United States Capitol. (Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons)

In a paper titled “America’s Promise of Reconciliation and Redemption: The Need for an Official Acknowledgement and Apology for the Historic Government Assault on LGBT Federal Employees and Military Personnel,” the LGBTQ Washington-based organization Mattachine Society, along with the law firm McDermott Will & Emery, are calling upon the U.S. Senate to apologize for their long history of homophobia. Among the government-level supporters of this paper are senators Tammy Baldwin and Tim Cain. 

The paper calls all members of Congress, the military and the Executive Branch to action, outlining each sectors’ explicit racist, homophobic, transphobic, colorist and xenophobic activities actions of hare and intolerance. The 28-page record goes into detail about anti-LGBTQ legislation, lynching of African Americans, Japanese-American internment and harming/harassing Native Hawaiians. 

Charles Francis, president of Mattachine, says, “Our mission of archive activism strives to prevent America from repeating the most appalling errors of our history. For this project, we were inspired by the fundamental question ‘Do you want to remember or forget?’ which has been posed to governments worldwide when considering grave wrongs committed against their citizens. The government’s assault over seven decades on LGBT Americans is such a wrong requiring acknowledgment and apology.”

Over the course of two years, several members of both McDermott and Mattachine poured over Freedom of Information Act (FIA) requests in an effort to piece together the United States’ past of LGBTQ discrimination. In addition to these documents, Mattachine and McDermott brought the history of the U.S. military and federal employment into question. 

No financial reparations are being requested from the government. 

This means that, unlike past resolutions, the House of Representatives will not have to pay any one person or group as a consequence of the statement. The paper also brings up the issue of international hate crimes from the nations of Canada, Australia, Germany, Spain, the United Kingdom, Brazil and the Netherlands. 

To read the entire document, go to bit.ly/3zDwlTk.

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