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Tue Mar 3, 2020, 08:09 PM

Near site of landmark march, Philadelphia museum celebrates Jewish role in promoting gay rights

On July 4, 1965, 40 people gathered outside this city’s Independence Hall for the first Annual Reminder demonstration on behalf of civil rights for gays.

For this weekend’s 50-year commemoration, thousands attended a ceremony that included a reenactment of the initial protest.

The milestone, which comes barely a week after the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark ruling affirming same-sex marriage as a constitutional right, is being marked by several Philadelphia museums, including the National Museum of American Jewish History across the street from Independence Hall. When the court ruling was announced on the morning of June 26, the museum waived all admission fees in celebration.

“Mazel tov,” proclaimed a sign on the building’s Market Street facade.

"Jews, who are only a very small percentage of the American public, have been very engaged in civil rights struggles in this country,” said Marc Silber, a Philadelphian who created the Stonewall National Museum and Archives, a museum of gay history in Florida. “It makes perfect sense that Jewish gays and lesbians were at the forefront. I’m a gay man. Of course I take pride in that.”


This is an older article but a very important one. Jewish Americans have been at the forefront of every civil rights movement in our country.

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