Bryce Tache Profile picture
Jun 23, 2018 8 tweets 4 min read Twitter logo Read on Twitter
Del Martin (1921 – 2008)
Phyllis Lyon (born Nov 1924)

Activists, Trailblazers, Pioneers

How do you capture such incredible lives in a few tweets? I’ll share a bit. But everyone, please share what Del and Phyllis mean to YOU.

Born in the 1920s, Del and Phyllis met and fell in love in 1952. Three years later, they formed America’s first lesbian-rights organization, Daughters of Bilitis. They launched the monthly newsletter The Ladder in 1956.

Imagine the courage to be your true self in the 1950s...
They fought. For decades.

For equality.

Against California's sodomy law in the 1960s.

To help women’s groups accept gays (Del was the first open lesbian elected to the board of NOW, in 1973.)

To help ministers accept gays in churches.

To stop domestic violence...
They influenced then-mayor Dianne Feinstein to sponsor a San Francisco bill to outlaw employment discrimination for gays and lesbians.

And as they aged, they became senior activists, serving as delegates on the White House Conference on Aging.
They’ve had movies made about their lives.

Their activism.

Their love.

In 2004 they were the first to get married in San Francisco in when Mayor Gavin Newsom ordered same sex marriages to begin. Their union was voided by the CA Supreme Court.

They didn’t give up.
They were again the first to marry in 2008 when California legalized gay marriage.

This picture brings me to tears.

Del died a few months later...
Decades of activism. Of fighting when it was dangerous to fight. Of never hiding.

Decades of love.

We owe everything to Del and Phyllis and all the other heroes who didn’t wait for others to lead. Who saw a world needing changing... and changed it.

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More from @brycetache

Jun 4, 2018
Barney Frank (born 1940)

I won’t claim to be an expert on @BarneyFrank. And I know some of his decisions haven’t always been liked by some in the LGBT community. But Frank, who served in Congress for more than 3 decades, is a personal hero.
Frank publicly came out as gay in 1987, the first member of Congress to do so voluntarily. I was a HS senior then, a closeted, messed up teen living in Kansas. And here on the news, a powerful Massachusetts Congressman was telling the world he was gay...
No one was out then. Well, besides Boy George. I thought gay men acted like Jack Tripper on Three’s Company. I honestly didn’t know a gay man could be a smart, funny, powerful & out politician. For all Frank’s accomplishments, his legacy, to me, is how he normalized being gay...
Read 8 tweets

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