Oral history with John David "JD" Nathanson, 1993--

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Oral history with John David "JD" Nathanson, 1993--


A native of Rhode Island, JD came to Washington, D.C., to attend Georgetown University. He discusses his activism in Rhode Island before coming to Georgetown, gay social patterns among young men in D.C., and attending being present at Supreme Court for DOMA and DADT repeals. Discuss limits of cis-gender male culture.


<a href="/items/browse?advanced%5B0%5D%5Belement_id%5D=40&advanced%5B0%5D%5Btype%5D=is+exactly&advanced%5B0%5D%5Bterms%5D=7+December%2C+2015">7 December, 2015</a>


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John was born in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1993, and grew up there, raised in Conservative Judaism. His high school and home environment were liberal and open, and he came out to his family at 16. John moved to Washington, D.C., to attend Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, where he graduated in 2014 with a Bachelor of Science in foreign affairs.

John says he is mostly involved in D.C.’s LGBT community through his friends and social scene. During high school and early on in his college years, John was involved with activist groups in Rhode Island: AIDS project Rhode Island, the Rhode Island LGBT Youth Center, and Marriage Equality Rhode Island. In D.C., however, he hasn’t been involved with organized activist groups, although he was at the Supreme Court when DOMA and DADT were repealed. He would like to participate more in LGBT/queer activism, but isn’t interested in working for major organizations like HRC, which he feels is cis-centric and overlooks some important issues that could be better addressed by grassroots organizations.

Although his involvement with the LGBT community in D.C. is mainly social, John feels that this socializing can be seen as political. He describes going out with openly LGBT friends as a “performative” and defiant act. However, he also feels that his gay social circle is somewhat limited in that it is made up mostly of white, cisgender, men like himself, and wants to broaden his conception of D.C.’s LGBT community. John feels that it is essential for young LGBT people like himself to know their histories and value the people who came before them and fought for their rights.

Oral History Item Type Metadata


<a href="/items/browse?advanced%5B0%5D%5Belement_id%5D=2&advanced%5B0%5D%5Btype%5D=is+exactly&advanced%5B0%5D%5Bterms%5D=Joseph+Servidio%0D%0A%0D%0A">Joseph Servidio



<a href="/items/browse?advanced%5B0%5D%5Belement_id%5D=3&advanced%5B0%5D%5Btype%5D=is+exactly&advanced%5B0%5D%5Bterms%5D=John+David+%22JD%22+Nathanson">John David "JD" Nathanson</a>


Washington, D.C.




“Oral history with John David "JD" Nathanson, 1993--,” Rainbow History Project Digital Collections, accessed May 27, 2022, https://archives.rainbowhistory.org/items/show/1625.

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