Google is closing out Pride Month with a doodle of Marsha P. Johnson. Her appearance on the search engine’s home page has led to many people discovering her contributions to the fight for equal rights for the LGBT community for the first time.
Google Honours Marsha P. Johnson At The End Of Pride Month
“Today’s Doodle, illustrated by Los Angeles-based guest artist Rob Gilliam, celebrates LGBTQ+ rights activist, performer, and self-identified drag queen Marsha P. Johnson, who is widely credited as one of the pioneers of the LGBTQ+ rights movement in the United States. On this day in 2019, Marsha was posthumously honored as a grand marshal of the New York City Pride March,” wrote Google.
Marsha P. Johnson Rose To Prominence During The 1969 Stonewall Riots
Johnson rose to prominence as an activist back in 1969 during the Stonewall uprising. The Stonewall Inn was one of the few places in New York City where same-sex couples could be themselves. This was during a time when it was illegal to serve drinks to gays. Even same-sex dancing was prohibited.
However, the Stonewall Inn was something of a safe haven. This was mostly due to the fact that they would regularly pay off the police to avoid any trouble. That didn’t mean the Stonewall Inn was completely safe, though. The establishment still had to face the occasional raid.
Marsha P. Johnson Was The Founder Of Some Important Organisations
During one such raid on June 28, 1969, a police officer hit a lesbian in the head with a baton. A crowd had already gathered around the Stonewall Inn during this time. This police brutality caused the crowd to retaliate, throwing bottles at the police.
These riots eventually lead to large-scale protests across the U.S, in cities like New York, Los Angeles and Chicago. These protests are some of the first-ever Gay Pride Marches in the world. Marsha P. Johnson continued her activism well beyond these incidents. She co-founded the Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR) along with her friend Sylvia Rivera.