On Friday May 30 at the Stonewall Inn, Interior Secretary Sally Jewell announced the government’s efforts to create landmarks commemorating LGBT history.
The federal government, working with The National Park Service, has organized a team of 18 scholars to decide which locations would serve as landmarks to LBGT history.
According to AP, the committee will be exploring the LBGT movement’s narrative through law, religion, media, civil rights and the arts. Park Service Director, Jonathan Jarvis stated, “The Park Service is, in my view, America’s storyteller through place.” The sites and people of LBGT significance will be considered for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places, within National Historic Landmarks, or as national monuments.
In case you were wondering where the money for this would be coming from, the Gill Foundation has financed the project with $250,000. The foundation’s board chairman, Tim Gill, wants the landmarks and monuments to recognize, “the courageous contributions of LGBT Americans.” Contributions to what, he didn’t say, but Gill wants to make sure “none of our fellow Americans behind” without a historical marker noting … what, who they liked to sleep with?
The National Park Service’s website states, “The National Park Service LGBT Initiative projects explore how the legacy of LGBT individuals” so that they can be “recognized, preserved, and interpreted for future generations.” Throughout its online statement, the term “interpreted for future generations” is emphasized, assuring us that their interpretation will be the only interpretation tolerated.
The focus to tell the “complete story,” makes us wonder what kinds of stories will be told. Gerard Koskovich, one of the 18 committee members, recalls when the federal government in the 1970’s was “…rallying around persecuting LGBTQ people and devoted to punishing us, arresting us and excluding us.” Now, they are building monuments for them.
This brings forth the question: Are the plans to erect such monuments and landmarks meant to honor and commemorate the so-called advancements of the LBGT community? Or is it the contrite government’s ultimate “sorry” for past injuries?
Since 19 states have jettisoned five millennia of understanding about marriage and family, an effort to put the gay stamp on U.S. history is hardly surprising.