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We Raise Our Voices
Gay and Lesbian Pride and Politics

Civil Rights Legislation

Barney Frank Campaign letter (1972)
“…I will sponsor and work for legislation to outlaw discrimination against individuals on the basis of their sexual orientation…”
Barney Frank, 1972 candidate for Massachusetts state representative, took a public stand in support of civil rights for homosexuals, calling for the repeal of sexual conduct laws, an end to police harassment, and legislation to outlaw discrimination of gays and lesbians. He served for eight years in the Massachusetts Legislature, until he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1980 to represent the Fourth Congressional District of Massachusetts. Frank is the second openly gay member of the U.S. House of Representatives, and the first to come out willingly. From the William J. Canfield papers.

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