elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Randy Burns

Randy Burns is a Northern Paiute native American and a member of the Pyramid Lake Indian Tribe. In July of 1975, along with the late Barbara Cameron, Burns founded Gay American Indians, an organization that serves the Gay and Lesbian Native American community.

Randy Burns' activist career started as an outspoken student leader while attending San Francisco State University trying to recruit Native American students to campus. He then became an activist for the queer community when, still as a student, he interviewed with the Nevada State Journal. His subsequent interviews with nearly all queer magazines and newspapers on the West Coast has earned Burns the reputation of "Media Queen." Randy has also written some of his own editorials, including the introductions to such books as Living The Spirit: A Gay American Indian Anthology, Changing Ones and Third and Fourth Genders in Native North Americans. Burns plans to publish his own full work of literature in the near future entitled You Never Heard Me Sing, a portrait of two spirit people.

Included on Burns' long list of activist work are positions on some prominent local government advisory committees such as the People of Color AIDS and the Human Rights Commission. Randy has also been an election officer for over twenty years, as he believes in the importance of voting. Over the years, Randy has volunteered his services to various nonprofit agencies and worked with many Native American programs here in the Bay Area. Up until recently, Randy worked at SF General Hospital as a nurse assistant.

For his work, Burns has been recognized numerous times, most recently with the "Pioneer Award" from the San Francisco Gay and Lesbian History Society. Yet, the modest Randy evokes his High School Hall of Fame induction as the award that he is most proud of. Randy is also very honored to have been photographed with one of his heroes, former President Bill Clinton.

@Lisa Kanemoto

@Lisa Kanemoto

Source: www.ncpc.info/projects_paiutefamily.html

Further Readings:

Living the Spirit, A Gay American Indian Anthology (Stonewall Inn Editions) by Will Roscoe
Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin (August 15, 1988)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 031230224X
ISBN-13: 978-0312302245
Amazon: Living the Spirit, A Gay American Indian Anthology

Joining a reclaimed past to a vibrant present, this work provides a broad view of male and female homosexuality in Native American cultural history through anthropological reports, biography, mission records, photographs, oral literature, diaries, interviews, essays, autobiographical excerpts, poems, and selections from novels. In the past, individuals whose behavior varied from tribal norms could adopt a variety of honorable roles: healer, artist, mediator, shaman. But homophobia saturates the modern Indian world. Contemporary voices (notably Roscoe, Beth Brant, Paula Gunn Allen, Maurice Kenny, and Chrystos) explain and dramatize survival despite chronic and ritualized oppression. Includes contacts, resources, a list of tribes, and a detailed bibliography. Recommended for subject collections. Rhoda Carroll, Vermont Coll., Montpelier. Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

-- Table of Poems from Poem Finder®
Some Like Indians Endure by Paula Gunn Allen
My Rug Maker Fine by Ben The Dancer
Her Name Is Helen by Beth Brant
Savage Eloquence by Chrystos [pseud.]
Today Was A Bad Day Like Tb by Chrystos [pseud.]
Your Body by Nola M. Hadley
Pima by Maurice Kenny
United by Maurice Kenny
Winkte by Maurice Kenny
I Have Picked A Bouquet For You by Richard La Fortune
Stepping Softly Among Memories by Carole Lafavor
Horseshoes by Joe Dale Tate Nevaquaya
O Mother Earth by Lawrence William O'connor
Children Of Grandmother Moon by M. Owlfeather
A Freedom Song by Tala Sanning
Coyote And Tehoma by Daniel-harry Steward
Charleen Just Never Came Back by Mary Tallmountain
Midnight Sun by Anonymous
Homelands And Family by Anne Waters
Journeys Of The Mind by Anne Waters
Wewoka Oklahoma-summer '85 by Anne Waters

More LGBT History at my website: www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Persistent Voices

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Tags: activist: randy burns, gay classics, persistent voices

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