What common goals did American Indians, gay and lesbian citizens, and women share in their quests for equal rights? How did their agendas differ? What were the differences and similarities in the tactics they used to achieve their aims?

The common goals of American Indians, gays and lesbians, and women in their quests for equal rights were often better legal protection and more recognition in society. They often did this through public protests and by becoming more active in politics. American Indians sought more local and tribal sovereignty. Gays and lesbians wanted to legalize their sexual orientation.

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Throughout the latter half of the 20th Century, these different groups all actively advocated for their civil rights in the United States. Much of their motivation was inspired by the successes of the African American civil rights movement. They used similar tactics and strategies. They sought larger recognition of their...

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Throughout the latter half of the 20th Century, these different groups all actively advocated for their civil rights in the United States. Much of their motivation was inspired by the successes of the African American civil rights movement. They used similar tactics and strategies. They sought larger recognition of their place in American society and appreciation for their contributions. These groups also sought legal protections against discrimination. Advocacy groups lobbied legislatures to push for legal protections.

One common tactic used was conspicuous public protests and marches. They organized large public gatherings and protests in Washington DC, state capitals, and other high profile locations. This brought their issues into the public sphere and made it impossible for politicians and the public to ignore them.

The goals of Native Americans differed somewhat from those of women and LGBT groups. Instead of fighting for full integration, most Native American advocates fought for more local sovereignty from the federal government and wanted to have their land and tribal rights recognized and protected.

A difference for early LGBT+ advocates was that they were literally fighting for the legalization of their identities. Until recent decades, homosexual behavior was criminalized in many places. LGBT+ advocates ramped up efforts in the 1970s to normalize their sexual orientation in society at large. They also fought to have the American Psychiatric Association remove the classification of homosexuality as a mental disorder. Members of the LGBT+ community became more active in politics; during the 1970s, the first openly gay politicians were elected.

Like their LGBT+ counterparts, many women's rights advocates sought public office. Throughout the 1970s, more women politicians were elected than ever before. While they fought for large measures, such as the Equal Rights Amendment, they also advocated for more directly actionable accomplishments. Women achieved gains such as more battered women’s shelters and laws to eliminate workplace discrimination.

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