The Year in Gay History: 1988
A Look Back at Gay History: 1990

A Look Back at LGBT History: 1989




Jan 31, 1989 - AIDS activists block morning rush hour traffic on the Golden Gate Bridge for a few hours to protest the low amount of federal funding for AIDS research. 

Feb 23, 1989 - Republican Senator Mark Hatfield of Oregon, who supported anti-gay legislation, is outed by AIDS activist Michael Petrelis.  This is thought to be the first outing of a person of note.

March 9, 1989 - Photographer Robert Mapplethorpe dies from AIDS at the age of 42.


May 24, 1989 - News reports suggest that an explosion aboard the USS Iowa in April, that killed 43 sailors, may have been an act of sabotage carried out by a sailor who was incensed that his male lover had married a woman.

June 25, 1989 - Alabama's first Gay Pride parade takes place in Birmingham with 200 participating.

July 14, 1989 - Marlon Riggs' documentary Tongues Untied premieres at L.A.'s Outfest.


July 25, 1989 - Steve Rubell of Studio 54 fame dies from AIDS at the age of 45.

Sept 11, 1989 - Liza's ninth studio album, Results, is released.  Produced by the Pet Shop Boys, its most popular track is a dance remake of Losing My Mind from the 1970 Sondheim musical Follies.


Sept 14, 1989ACT UP disrupts the trading floor of the NYSE to protest the high price of AZT.

Oct 7, 1989 - Bette Davis dies at the age of 81.

Nov 9, 1989 - Two men are shown lying in bed together on the ABC drama thirtysomething, a first for network TV.


Dec 1, 1989 - Choreographer Alvin Ailey dies of AIDS at the age of 58.

Dec 10, 1989 - ACT UP holds a notorious demonstration inside New York's St. Patrick's Cathedral that disrupts Sunday Mass.


(To read about LGBT history from other years, double click here.)



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