Student visitors to Philly reenact gay protest of 1965

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A university class from the Midwest passed through Philadelphia yesterday on a two-week tour of historic sites in the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender equal-rights movement.

When their red-and-white bus, adorned with the University of Wisconsin badger mascot, pulled up in front of Independence Hall, Mark Segal, publisher of the Philadelphia Gay News, had a surprise for them.

He passed out hand-drawn picket signs, and asked the class to reenact the nation's first gay-rights protest, which was staged on that site in 1965.

With a news photographer taking pictures, Segal declared: "The only people here taking pictures in 1965 were the police and the FBI." The early protests were ignored by the media, he said.

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