Friday, November 20, 2015

Rubio and Trump make anti-Muslim proposals that mirror anti-gay proposals from the right in the 1980s as AIDS exploded


Both Donald Trump and Marco Rubio are reported to have proposed rather Draconian measures against Muslims in the US in the wake of the Paris attacks, and it might be well to take a moment to remember the rhetoric against gay men back in the 1980s, when I was living in Dallas.

Remember that in April 1984, “they closed the baths in San Francisco” and pretty much everywhere else soon.  (My last visit ever was to The Club Baths in Dallas in March 1983 as I remember.  My first had been in New York City in January 1975.)  “Non-sex” clubs have, of course, popped up in major cities.  (I’ve only been to DC’s Crew Club once, in the mid 1990s.)  But there was also talk of closing all the bars and gay churches, if that could comport with reality.

In fact, a strengthening of the sodomy law (2106), known as “2138” was proposed in 1983, and would have imposed a military-style ban in most occupations.  Very few gay men today (even in the established gay press) seem to remember this history today.

Of course, Rubio’s idea sounds like a “threat” to social media today (especially Twitter) which I’ll take up soon.  No question, Hitler marked the Jews in the 1930s and it was too long before anybody noticed.

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