Queer Nation-Houston
Clippings & Info

Plus some ACT-UP Coverage

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1991 (January to July)

1991 (This Page, July-August)
1991 (Sept to Dec)
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Paul Broussard coverage

The three posters and the pink flyer below are courtesy of the Botts Collection
These were street posters, 11" x 17"

Take Back the Streets

     

Cary Anderson and "James", a pseudonym, were the two companions with Paul Broussard on the night of his murder,
and they are interviewed for "Nightmarish attacks haunts lives of gay friends", from the Houston Post, below.
Anderson describes previous incidents of homophobic harassment -- unrelated to the 1991 attack - on the streets,
such as verbal abuse and being pelted with eggs. Broussard himself had been a target in one such incident.

Anderson further states, in a second Houston Chronicle article "5 Woodlands teens held, 5 sought in `gay-bashing' case",
below, that on the night of the murder: "[T]here were three of us together", and "[w]e just assumed we'd be safe enough."

In yet another article from the Chronicle, "Gays in Montrose live in fear of attack on the streets", below, activist
Robert Bridges recounts homophobic harassment at the Westheimer Arts Festival - a bottle was thrown at him
and a friend. Bridges notes, in a sentiment very common among LGBT folks in the early 1990s: "We live with it (danger)
all the time. If you had a roomful of people at a party, I'd be surprised if you found someone it hadn't happened to." Further:

Several gay men said they will drive for 10 or 15 minutes until a parking spot close to their destination becomes
available. Some said they will return home and take a taxi back to a club rather than park too far away.

All of this indicated the prevalence of - and, within the LGBT communities, consciousness of - such harassment, to the
degree that people routinely took precautions, as best they could, to avoid being bashed.
These understandings were not widely shared outside of those communities.

The political response to the Broussard killing, by Queer Nation-Houston and other LGBT organizations, was the first time
this serious problem had been successfully highlighted for the general public locally. From 1986-1990, for example, there had been
a number of antigay killings in Houston, but those usually received little coverage in mainstream newsmedia outside the LGBT communities. (PM)
Here are some instances:

- Marion Pantzer 1986, shot to death in her community bar.
- Debbie Marie Koss, killed over an argument concerning gay rights in 1987.
- William Wayne Price, 1987.
- Thomas Hammerton, 1989, stabbed to death.
- Michael James Burzinski, 1990 shot in the back of the head.


More David Embry Photos:

  

Above left, Michael Crawford on far right

  

Above left, David Embry in front. Above right, John Paul Barnich at far right

  

Above left, John Paul Barnich pushing wheel chair. Above right, Brian Bradley, with tutu.

  

Above right, Lesley Perez and mother Sylvia Ayers with ACT-UP signs; also lower left

  

Above right Brian Bradley with tutu, Troy Christiansen and John Bourgault

  

  

The 'Take Back the Streets' demonstration was one of the largest ever organized by Queer Nation Houston,
drawing out, as this article indicates, about 2,000, with 1,200 blocking the intersection of Montrose at Westheimer
in an act of nonviolent civil disobedience.

Other large events include the second-anniversary 'Take Back the Streets' demonstration in 1992 and the
main march, organized by QN-Houston and ACT UP chapters from around the country, against the
Republican National Convention held in Houston later that year.
(PM)

TWT-071991 PDF (click to download)

 

   

In the aftermath of Paul Broussard's murder, Ray Hill, per this article, was planning a citizen's patrol
for Montrose, tentatively called "Peacemakers". Q-Patrol started, shortly thereafter, as an affinity group
within Queer Nation-Houston and ultimately became an fully independent organization. (PM)

   

In the wake of the bias killing of Paul Broussard, the Houston Police Department began an undercover effort
ultimately known as Operation Vice-Versa. This article notes:

Although gay-bashing has occurred in the past, [HPD Captain] Adamson said the present undercover operation,
designed to draw out such behavior, is the first of its kind in the city.

As detailed in both the Houston Chronicle and The New Voice article from August 9-15, 1991,
"Police working sting attacked by 'gay bashers'," officers "posing as gay" were attacked in three separate
incidents over a single weekend. This was one indication of the homophobic violence common at the time.
Further, this evidence - coming from an institutional, establishment source - was required for those skeptical of the prevalence of bashing. (PM)

Find Much More on Paul Broussard Murder
At This Link

On the More August to December 1992