AARP continued its mission to empower all people 50 and over by being a sponsor at all four major diversity and inclusion journalist conferences: the National Association of Black Journalists, the Asian American Journalists Association, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, and the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association. AARP hosted booths, workshops, and panel discussions on topics ranging from health and caregiving to the Midterm Elections and what it means to be ‘gay and graying’ in America. AARP’s goal at each conference was to support and cultivate relationships with multicultural media professionals, educate them about AARP’s various programs and services designed for diverse audiences, and offer them story ideas, expert sources, and resources on the issues that matter most to their target audiences.
After her partner of 30 years died, Marsha Wetzel, at age 67, suddenly found herself evicted from her home by her partner’s family. Luckily, she found a new place to live at Glen St. Andrew Living Facility in Niles, Illinois. All was going well until word spread that Marsha was lesbian.
It was my nephew’s wedding about six years ago. He and his bride had asked me to officiate at the ceremony. The irony was probably lost on many, but not on me: Here I was, “marrying” my nephew, yet I was not able to marry my partner of over 30 years.
Back in the early 1970s, when being gay was still widely considered both a mental illness and a crime, Jeanne Manford got a phone call late one night in Queens, N.Y. It was a police officer, who informed her that her son Morty, a student at Columbia University, had been arrested. "And you know," the officer told her in an ominous tone, "he's homosexual."
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