March on Washington for Lesbian, Gay, & Bi Equal Rights and Liberation – April 25, 1993

Thirty years ago today, an estimated one million people gathered in Washington, DC, making it one of the largest protests in American history.

March organizers agreed upon seven primary demands, each with further secondary demands. The primary demands were:

  • We demand passage of a lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender civil rights bill and an end to discrimination by state and federal governments including the military; repeal of all sodomy laws and other laws that criminalize private sexual expression between consenting adults.
  • We demand massive increase in funding for AIDS education, research, and patient care; universal access to health care including alternative therapies; and an end to sexism in medical research and health care.
  • We demand legislation to prevent discrimination against lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people in the areas of family diversity, custody, adoption and foster care and that the definition of family includes the full diversity of all family structures.
  • We demand full and equal inclusion of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people in the educational system, and inclusion of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender studies in multicultural curricula.
  • We demand the right to reproductive freedom and choice, to control our own bodies, and an end to sexist discrimination.
  • We demand an end to racial and ethnic discrimination in all forms.
  • We demand an end to discrimination and violent oppression based on actual or perceived sexual orientation, identification, race, religion, identity, sex and gender expression, disability, age, class, AIDS/HIV infection.

Speakers and performers at the rally following the march included Indigo Girls, Judith Light, Melissa Etheridge, RuPaul, Nancy Pelosi, Madonna, Martina Navratilova, Ian McKellen, Eartha Kitt, Lani Kaʻahumanu, Urvashi Vaid, Jesse Jackson, and Martha Wash.

Some speakers and attendees of the march, including playwright Larry Kramer, expressed discontent with the Clinton administration’s handling of the AIDS crisis. President Clinton did not attend the march but instead sent a statement of support, which was read by California Representative (and future Speaker of the House) Nancy Pelosi.

C-SPAN ran more than six hours of live coverage, which you can see here.

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