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Advocate
    (February 21, 1955-August 5, 2012)
    Born in Chicago, Illinois
    Birth name was Jack Fertig
    Gay rights and AIDS awareness activist
    Member of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence (1980-85)
    Ran for the San Francisco Board of Supervisors (1982)
    His full 'religious' name was Sister Rose of the Bloody Stains of the Sacred Robes of Jesus.
    During his Board of Supervisors campaign, he listed his occupation as 'Nun of the Above.'
    He started a campaign for mayor against Dianne Feinstein, but dropped out when San Francisco passed a law requiring candidates to use only their legal names on the ballot.
    He performed a 'ritual exorcism' of Jerry Falwell. (Classified as 'Annoying' on the grounds that it clearly didn't work.)
    His reason for leaving the Sisters: 'I was tired of being the whipping boy for San Francisco being a weird town.'
    He changed religions from Catholic to Episcopalian to Islam.
    He made his living as an astrologer.
    He named his cats Leather and Latex.
    As a child, he attended civil rights demonstrations with his parents.
    He said about high school, 'You know how oafs hang around and choose one kid to call a fag? I was that kid.'
    When he told his parents he was gay, his father reacted by buying him a subscription to Playboy.
    As a performer at the Sluts-a-Go-Go drag revue, he stole the show singing 'Don't Sit Under the Apple Tree' in flawless Russian.
    He said about dressing in drag, 'It's taught me more about the oppression of women than any polemic. If every legislator had to wear high heels, fake eyelashes and a zipper up the back, we'd have the E.R.A. passed by Thursday.'
    Cleve Jones of the NAMES Project AIDS Quilt called him 'a fierce advocate for the poor and immigrant communities.'

Credit: C. Fishel


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