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NYPD apologises for Stonewall raids 50 years on.

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“I think it would be irresponsible to go through World Pride month and not to speak of the events at the Stonewall Inn in June of 1969,” New York City’s police commissioner, James P. O’Neill said Thursday during an LGBTQ police event, according to The New York Times.

“The actions taken by the N.Y.P.D. were wrong, plain and simple,” he continued. “The actions and the laws were discriminatory and oppressive, and for that, I apologize.”

In recent years, multiple commissioners have refused to apologize for the now-documented violence that the LGBTQ community faced at the hands of New York City officers at the Stonewall Inn. In 2017, O’Neill originally declined to apologize, saying “I think that’s been addressed already," before adding, "we’re moving forward."

O'Neill's predecessor, Bill Bratton, acknowledged the year prior that there had been a "terrible experience" at Stonewall that became a "tipping point" and eventually led to "so much good." He added, "An apology, I don’t think so. I don’t think that’s necessary. The apology is all that’s occurred since then."

New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who is gay, had called for an apology from the NYPD in a Wednesday interview with Juliet Papas of the 1010 WINS radio program. Johnson said the police raid, which took place in the early morning hours of June 29, 1969, said such an act would be a show of "decency."

"The NYPD in the past has apologized for other incidents that have occurred, so I think the NYPD apologizing on this would be a very, very good thing, and it's something they should do,” he said. "I think it's never bad to apologize. One thing that personally I do, is if I think I've made a mistake, I try to say I'm sorry, I was wrong and I learn from that because I don't think there is anything wrong with admitting a mistake. It shows decency to recognize something that you may have done wrong."

Incidents that the NYPD have apologized for in the past include a “long overdue” public apology to a rape survivor whose 1994 complaint was met with skepticism by investigators. “We were wrong then,” O’Neill said in a statement on the police department website in October 2018. “I want us to be right today.”

In 2015, Bratton, New York City's police commissioner at the time, said he personally called James Blake, the former tennis star, to say sorry after Blake was tackled by a police officer after being racially profiled “I spoke to Mr. Blake a short time ago and personally apologized for yesterday’s incident,” a statement read.

Johnson had anticipated a similar apology as the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising neared. Stonewall is credited with being the most important event to spark the modern fight for LGBTQ equality in the United States.

"I would love for it happen this month and I will bring it up to the police commissioner," Johnson said Wednesday. "I will have a conversation with [the NYPD commissioner] about it because I think it would be an important step toward further healing and reconciliation and recognizing what happened in that crucial moment, and not just in American history, but New York history in June of 1969."

Pride's across the world are kicking off, with the launch of the Sydney Pride Festival last night at Sydney's own Stonewall Hotel, and celebrations across America and Europe will go through to August...  with the main festival in NYC for World Pride at the end of June.

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Sacked Radio Hosts apologise for Transphobic segment

Kimberly-BeckFormer Rochester, NY radio hosts Kimberly and Beck have issued an apology for their transphobic rant against transgender people during an on-air segment about city employees healthcare benefits that ended with being fired from their morning radio show on station 98.9

Said Kimberly and Beck in a statement:

We are very sorry for the hurt and pain we have caused anyone, especially those in the Transgender community and their friends and families. What we said and the manner in which we handled ourselves was wrong; we take full responsibility and we deeply apologize to any and all that we offended.

Our attempt was to discuss a controversial healthcare issue; however our lack of sensitivity and understanding of the Transgender people and their plight created 12 minutes of radio we that wish we could take back.

We fully understand ENTERCOM’s position and their decision to dismiss us. It is their right and we accept their decision and our responsibility in it.

ENTERCOM has been and will continue to be a strong advocate for the LGBT community and we are proud to have been helpful in ENTERCOM’s efforts over our 13 years with the company.

It is our hope that this situation can be a time of learning and understanding about the Transgender community and not a time for additional anger and insensitivity. This is a community of individuals who struggle painfully to be themselves and find the support and comfort they deserve. We believe that this can be a chance for all of us to stop the ignorance and find our humanity."
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