Founded in May 1990, OutRage! is the world's longest-surviving
queer rights direct action group. We fight homophobia.
Our witty, imaginative, daring and innovative style of nonviolent
civil disobedience has elevated activism into an art form:
protest as performance.
Some of our best known political spectacles include
the Queer Valentine's Carnival, Kiss-In, Queer Wedding,
Exorcism of Homophobia, and Queer Remembrance Day.
How many protesters can fit in a pulpit?
Easter Pilgrimage to Canterbury, 12-April-1998;
©1998 David Hoffman
For permission to copy this picture, contact David Hoffman Photos
OutRage! ambushed the Prime Minister's motorcade two days after Parliament voted
to maintain a discriminatory age of consent in 1994,
and invaded the Vatican Embassy and Westminster Cathedral to protest at the Pope's
support for antigay laws.
More recently we disrupted a performance of the
Romanian National Opera at the Royal Albert Hall,
drawing world attention to Romania's persecution of queers.
We also scaled the walls of Lambeth Palace,
confronting Archbishop George Carey over his opposition to gay priests
and same-sex partnership rights, and disrupted his Easter Sunday sermon
in Canterbury Cathedral,
(after which Peter Tatchell was
tried under an 1860 law for "indecent behaviour" in a church,
and subsequently fined £ 18.60).
10 Bishops, "Tell the Truth" -- Image: Steve Mayes
In 1994 OutRage! named ten Church of England bishops and asked them to
"Tell the Truth" about their sexuality.
This generated more public discussion of gay issues
than any gay protest ever conducted in Britain,
and resulted in the Church issuing one of its strongest ever condemnations
of homophobic discrimination.
We began our high-profile campaign against police harassment
of the queer community in 1990.
Within three years, convictions of men for consenting gay behaviour
fell by two-thirds. Direct action works!
Westminster Cathedral, 1992 -- Image: Steve Mayes
Unapologetic and provocative, OutRage! aims to challenge antigay discrimination,
confront the perpetrators of homophobia face-to-face,
promote the public visibility of queer issues,
and set a radical agenda for sexual freedom,
(which will ultimately benefit everyone --
gay, straight, bisexual and transgender).
Cenotaph 1995 -- Image: Steve Mayes
Rejecting the assimilationist and conformist politics of the
mainstream gay movement, OutRage! has pioneered a critical attitude towards
the values, laws, and institutions of straight society.
Equality is important, but is not enough.
Equal rights alone inevitably means equality on straight terms,
within the status quo. We want to change the system, not conform to it.
Why should queers want to be part of oppressive straight institutions
such as marriage and the armed forces?
Equality Now, 1992 -- Image: Steve Mayes
"Portillo screws queer soldiers" banner in Parliament Square
Image Copyright: Steve Mayes, 1996
Invoice to New Labour, 1997 -- Image: John Hein, ScotsGay Magazine
OutRage! seeks to transform society.
We are campaigning for an Unmarried Partners Act,
to give legal rights to all unwed couples, gay and straight.
We also advocate an Equal Rights Act,
to protect all citizens, including queers,
against discrimination, harassment,
and incitement to hatred.
While we oppose military homophobia,
we also oppose military authoritarianism and human rights abuses.
HELP FUND THE FIGHT FOR FREEDOM
T-SHIRTS AND BADGES
©1999, OutRage! London
Last modified: 25-September-1999