NEW YORK, New York (The Adobo Chronicles, Washington Bureau) – President Barack Obama announced Friday he was designating the Stonewall Inn in New York City and surrounding areas as the country’s first national monument to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) rights.
“This week I’m designating the Stonewall National Monument as the newest addition to America’s national park system,” Obama said in a video released by the White House. “I believe our national parks should reflect the full story of our country — the richness and diversity and uniquely American spirit that has always defined us, that we are stronger together. That out of many, we are one,” Obama said.
The White House said the monument would encompass Christopher Park, the Stonewall Inn and the surrounding streets and sidewalks that were the sites of the 1969 Stonewall uprising.
A police raid on Stonewall Inn made history in 1969 when patrons fought back. The arrest of many Stonewall patrons that day prompted people to protest outside the bar for weeks, leading to the first march for gay and lesbian rights in July of 1969. Those protests are credited as the turning point for LGBT rights in the United States.
Following the Obama announcement, Stonewall Inn and Bar informed its patrons that it will stop serving alcohol immediately in deference to it being designated as a national monument.
National Parks Service rules prohibit the consumption of alcohol in designated national parks and monuments.
Non-alcoholic drinks will still be served, according to Stonewall Inn.