sergius and Bacchus were Roman soldiers, lovers, and martyrs for the Christian faith - one of several such military pairs of lovers honoured by the early church.

Died this day:

Gustaf Grundgens 

German actor and director, born in Dusseldorf as Gustav Heinrich Arnold Grundgens. Untill 1945 he was the director of the Prussian State Theatre. Grundgens was married to Erika Mann. He committed suicide. The film 'Mephisto' (1981) was based on his life story. Films: M (1931), Ohm Kruger (1935), Der Tunnel, Capriolen, Faust (1961)

Sodomy in History, October 7

1940 — The Michigan Supreme Court overturns a trial court’s sentence of a Gay man to be held in confinement in a mental institution, after his imprisonment on a sodomy charge ends, "until this court shall judge you cease to be a menace to public safety." The Supreme Court points out that the judge was without authority so to act.
1964 — Presidential Assistant Walter Jenkins is arrested in a Washington YMCA for soliciting another man. Many supporters of Senator Goldwater try to make a big deal out of it, although Goldwater himself refuses to comment.
1969 — The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals upholds the right of the state to proceed against sodomy arrestees by using indictment language different from the text of the sodomy law.
1975 — The Tennessee Court of Criminal Appeals rejects a challenge to a sodomy conviction based on the fact the women had been excluded systematically from the jury pool.
1976 — The Delaware Supreme Court rules that a man convicted of sodomy 27 years earlier and pardoned is not eligible to run for public office in the state.

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