Larry Kramer

3rd Jun 2020

There is a poignant irony in the death of Larry Kramer amid the ravages of a global plague. One of the most consequential social activists of the second half of the 20th century, Kramer, who died last week of pneumonia at the age of 84, made his mark as the Cassandra of HIV/AIDS. Gay Men’s Health Crisis (GMHC), the very first organization dedicated to fighting what was then a mysterious disease killing mostly young, healthy homosexual men, was founded in his Greenwich Village apartment in 1982. “1,112 and Counting,” his clarion call in the New York Native to “scare the shit out of” its readers, still sends shivers almost four decades later. ACT UP, the direct action group that shut down the New York Stock Exchange and disrupted mass at St. Patrick’s Cathedral with condom-throwing antics, was kicked off with a fiery Kramer speech in 1987.

Finish reading this piece in Tablet.

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