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Sunday, 9 December 2012

December 9th in Queer History

Saint's Day

Vida Dutton Scudder  (1861 - 1954) US
An American lesbian saint for our times, Scudder was an educator, writer, and welfare activist in the social gospel movement, who was one of the most prominent lesbian authors of her time. Her career combined academic pursuits, social activism, and religious fervour.

Her religious beliefs led her to a commitment to social activism. In 1888, Scudder joined the Companions of the Holy Cross, a group of Episcopalian women dedicated to intercessionary prayer and social reconciliation. Later, she worked constantly for trade union rights and socialism. She is recognized as a saint by the Episcopal Church (USA), with a feast day on October 10.

Born this day

Lucius Beebe (1902 –  1966) US
American author, gourmand, photographer, railroad historian, journalist, and syndicated columnist.

Beebe wrote a syndicated column for the New York Herald Tribune from the 1930s through 1944 called This New York. which chronicled the doings of fashionable society at notable restaurants and nightclubs Mr. Beebe is credited with popularizing the term "cafe society" which was used to describe the people mentioned in his column.

In 1940, Beebe met Charles Clegg,  who became his life partner. By the standards of the era, the homosexual relationship Beebe and Clegg shared was relatively open and well-known.

Marleen Gorris (1948 - ) Netherlands
A writer-director from the Netherlands, Gorris is known as an outspoken feminist and supporter of gay and lesbian issues which is reflected in much of her work.
She wrote and directed the films "A Question of Silence"(1982), "Broken Mirrors" (1984), "The Last Island" (1991), "Antonia's Line"(1995 - Oscar winner for Best Foreign Language Film), "Mrs. Dalloway" (1997) and "The Luzhin Defence" (2000).

Joan Armatrading (1950 - ) UK.
British singer, songwriter and guitarist Armatrading is a three-time Grammy Award-nominee and has been nominated twice for BRIT Awards as Best Female Artist. She also received an Ivor Novello Award for Outstanding Contemporary Song Collection in 1996. In a recording career spanning almost 40 years she has released a total of 17 studio albums, as well as several live albums and compilations.

Armatrading is reluctant to discuss her personal life in interviews. However, in April 2011, it was reported that Armatrading and her girlfriend Maggie Butler were planning to enter a civil partnership on 2 May 2011, in the Shetland Isles.

Mario Cantone (1959 – )  US 
American stand-up comedian, writer and actor, with numerous appearances on Comedy Central including Chappelle's Show. He also played Anthony Marentino on Sex and the City.
In October 2011, Cantone married his partner of 20 years, musical theater director Jerry Dixon, in a ceremony officiated by pastor Jay Bakker

Hape Kerkeling (1964 –) German
A well-known German actor, presenter and comedian. In a survey by the television station Kabel 1 in 2005, Kerkeling made it into the top ten favourite faces on German television; the only other two presenters were Günther Jauch and Thomas Gottschalk.
When the filmmaker Rosa von Praunheim revealed on a television talkshow that Kerkelingwas gay. Kerkeling's comment on the ensuing fuss was that while anyone of a more sensitive nature than him would probably have climbed into the bath with a hairdryer, he could not see the point: they would be dragging another poor soul through the dirt the next day anyway.

Mathew Helm (1980 – ) Australian 
Australian diver who won the silver medal at the 2004 Summer Olympics in the men's 10 metre platform. He was in first place at the end of the preliminary round and the semi-finals, but was passed by Chinese diver Hu Jia in the finals. He was one of only eleven openly gay athletes who competed at the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing.

Died this day 

Berenice Abbott (1898 - 1991)  US
American photographer best known for her black-and-white photography of New York City architecture and urban design of the 1930s. She also made memorable images of lesbians, bisexuals, and gay men in Paris in the 1920s and in New York from the 1930s through 1965.

David Brudnoy (1940 - 2004 ) US 
American talk radio host in Boston from 1976 to 2004. His radio talk show aired on WBZ radio. He was known for espousing his libertarian views on a wide range of political issues, in a manner that was courteous.
Brudnoy came to realize that he was homosexual early in life but successfully hid the fact for many years. He came out publicly in 1994, after returning from hospitalization to overcome his long-hidden fight with AIDS.

Sodomy in history, December 9th

1806 — English sailor John Sky is acquitted of sodomy after a physician testified that the inflammation of the victim’s rectum may or may not have been caused by sodomy.

1829 — Tennessee passes a criminal code, after having adopted North Carolina’s for several years. The penalty for sodomy is set at 5-15 years.

1837 — Arkansas recognizes common-law crimes.

1899 — Ohio Governor Asa Bushnell commutes George Pague’s sodomy sentence from three years to two years because of doubt as to his guilt.

1913 — The Missouri Supreme Court rules that cunnilingus does not violate the state’s anti-oral sex law. It says that the charge of "sexual intercourse with the mouth" is a contradiction in terms.

1967 — Jim Morrison, lead singer for The Doors, is arrested in New Haven after having told a police officer to "eat it" and directing him to his crotch. The charges later are dropped after much negative publicity to the city.


On this gay day

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