Margaret Thatcher Dead At 87

margaret-thatcherMargaret Thatcher, Britain’s first female prime minister and the reason behind Meryl Streep’s third Oscar, has passed away from a stroke at age 87.

“It is with great sadness that Mark and Carol Thatcher announced that their mother, Baroness Thatcher, died peacefully following a stroke this morning,” a statement from her spokesman, Lord Tim Bell, said, referring to her son and daughter.

The Iron Lady was a controversial figure in many respects, including, LGBT rights. PinkNews writes:

Despite some controversy around Section 28, which in 1987 banned the teaching or promotion of homosexuality and was passed under her government, Baroness Thatcher supported legalizing homosexuality in the 1960s, in the face of fierce opposition from Tory traditionalists.

In 1967, she voted in favor of the decriminalization of homosexuality, in England and Wales. While she was Prime Minister, it was made legal to be legal to be gay in Scotland in 1981 and in Northern Ireland in 1982.

Thatcher also appointed the Earl of Avon, who was widely known to be have been gay, as Under Secretary of Energy in 1983 and then of State for the Environment before he died from AIDS in 1985.

But for her good, there was always a share of the bad.

In October 1987, Thatcher attacked “positive images” of gay people during her speech at the Conservative Party Conference saying she worried that children “are being taught that they have an inalienable right to be gay.”

Calling her “extraordinary for mostly the wrong reasons,” LGBT activist and political campaigner Peter Tatchell didn’t “rejoice in her death” but he didn’t pull any punches either.

“During her rule, arrests and convictions for consenting same-sex behaviour rocketed, as did queer bashing violence and murder,” Tatchell said. “Gay men were widely demonised and scapegoated for the AIDS pandemic and Thatcher did nothing to challenge this vilification. ”