Can a Historic L.A. Bar’s Queer History Still Demand Justice?
Photographs from the Black Cat Tell the Tale of a Movement’s Muddled Origins—And Where It Might Go
The round face of a cartoon cat—big eyes, earnest smile—still hangs off the front façade of the Black Cat in Silver Lake.
Today, it peers out from above the kind of gastropub where you can order a $16 cocktail, easily fitting in with this gentrifying part of Sunset Boulevard, once known as a working-class Latino neighborhood and gay enclave. By the end of this year, the space next to the Black Cat is slated to become a Shake Shack, joining the likes of luxury supermarket chain Erewhon a block west.
Fifty-five years …