In the times before recorded queer history,
our people lived openly in the lands that are now called
the Bay Area. But as the nuclear family replaced tribal
society, queer people were first marginalized, and then
forced off of the land, and intoThe City, where they
were prey to all manner of iniquity and rent gouging.
Queers were hunted and beaten and mutilated. We were
forced to meet in secret, and to deny our identity.
this period of persecution, queers were bouyed by God’s
promise that one day, they would return to the land
of sunshine, to the land of Berkeley, for it is written,
land of fruits and nuts ...
“And the Lord saw that the queer people
were harried in this land. And the Lord spake onto the
prophet Harvey, “You will lead your people across the
wide waters unto a new land.” Harvey was fearful,
and he cried to the Lord, “How will we cross
the wide waters? For they are cold, and they are filled
with all manner of hazardous substances and raw sewage
and other pollutants.” And the Lord responded, “fear
not, Harvey, for a great bridge will be built, and the
people will cross into this land. And this land will
be called Berkeley. I say, Lo, I have promised the land
of Berkeley to the lesbians and to the gays, and to
the bisexuals, and to the transgenders and to the intersexed,
and to all of the gender variant peoples. And this land
shall be blessed with fruits and nuts, unto 50 genderations.”
of Reclamations and Realty, 4.0
promise sustained us in our darkest hours ...
repeated this promise at the end of the annual closet
festivals, as they chanted, “Next Year, In Berkeley.”
In the 1940’s queers began to resettle in Berkeley.
A smoke shop on Bancroft Avenue sold lesbian pulp novels.
Queers began to gather at the I-House. In 1969 a Gay
Liberation Front was formed. In 1973 the first queer
community house, the Pacific Center, opened its doors.
In 1970, Gay Sunshine
began 12 years of publication, in fulfillment of the
prophesy, “For the Sunshine shall issue forth out
of Berkeley, and warm the Gay people, and they shall
1960, gay leaders began to promote the concept of a
homeland for homosexuals. “Return us to the land,” they
argued, “so that we may stop the depravity of our urban
lifestyle.” Just prior to his assasination, John F.
Kennedy was said to have offered some land in Eastern
Oklahoma. But the QueerNationists held to the historic
prophesy, that queers would some day return to settle
in all of Berkeley. Following the assassination of gay
leader Harvey Milk, San Francisco Mayor Diane Feinstein
signed the historic “Feinstein Declaration,” establishing
a queer homeland in Berkeley.
City and County of San Francisco
December 2nd, 1979
I have much pleasure in conveying to
you, on behalf of Her Majesty’s Government, the following
declaration of sympathy with the QueerNationists Aspirations
which has been submitted to, and approved by, the Board
“Her Majesty’s Government view with favour
the establishment in Berkeley of a national home for
the Queer people, and will use their best endeavours
to facilitate the achievement of this object, it being
clearly understood that nothing shall be done which
may prejudice the civil and religious rights of existing
Straight communities in Berkeley, or the rights and
political status enjoyed by Queers in any other county.”
I should be grateful if you would bring
this declaration to the knowledge of the Gay Liberation
Lea Miatello for
A City Without People, for People
without a city ...
1979, over 50,000 queer people have immigrated to QueerNation
Berkeley, to fulfill the promise. Where cattle had once
now stands a world famous university. Where there had
been undeveloped and parched land, there now stands
the mighty lake Anza. Empty single family homes and
apartment buildings now finally have occupants. For
God has said, “Suffer the queer children to come
unto me, and I shall give them Berkeley.”
If this doesn’t
make sense in Berkeley, how can it make sense in Palestine?
For more information on how you can oppose Israeli aggression
contact, QUIT! at (510)434-1304 or e-mail us at at firstname.lastname@example.org.