Glenn Tkach – Really Gay Legal History (#30)

It’s a history of an entire society that became more accepting of the diversity within it. ~ Glenn Tkach

Glen Tkach (web) is a voiceover artist, storyteller and tour guide with the Forbidden Vancouver Walking Tours (Twitter | Instagram) company.

Glenn is also the creator of Vancouver’s Really Gay History Walking Tour, which he leads while wearing his bright pink hat. Here’s one description of the tour form the Forbidden Vancouver website:

Meet the unsung heroes of Vancouver’s LGBTQ2+ community who forever changed the social fabric of our country. From the steps of the courthouse where an infamous drag queen fought for federal decriminalization to the chapel where the United Church of Canada ordained their first openly gay minister, Vancouver has played a larger-than-life role in the queer liberation movement.

In this episode, Glenn invites us to visit a couple of spots on his tour and takes a deep dive into some of the major developments in Canada’s and Vancouver’s gay legal history – covering topics including racism, uses of criminal law against gay people, freedom of speech and censorship. As Glenn mentions in this conversation, the progression of the law in this area is not just a victory for gay society; it is a victory for all of society. 

Topics Covered

  1. Early “buggery” trials
  2. The intersection of homophobia and racism
  3. The use of criminal law to persecute gay people
  4. So-called decriminalization of homosexuality
  5. Social history of Little Sisters Book and Art Emporium v. Canada (Minister of Justice), 2000 SCC 69
  6. Obscenity, freedom of speech and the Charter
  7. Social aspects of the history of the law and gay people

Listen to “30 Glenn Tkach – Really Gay Legal History” on Spreaker.

The Quiz for this episode is here.

Pre-approved by the Law Society of BC for 1.7 hours of CPD credits.

Are you a member of a law society outside BC? Try here.


3:36 How Glenn describes his work

9:50 Visiting the current site of the Vancouver Art Gallery

12:00 Buggery, gross indecency

12:46 Persecution of Sikhs

18:46 The morality squad

22:45 Punishments for buggery offences

22:40 The Purge

29:00 Being outed during The Purge

33:30 “Decriminalization” of homosexuality

37:00 A shift toward views on homosexuality as a mental illness rather than as a crime

45:40 ted northe

49:40 The spinoff effects of decriminalization, including a police backlash

1:07:33 Little Sisters Bookstore and Art Emporium

1:13:00 Little Sisters Book and Art Emporium v. Canada (Minister of Justice), 2000 SCC 69 (CanLII), [2000] 2 SCR 1120

1:30:35 Creation of the Really Gay History walking tour

1:37:40 Reactions to the tour

1:40:00 The human side of gay legal history

Comments are closed.

Proudly powered by WordPress | Theme: Baskerville 2 by Anders Noren.

Up ↑