Before the Stonewall Riots, Missouri was the heart of gay rights activism in America.
In 1966, at least 40 people from 15 LGBTQ groups met in Kansas City for a two-day conference to form the National Planning Conference of Homosexual Organizations. A local newspaper called it “the first national concerted effort of organizations composed of homosexuals or concerned with their problems.”
One of the complaints came from Uriah Stark, a legislative aide to Republican state Rep. Mitch Boggs. He had posted his objections to the exhibit Tuesday on Facebook, saying the museum was “pushing the LGBT agenda.”
In a follow-up post Wednesday, he celebrated the exhibit’s removal by thanking two legislators and writing, “To God be the glory!”
Razer later tweeted that the people who work with him know that he is much more than just the “gay Senator,” but he will “fight like hell” against people who attack the LGBTQ community and use the state government to “erase us.”
“I can’t believe [Missouri State Parks] acquiesced to such small-minded bigotry,” he wrote. “I expected more of a backbone.”
The exhibit was organized by students in the public history program at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and consisted of banners with messages documenting the work of early LGBTQ+ rights organizations in the city. It has been displayed around the state since the students assembled it in 2017, and there is an online version with extensive information.
Those who serve with me know I’m much more than just the “gay Senator.” But I’ll fight like hell when people attack the LGBT community & use state government to erase us. I can’t believe @mostateparks acquiesced to such small-minded bigotry. I expected more of a backbone. #moleg
— State Senator Greg Razer (@SenGregRazer) September 2, 2021