The Rise of a Global Movement

By Filip Terlecki  Photo: Bettye Lane

Having previously worked for History Television I’m always extremely interested in the genesis of things and events. How did something come to be?

Recently I watched a very interesting documentary on PBS called the Stonewall Uprising (directed by Kate Davis and David Heilbroner) which told the story of how the Stonewall riots led to the gay rights movement in the United States. So, in light of the fact that it’s Pride Week in Toronto I though it’s worthwhile to share.

What were the Stonewall riots? Wikipedia gives a pretty spot on summary:

The Stonewall riots were a series of spontaneous, violent demonstrations against a police raid that took place in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn, in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of New York City. The demonstrations are frequently cited as the first instance in American history when people in the homosexual community fought back against a government-sponsored system that persecuted sexual minorities, and they have become the defining event that marked the start of the gay rights movement in the United States and around the world.

Check out the trailer…

It’s really a fascinating look at the spark that began a global movement.

The riots weren’t planned, they just spontaneously happened. And although they were started by only a few the greater movement was sustained by the masses.

People were pissed off by the status quo and they decided to do something about it.

Same goes for the rise of Greenpeace, the French New Wave filmmakers in the 1960’s and the Solidarity Movement in Poland.

Times are different today. But they’re not necessarily better. There are a lot of issues and things that we are all pissed off about.

So, the question is – what are you pissed off about? What will you do about it? And how will your actions improve the world?

[like] [tweets]