The Hate Queen Returns…sorta.

For those of you who are not familiar with the slimy, gay-hating past of Anita Bryant, here’s a quick history lesson.

Anita Bryant started out as a singer, TV personality, and the spokeswoman for Florida Orange juice.  Good for her.  Later in her career, however, she developed some strange version of a moral conscience and decided to dedicate her life to god by becoming involved with politics and headlining for the “moral majority” (an evangelical Christian campaign started by Jerry Falwell).  POINT BEING, during her crusade, in her home state of Florida, the Dade County Board of Supervisors created a law which protected the rights of LGBT people from discrimination in housing, hiring, and a variety of other areas.  Cue Anita Bryant’s outrage.  She launches a giant campaign to get this bill overturned, which she does, then goes a step further by invading California through her political network to create PROPOSITION 6, also known as the Briggs Initiative.  The Briggs Initiative would forcibly fire all LGBT teachers and make it impossible for openly gay people, or in some interpretations of the law, anyone who even supported LGBT rights, to be hired as an educator.  Prop 6 failed epically in the 1978 referendum, and Anita Bryant sunk into obscurity.  Thank god.

This lovely piece of unbiased journalism from Gossip Boy notes that Anita has resurfaced to the speakers track, albeit on a much, much lower radar to continue spreading hate.  However, to note her co-speakers and the legitimacy of the events where she will speak (which is to say, racists and homophobes; non-existent), it seems as if her hate messages are not reaching nearly as far anymore.  I’m not going to cite this article as a definitive piece of evidence to support my belief that America is slowly but surely rejecting homophobia and those who promote it, but it does put a little sparkle in the argument.  Additionally, the total shame of Anita Bryant’s legacy comes to the fore in this article, as Gossip Boy notes that there is actually A WARRANT FOR ARREST on her person in Oklahoma for writing a hot check.  Makes it hard to believe she was once the spokesperson for upstanding Christians everywhere, huh?

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