Anita Bryant was a singer in the early ‘60s, but she’s probably best known for her Florida orange juice commercials in the early 70s. She could’ve just got her big juice money and lived a quiet life. Instead, she used her fame to strip basic human rights away from gay people.
And while trying to criminalize being gay was not new in the 70s, she’s the one who took it mainstream. The impact of her hateful campaign can be seen in the current “Don’t Say Gay” bill in Florida and the laws around the country targeting drag shows.
Sources for this episode:
- The Daily Beast
- NBC News
- The Slate podcast “One Year: 1977 – Anita Bryant’s War on Gay Right”
- Washington Post
Trigger warnings: Homophobia