Leaders and activists from all over the U.S.A., Canada and Mexico will be coming to San Diego this coming weekend for a meeting of the International Imperial Court Council, the governing body of the International Imperial Court System, which has chapters in over 69 cities in these three countries. The organization was founded in 1965 by World War II veteran Jose Julio Sarria who in 1961 became the first openly-gay candidate to run for public office in North America.
There will be a special announcement coming out of the San Diego meeting, the launching of a civil rights arm of the Imperial Court System: The National GLBT Network U.S.A. The recent national Women’s March drew Court members participating, not only in Washington, D.C., but in cities all across the nation.
“The next four years will be an especially critical time for the LGBT rights movement and our allies,” stated San Diego City Commissioner Nicole Murray Ramirez, the new national chair and the executive director of the National GLBT Network U.S.A.
The Imperial Court System within the United States has a long history of civil rights activism. During the 1970s when Anita Bryant launched her homophobic “Save Our Children” crusade in Dade County Fla., the Imperial Courts raised funds and sent them to the Anti-Bryant campaign in Florida. Imperial Court members were very active and involved in anti-homosexual ballot initiatives in Colorado, Oregon and California. In California, the Imperial Courts raised funds and were active against the Sen. John Briggs initiative to ban all homosexual teachers from teaching in public schools.
“We will be working with the National LGBTQ Task Force, the Human Rights Fund, the Victory Fund and other civil rights organizations” stated Scott Seibert, national vice-chair and deputy director from Portland Ore. “The next four years now more than ever all LGBT organizations, clubs and churches must get more involved in our continuing fight for equality.”
Membership in the National GLBT Network U.S.A. is open to all. For further information, please contact:
National GLBT Network U.S.A.
P.O. Box 33915
San Diego, CA 92163
The Imperial Courts organized and led the successful letter writing campaign and lobbying efforts that resulted in the Harvey Milk U.S. Postage Stamp and the U.S.N.S. Harvey Milk Ship.