The struggle for gay rights in America is one that has taken on many forms. From the 1950’s to the present, many organizations dedicated to the cause of homosexual liberation have emerged. These organizations and their supporters can be broken down into three categories. The first are those who view the struggle as a liberal individualist one. The second are those who feel that homosexuals are an ethnic group, and as such suffer as an oppressed minority. The third are those dedicated to a complete transformation of modern society and thought itself. This group seeks to prove that homosexual "deviancy" is a myth, and that current society is that which is flawed and in need of reform. The ultimate success of what is called the struggle for homosexual liberation lies ultimately with the third, revolutionary movement.
The Stonewall Riots of New York City are generally considered to have sparked the modern, late 20th century gay rights movement. They occurred after the police raided a
popular gay bar, the Stonewall Bar, in Manhattan's Greenwich Village. Although other homophile groups did already exist in America, the new energy and militancy generated by the riots created new organizations with different goals and methods. Where once the nation had the comparatively mild Mattachine Society and the Daughters of Bilitis, now the country was greeted with more vocal and demanding groups, most notably the Gay Activists Alliance and the Gay Liberation Front . Each of these three groups, the Mattachine Society, the GAA, and the GLF, can be viewed as representative of the three movements mentioned previously.
The liberal movement calls for equal rights for homosexuals. This entails the abolishment of all anti-homosexual laws, as well as the inclusion of all rights accorded to heterosexuals which homosexuals are denied, such as marriage. This movement is a
civil rights movement, for homosexuals are denied the rights that other American citizens...