Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Remembering Legendary LGBT and HIV/AIDS Activist Elizabeth Taylor (1932-2011)

She was a legendary silver screen beauty;

an Academy-award winner;

a friend of Michael Jackson.

But Dame Elizabeth Rosemond Taylor’s most important role came in her later years as an ardent HIV/AIDS activist and ally to the LGBT community.

Following the death of friend and fellow thespian Rock Hudson from an HIV/AIDS-related illness, Taylor was among the founders of the American Foundation for AIDS Research (amfAR) and started the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF). In the process, Dame Taylor helped raise millions of dollars to fight AIDS. And, at a time when other stars stayed quiet, she became one of the first public voices to speak up about the AIDS crisis.

One of Taylor’s final tweets (yes, she was on Twitter): “ Give. Remember always to give. That is the thing that will make you grow.”

In that sense, Taylor had grown larger than the big screen she commanded.

And in this, we honor her life.

-Jen Jones, Equality North Carolina


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