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Gay History on Display at Library of Congress

Gay History on Display at Library of Congress


Documents from gay rights pioneer Frank Kameny, who was fired as a government astronomer in 1957 because he was gay, are on display for the first time at the Library of Congress.

The library is showing Kameny's 1961 petition to the U.S. Supreme Court contesting his firing. He was the first to petition the high court for violating his civil rights based on sexual orientation.

Though his petition was denied, his argument was pioneering. He argued the government's actions toward gays were an "affront to human dignity."

"This inclusion is an epic milestone in the telling of gay history because it places gay Americans' struggle for equality where it belongs -- in the story of the Constitution itself," Charles Francis, a founder of the Kameny Papers Project, told The Associated Press.

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