US legislator proposes bills to establish a LGBTQ+ history museum



Wisconsin Democrat Mark Pocan has introduced two bills aiming to establish a national museum devoted to LGBTQI+ history and culture. The bills propose the creation of a commission to study the feasibility of the museum and subsequently establish it within the Smithsonian Institution. Previously in 2013, a similar proposal had been made by former Smithsonian researcher Tim Gold and his husband Mitchell Gold, but the project did not materialize.

The end of LGBTQI+ History Month may see the start of a National Queer History Museum

Mark Pocan works towards creating an LGBTQ+ history museum (Canva)

Openly gay Wisconsin Democrat Mark Pocan has introduced two bills for the creation of a national museum dedicated to LGBTQ+ history and culture, marking the close of the LGBTQI+ History Month in the US. Pocan, a long-time LGBTQ+ rights campaigner, also chairs the Congressional Equality Caucus.

This is not the first time a national LGBTQ+ museum has been proposed in the US. A similar proposal was made in 2013 but did not materialize.

The proposed National Museum of American LGBTQI+ History and Culture would be established within the Smithsonian Institution. The bills aim to set up a commission to study the museum’s potential and then establish it.

Democrat Mark Pocan (Caroline Brehman/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

“As our community faces unprecedented attacks and attempts to erase our history, we must preserve and protect our stories for future generations,” Pocan said in a statement.

“We need to remember our collective past, especially when some states and Members of Congress try to constrain and repeal our rights. Let’s honor LGBTQI+ contributions with a museum in Washington, D.C. I look forward to the passage of this legislation and visiting this museum soon.”

The first bill would create an eight-member commission of experts in museum planning and LGBTQ culture. They would conduct an 18-month study on the feasibility of the museum, develop a fundraising plan, evaluate acquisition costs, and submit a plan of action to Congress.

The second bill, considered after the commission completes its study, would formally establish the museum.

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