When Ben Reise went to enlist in the military in 1942 during World War II, his future wife, Ruth Fern Gibb, went with him. The two had grown up together in Chicago, meeting in grammar school.
Ben Reise tried to enlist in the Navy, but they told him that he was too short at 5 feet, 4 inches, Ruth Reise said. Next, he went to the Army, which “took him right away.”
At the same time Ben enlisted, Ruth was also offered a job. Her height – 5 feet even – made her the perfect size to climb into airplane gas tanks to secure the rivets. Soon after, she began working at the Douglas Aircraft manufacturing plant, on the site where O’Hare International Airport is today.
From 1942 to 1945, Douglas manufactured 655 C-54 Skymasters, a military transport aircraft, at the Chicago plant. A photo from…
Political ideologues know what’s going on inside of angry men like Dan White, and they know how to use it.
Dan White grew up a world of normalized homophobia.
Queers were criminals in the eyes of the law, abominations to the Judeo-Christian God, and described as clinically deviant by psychiatry.
White’s political leaders and ministers told him his honor as a man was under attack; they said perverts like Harvey Milk were a threat to everything decent God-fearing patriots like Dan White revered.
Political leaders who use hate speech to ‘fire up’ their base know that some of those people will act on what they hear.
I assume they want it.
Dan White had every reason to think he’d be seen as a hero when he gunned
down Harvey Milk and George Moscone in 1978.
Herb Cain, a columnist for the San Francisco Chronicle, wrote after the trial about the police Department’s support for White, and their “dislike of homosexuals.”
As a former police officer, White must have known he could use some form of the ‘Gay Panic’ defense and get a reduced sentence.
Historically, in US courts, use of the gay panic defense has not typically resulted in the acquittal of the defendant; instead, the defendant was usually found guilty, but on lesser charges, or judges and juries may have cited homosexual solicitation as a mitigating factor, resulting in reduced culpability and sentences. Wikipedia
A large part of history is replete with the struggle for human rights, an eternal struggle in which final victory can never be won. But to tire in that struggle would mean the ruin of society. Albert Einstein, 1955
Love me baby, love me for who I am Fallen angels singing, “clap your hands” Don’t try to take my country, I will defend my land I’m not crazy, baby, naw I’m American
I know you’re angry.
So am I.
How could we not be?
Children ripped from their parents,
Concentration camps in Texas.
“I can’t breathe”
“I remember their laughter”
A child-man throwing ugly decrees from his high chair.
But from a high shelf in Europe come watercolor images a century on.
French families fleeing destruction.
Children starving in Yemen.
Corpses of trees standing witness as men follow orders into death.
As we follow our leaders.
They know who we need to hate.
In front of City Hall we are led in chants.
We know the story.
Our indignation gives us the right to hate.
We have worked so hard, but They stole our votes, our climate, our lives.
We will make them pay!
We will come here every night if necessary!
Bearing placards, twisted pictures of an uncrowned King.
A piñata we can beat to death Until we get our hands…