New York: ACT UP / WHAM! . Offset. 8 ½ x 11 in. Near fine. . Item #6378
Flyer for ACT UP and WHAM!’s (Women’s Health Action Mobilization) infamous Stop the Church action. Stop the Church was ACT UP’s most contentious, scandalizing, and successful action.
The demonstration targeted Cardinal John O’Connor, the Archbishop of New York, for his opposition to condoms, safe sex education, abortion, needle exchanges, and other essential components of women’s and LGBT healthcare. The images of hundreds of homosexuals and people with AIDS interrupting mass by screaming, chaining themselves to pews, rejecting and spitting on sacraments, heckling important Church officials, and being carried out of the cathedral in handcuffs proliferated worldwise. As the first images of people with AIDS as active instigators of history and their lives rather than passively suffering horrible deaths, the protest generated sustained worldwide media coverage.
A rare document of ACT UP’s most polarizing action and turning point for the organization and the larger AIDS rights movement that further demonstrates how information spread both within the organization and to sympathetic supporters. .