I was 19 years old when I met Craig Rodwell. He was 26. It was just after Thanksgiving in 1967, shortly after he’d opened the Oscar Wilde Memorial Bookshop on Mercer Street near the New York University campus.
One day in the shop — considered to be the first literary gay bookstore — the beat cop stopped by to tell us we needed to pay him off each week. Craig told him we wouldn’t pay; a few days later we had a break-in and the cash box was taken. For Craig, it was an opportunity to make the connection between police corruption and prejudice, a topic that he would bring up time after time in the shop’s newsletter, “The Hymnal.”
This was the backdrop to our lives in late June 1969, when we were on our way home from a Friday night dinner with friends in Washington Square Village.… Seguir leyendo »