February 15th People

February 15th

02-15-1820 – 03-13-1906 Susan B. Anthony – Born in Adams, Massachusetts. She was an American social reformer and feminist who played a pivotal role in the women’s suffrage movement. Born into a Quaker family committed to social equality, she collected anti-slavery petitions at the age of 17.  In 1851, she met Elizabeth Cady Stanton. Her deepest relationships were with other women and she never married. She was said to be the “third person” in the marriage of Stanton, her longtime companion with whom she traveled for three decades giving speeches. Anthony’s feminism and quest for equal rights for women and blacks was the first plank in the platform women were building for social justice in America.In 1856, she became the New York state agent for the American Anti-Slavery Society. Her first treatise on women’s suffrage noted, “ Universal manhood suffrage, by establishing an aristocracy or sex, imposes upon the women of this nation a more absolute and cruel despotism than monarchy; in that women finds a political master in her father, husband, brother, son. The aristocracies of the old world are based upon birth, wealth, refinement, education, nobility, brave deeds of chivalry; in this nation, on sex alone; exalting brute force above moral power, vice above virtue, ignorance above education, and the son above the mother who bore him.”

02-15-1907 — 01-01-1994   Cesar Romero – Born in New York City, New York. He was an American actor, singer, dancer, and vocal artist. He was active in film, radio, and television for almost 60 years. In 1935, Romero played a leading role in The Devil is a Woman opposite Marlene Dietrich. In the 1960s classic TV show, Batman Romero played the Joker. Romero never married and was described as a “confirmed bachelor.” He appeared frequently at Hollywood events escorting actresses, such as Joan Crawford, Linda Darnell, Barbara Stanwyck, Lucille Ball, Ann Sheridan, Jane Wyman, and Ginger Rogers. Many historians and biographers have speculated on Romero being closeted about his sexuality. According to stories he told author Boze Hadleigh for the 1996 book Hollywood Gays, he had a wide-ranging gay sex life. Because he was “out” to all his entertainment industry colleagues, it was also stated the Romero’s homosexuality was Hollywood’s worst kept secret. In 1946, Romero and Tyrone Power went on an 8-week vacation in Power’s private plane. They traveled to Mexico, Central, and South America. Romero died in 1994 from complications of a blood clot. 

02-15-1934 – 05-25-2005 Graham Kennedy – Born in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. He was an Australian entertainer, radio, television, and film performer. Kennedy is the most awarded star of Australian television and was known as The King of Australian television. Kennedy was closeted, though it was an open secret within the Australian television community, the subject was not discussed openly until after his death. Rob Astbury, a former top Australian Sportscaster, published King and I: My Life with Graham Kennedy, recounting his 20 year relationship with Kennedy.

02-15-1952   Bill T. Jones – Born in Bunnell, Florida. He is an American choreographer, director, author, and dancer. Jones is the co-founder of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company. Jones has choreographed major performing arts ensembles and contributed to Broadway and other theatrical productions. He has been called “one of the most notable, recognized modern-dance choreographers and directors of our time.” In 1971, Jones met and fell in love with Arnie Zane. The couple had a personal and professional relationship that lasted until Zane’s death from AIDS in 1988. Since 1993, Jones has been with Bjorn Amelan. They are now legally married. ( Top Photo of Jones & Zane – Bottom Photo of Jones & Amelan)

02-15-1968 Richard Blanco – Born in Madrid, Spain. His family were Cuban exiles that moved from Spain to Miami when he was an infant. He is an American poet, public speaker, author, and civil engineer. He is the fifth poet to read at a United States presidential inauguration. He read his poem, One Today, for Barack Obama’s second inauguration. He is the first immigrant, the first Latino, the first openly gay person, and the youngest person to be the U.S. inaugural poet. In the poem Queer Theory, According to My Grandmother, he described how his grandmother warned him as a young boy. “For God’s sake, never pee sitting down…/I’ve seen you” and “Don’t stare at The Six-Million Dollar Man./I’ve seen you” and “Never dance alone in your room.” He and his partner split their time between Bethel, Maine and Boston, Massachusetts.

02-15-1985 Natalie Morales – Born in Kendall, Florida. She is an American actress and starred in the ABC Family series The Middleman. Feature films she has appeared in include Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps and Going the Distance. Morales also had a recurring role on the NBC sitcom Parks and Recreation. On June 30, 2017, Morales came out on social media that she identified as queer. She plays the role as Rosie Casals in the film Battle of the Sexes that was released in September 22, 2017, starring Emma Stone as Billy Jean King and Steve Carell as Bobby Riggs.

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