Friday, September 23, 2011

Screaming Queens: The Riot at Comptons Cafeteria

Dr. Susan Stryker: "What really happened that night a Compton's Cafeteria, has been all but forgotten. It wasn't a cat fight between screaming queens; it was a riot and it kicked off a new movement for human rights. In 1995 I stumbled across an article in the archive of the gay and lesbian historical society that described an event that I'd never even heard of - the riot at Compton's Cafeteria. The story had been written down several years after the fact and I wasn't sure if it was accurate or even true, but if it was, that riot might represents the transgender community's debut, on the stage of American political history." 


"I tried every way I could to verify that story. I scoured the archive looking for clues and I searched the streets of the tenderloin for people who might remember what happened that night.  When I finally pulled it altogether, the story was even bigger than I imagined."


Screaming Queens - The Riot at Compton's Cafeteria from Laurie Lezin-Schmidt on Vimeo.