“One of the most comprehensive – and harshest – antigay measures put to voters in American history.”
What can this epic battle for civil and human rights tell us about today’s fight for inclusive democracy?
To mark the 30-year anniversary of this remarkable multi-year mobilization, visit the link attached to see a fresh batch of three stories each month leading up to Election Day, 2022.
This series begins with three months of setting the stage. In January, they open with Act I, in 1988 when racist skinheads beat Mulugeta Seraw to death on the streets of Portland, the language and meaning of Ballot Measure 9, and one response Western States Center supported, the Oregon Democracy Project.
February orients us to Oregon’s political and cultural geography and introduces leaders from the Latinx and African American communities who recognized the larger civil rights questions at stake.
Through spring and summer, this site will share examples of the varied forms of resistance and opposition that flourished in response to Measure 9. The media – both the LGBTQ press and mainstream urban and rural outlets (April). Grassroots innovators around the state (May). Unexpected voices (June). Artists and culture shapers (July). Educational outreach (August). “Straight but not narrow” allies (September).
Then they will wrap up in October with analysis written at the time, and observations from the vantage point of today.