Sep 26, 2015
Why You Shouldn't Boycott "Stonewall"
Stonewall wasn't sacralized until the late 1970s, when gay historians such as John D'Emilio and Jonathan Katz seized upon it as The Moment That Changed Everything. That contention has been been disputed -- Stonewall got no media attention at the time, so no one outside of New York City knew that it happened. There had already been many rebellions against harassment, and lots of gay organizations were already in operation.
It's a little simplistic to talk about "Gay Life Before/After Stonewall."
Still, it sounds more substantive, more definitive, than "Gay Life Before/After the Black Cat" or "Gay Life Before/After Compton's Cafeteria."
In the 40 years since, Stonewall has undeniably united us as a people with a history and a destiny.
He arrives in New York from Kansas...um, I mean Indiana, meets a group of nonwhite, transgender, and colorfully-dressed gay hippies, and helps them overthrow the Wicked Witch of the West...um, I mean Ed Murphy, the Big Bad who runs Oz...um, I mean the Stonewall Inn.
It's not just the plot of The Wizard of Oz -- it's the plot of every colonialist movie every made, from Tarzan on down.
We now know who threw the first brick at Stonewall -- not any of the real people, who were really there, and claim the honor -- but the young, white, clean-cut, heart-throb leader of the natives, Danny Winters.
And apparently the 1960s gay people have a distinctly 2015 mentality, responding to their exploitation (with Danny's help) as if it were happening today. No 1960s closets for them!
But this isn't a review -- I can't review a movie I haven't seen. It's a reflection.
Stonewall has been released.
A positive movie about LGBT people, with a gay director and some gay actors in the cast, has been written, directed, produced, and released.
Isn't that, in itself, a cause for celebration?
See also: The Stonewall Veteran and the Bodybuilder in the Park.