Stonewall veterans angry they weren’t focus of Cynthia Nixon’s campaign launch

Cynthia Nixon
Cynthia Nixon is running for governor of New York Photo: Twitter/Stonewall Inn

Cynthia Nixon is running to become the first LGBTQ, as well as the first female, governor of New York state. It would be a historic moment if Nixon was able to successfully lodge a primary challenge from the progressive wing of the Democratic party and unseat incumbent Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

One group of LGBTQ advocates, however, are upset at her, because she hasn’t paid them enough attention in their estimation.

Stonewall Rebellion Veterans Association director Williamson L. Henderson criticized her decision to launch her campaign at New York City’s iconic Stonewall Inn, where the Stonewall Uprising occurred in 1969. At the same time, he wishes he and his group, made up of LGBTQ activists who were a part of the Stonewall Uprising had been invited, a rather confusing stance.

“She’s ripping off gay history to promote herself,” he told the New York Daily News.

He added that he felt the former Sex and the City actor should have nicer things to say about her opponent, who, he noted, approved of same-sex marriage, allowing Nixon to marry her partner. Henderson is a Cuomo supporter.

Because who doesn’t talk up their opponent’s achievements while launching their own campaign?

“This is a dress rehearsal for her to run in three years for New York City mayor,” he said, cynically, sure she doesn’t want to move to Albany, the state’s capital.

The feud has a history, and it is another case of the group, which is reportedly made up of about 40 members, not getting enough shine from Nixon.

Nixon was a part of a 2013 campaign event for New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, and some of the Stonewall veterans were in the front row. He is upset they didn’t get a special shout out, even though, again, the focus of the night was on a politician’s political campaign.

“It’ll be five years in June, they were on a little stage that was about 2-feet high for show … they never even acknowledged us,” he said. “She was talking about gay rights, gay pride, and there were a dozen of us there. Fast forward to the other night — she doesn’t invite the Stone Wall Veterans?”

The Daily News added that he was upset at learning the event was open to supporters who paid as little as $1, noting that Stonewall vets identify each other with trivia questions including, “What was the cost of admission on weekdays?” The answer: A buck.

So it sounds like the group could have been at the event had they been willing to pony up the same as it cost to get into the bar all those years ago. That is, if they didn’t mind not being pointed out, brought onstage, and treated to a rousing round of applause.

While the Stonewall Veterans group and all others who fought for our rights deserve our utmost respect, one doesn’t tend to look good when demanding it or else the alliance is off. Surely this isn’t how we continue to make progress as a community.

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