OK

This is only a Preview!

You must Publish this diary to make this visible to the public,
or click 'Edit Diary' to make further changes first.

Posting a Diary Entry

Daily Kos welcomes blog articles from readers, known as diaries. The Intro section to a diary should be about three paragraphs long, and is required. The body section is optional, as is the poll, which can have 1 to 15 choices. Descriptive tags are also required to help others find your diary by subject; please don't use "cute" tags.

When you're ready, scroll down below the tags and click Save & Preview. You can edit your diary after it's published by clicking Edit Diary. Polls cannot be edited once they are published.

If this is your first time creating a Diary since the Ajax upgrade, before you enter any text below, please press Ctrl-F5 and then hold down the Shift Key and press your browser's Reload button to refresh its cache with the new script files.

ATTENTION: READ THE RULES.

  1. One diary daily maximum.
  2. Substantive diaries only. If you don't have at least three solid, original paragraphs, you should probably post a comment in an Open Thread.
  3. No repetitive diaries. Take a moment to ensure your topic hasn't been blogged (you can search for Stories and Diaries that already cover this topic), though fresh original analysis is always welcome.
  4. Use the "Body" textbox if your diary entry is longer than three paragraphs.
  5. Any images in your posts must be hosted by an approved image hosting service (one of: imageshack.us, photobucket.com, flickr.com, smugmug.com, allyoucanupload.com, picturetrail.com, mac.com, webshots.com, editgrid.com).
  6. Copying and pasting entire copyrighted works is prohibited. If you do quote something, keep it brief, always provide a link to the original source, and use the <blockquote> tags to clearly identify the quoted material. Violating this rule is grounds for immediate banning.
  7. Be civil. Do not "call out" other users by name in diary titles. Do not use profanity in diary titles. Don't write diaries whose main purpose is to deliberately inflame.
For the complete list of DailyKos diary guidelines, please click here.

Please begin with an informative title:

We lost a real LGBT ally today. Jeanne Manford, the founder of Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG), has passed on. She was 92 years old.

In 1972, three years after Stonewall and one year before homosexuality was removed from the American Psychiatric Association's list of mental disorders, Manford stood up for her gay son. Despite the gay liberation movement being underway, it was not a particularly good time to be gay in the United States. In most states, gay sex was illegal, and gays faced pervasive discrimination at virtually all levels. Manford, a schoolteacher at the time, did not make a convenient or popular or even safe decision when she very publicly stood by her son over forty years ago.

Here she is holding a picture of her son:

Intro

You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long (that's approximately 50-175 words without any html or formatting markup).

Manford's journey in the LGBT movement began when her son was brutally beaten at a Gay Activists Alliance rally. It was an incident that changed her life. Following the attack, she wrote a letter to the New York Post in which she said:

I have a homosexual son, and I love him.
She then marched side-by-side with her son at the Christopher Street Liberation Day Parade holding a sign reading: "Parents of Gays: Unite in Support for Our Children." When she was asked by many in attendance at the march to speak to other parents, she decided to launch support groups in which parents could learn to accept their gay and lesbian children. That soon morphed into what we now know as PFLAG, which today has over 350 chapters and 200,000 members and supporters.

PFLAG National Executive Director Jody Huckaby writes:

Jeanne was one of the fiercest fighters in the battle for acceptance and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people. It is truly humbling to imagine in 1972 - just 40 years ago - a simple schoolteacher started this movement of family and ally support, without benefit of any of the technology that today makes a grassroots movement so easy to organize. No Internet. No cellphones. Just a deep love for her son and a sign reading “Parents of Gays: Unite in Support for Our Children.”

[...]

Jeanne’s work was called “the story of America…of ordinary citizens organizing, agitating, educating for change, of hope stronger than hate, of love more powerful than any insult or injury,” in a speech by President Barack Obama in 2009.

All of us - people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and straight allies alike - owe Jeanne our gratitude. We are all beneficiaries of her courage. Jeanne Manford proved the power of a single person to transform the world. She paved the way for us to speak out for what is right, uniting the unique parent, family, and ally voice with the voice of LGBT people everywhere.

Indeed, what a debt we owe this lady. We lost a real pioneer and hero whose contribution to our movement cannot be overstated. Well done, Jeanne. May you rest in peace.

Photobucket

Extended (Optional)

Originally posted to Remembering LGBT History on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 05:45 PM PST.

Also republished by Angry Gays, Milk Men And Women, and LGBT Kos Community.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.