Today the Obama administration announced the designation of Christopher Park, across the street from the historic Stonewall Inn, as the first national monument “dedicated to telling the story of LGBT Americans.” The Inn was previously designated a National Historic Landmark.
For decades, Stonewall has been a gathering place for the community in a sea of unsafe spaces. In the wake of the Pulse shootings in Orlando, thousands assembled in and around the Stonewall Inn at a vigil for the victims. And, in a video announcing the monument, LGBT activist Octavia Lewis described the importance of Stonewall. “We were being brutalized, we were being murdered, we were being ostracized in a sense,” she said. “Stonewall was a safe haven.”