Gay Mexico City

In every kiss a revolution


In 1991 I was hired by the Los Angeles-based magazine The Advocate to do an article about gay and AIDS activism in Mexico City. In those days, the capital was considered a zone of tolerance for homosexuals, compared to the cities of the conservative heartland. At the same time, gay bars were frequently raided. Cops would shake down the patrons, primarily closeted, and threaten them with exposure if they didn’t pay.




For the most part, lesbians didn’t even exist. Not in the open, anyway. They were mostly married women who had affairs with each other in secret, or those academic-librarian types whose sexuality did not appear quite determinate. There was one bar for gay women in the city, but by the time the article hit the stands it had closed down.




Things have changed in Mexico City. Particularly for younger people, who have grown up with the internet, and have access to so much more information than previous generations. On March 21st there was a lesbian parade in the center of the city. The sign at the forefront said, “In every kiss a revolution.”