Encyclopedia of African-American Culture and History. A number of drivers asked him to move to the back, according to Southern practice of Jim Crowbut Rustin refused. Want to stay abreast of changes in prevention, care, treatment or research or other public health arenas that affect our collective response to the HIV epidemic? While I have no problem with being publicly identified as homosexual, it would be dishonest of me to present myself as one who was in the forefront of the struggle for gay rights. Senator Strom Thurmond attacked him about them three weeks before the march. Arrested with Jewish activist Igal RoodenkoRustin served twenty-two days on a chain gang in North Carolina for violating state Jim Crow laws regarding segregated seating on public transportation. At the beginning ofReverend Milton Galamison and other Harlem community leaders invited Rustin to coordinate a citywide boycott of public schools to protest their de facto segregation.
Rustin "faded from the shortlist of well-known civil rights lions", in part because he was active behind the scenes, and also because of public discomfort with his sexual orientation and former communist membership.
According to Daniel Richman, former clerk for United States Supreme Court justice Thurgood MarshallMarshall's friendship with Rustin, who was open about his homosexuality, played a significant role in Marshall's dissent from the court's 5—4 decision upholding the constitutionality of state sodomy laws in the later overturned case Bowers v. Rustin said that "the movement to integrate the schools will create far-reaching benefits" for teachers as well as students. Muste had already tried to change Rustin's sexuality earlier in their relationship with no success.