On Tuesday, July 15, Ambassador LeVine hosted a discussion led by Professor David Johnson, author of the book The Lavender Scare. The book describes the little know period in U.S. history when gay and lesbian employees of the Federal government were forced to resign or were fired in great numbers. The “Lavender Scare” in the 1950s and ‘60s paralleled the anti-communist campaign know as McCarthyism.
Guests were able to see a sneak preview of clips from the forthcoming documentary based on the book. The Swiss guests — largely LGBT activists and American studies students and faculty — discussed the phenomenon of scapegoating, the importance of revisiting historic events, and the enormous changes that had taken place in the U.S. in a relatively short period of time.