Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

We Want Your Vote! for Our 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition, We're Asking You to Help Us Name the 40 Greatest Gay Heroes of the Past 40 Years. Please Cast Your Votes on Advocate.com!

Magazine article The Advocate (The national gay & lesbian newsmagazine)

We Want Your Vote! for Our 40th Anniversary Collector's Edition, We're Asking You to Help Us Name the 40 Greatest Gay Heroes of the Past 40 Years. Please Cast Your Votes on Advocate.com!

Article excerpt

The Advocate has always been a partnership between our editors and our readers, and to celebrate our 40th birthday, we're getting together on one of our boldest moves yet: Through an online poll on Advocate.com, we're asking our readers to cast their votes for the 40 greatest gay heroes of this era, and the results will be in our upcoming collectors edition. We've provided 100 names to choose from as well as a blank space to write in a name of your own.

Your votes will help us name the number 1 greatest gay hero of our time--and, in order, 39 highly worthy runners-up. As far as we know, no one's ever dared to rank our legendary queer movers and shakers. In the purest sense, of course, no one can; as a community and a movement, we epitomize apples and oranges. Yet it's worthwhile to take a moment and ask yourself: Of all the brave actions taken by remarkable gay people, which have meant most to you? Of all the names you admire, which one stands above the rest?

We're not saying it's easy. Here, in no special order, are just a few of the great gays we've chosen:

* Mitch Grobeson: first openly gay officer in the Los Angeles police department, whose lawsuit convinced the city to end discrimination against LGBT officers;

* Marlon Riggs: filmmaker, poet, educator, and gay rights activist whose documentary Tongues Untied was a controversial look at black gay identity;

* Betty Berzon: pioneering psychotherapist who helped persuade the American Psychiatric Association to drop homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses;

* Christopher Isherwood: novelist (Goodbye to Berlin, A Single Man) whose stories were later adapted into the play and film Cabaret;

* Martin Delaney: founded Project Inform in 1985 to spread information about the AIDS crisis;

* Barbara Gittings: founder of the Daughters of Bilitis New York City chapter as well as one of the pioneers of the LGBT rights movement; and

* Audre Lorde: writer, poet (The First Cities), and activist in the civil rights, antiwar, and feminist movements. …

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