On this day: Gay Liberation Australia, angry and proud

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09/05/2022

“Had I known at the age of 15 that my lesbianism could have been ‘cured’, I would have rushed to Dr McConaghy as my saviour,” wrote Lindy N. of Gay Lib in Tharunka on September 5, 1972. Lindy N. wrote to the University of NSW (UNSW) student magazine to dispute a previous letter from A.B. Blaszczynski. The now Professor Emeritus Blaszczynski was then an assistant to aversion therapist Dr Neil McConaghy. The week before he wrote to defend McConaghy’s ‘treatments’. On August 8, 1972, Gay Lib demonstrators incorporated street theatre into a protest against aversion therapy at UNSW. Alex Blaszczynski complained the protestors misrepresented aversion therapy. “The actions presented in the homosexuals’ ‘stage-act’ were a gross exaggeration of what actually takes place.” The professor obviously never majored in ‘Street Theatre as a Protest Form’. A scrupulous reenactment was never the aim.

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