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A big piece of LGBTQ New York history will live on — for now.

The Stonewall Inn — facing an uncertain future after shutting down during the coronavirus pandemic — has raised more than $300,000 through a GoFundMe campaign and will additionally receive a $250,000 donation from the Gill Foundation.

“We’re so happy and thankful — it’s a wonderful thing,” co-owner Stacy Lentz tells The Post.

“It’s providing a lifeline, quite frankly, that we desperately need.”

However, the Greenwich Village institution — designated the country’s first historic LGBTQ landmark in 2016 — isn’t out of the woods just yet.

The site of the 1969 Stonewall Riots already was four months behind on rent — which runs more than $40,000 a month — even as NYC Pride festivities came to a close this past weekend. Being shut down for months at a time means no revenue coming in and expenses like insurance, utilities, inventory and more piling up.

Celebrities including former President Barack Obama, Taylor Swift, Demi Lovato, Katy Perry and Cynthia Erivo also took part in a two-hour livestream last Friday to help raise funds.

“The Gill money and the community support — these things will help us get through,” says Lentz, who says the $250,000 donation is specifically earmarked for rent. “A lot of people likely think, ‘Well, that’s a lot!’ But to be honest, there are a lot of costs involved.”

And while the bar starting selling “to-go” drinks about two weeks ago, that doesn’t bring in nearly as much money as a fully operating business. As such, Lentz says she doesn’t “see a foreseeable way out of this probably until there’s a vaccine” for COVID-19 and the bar can operate at 100% capacity again.

“We just don’t see a normal operating business until there’s a vaccine; it’s just not gonna happen,” she says.

In the meantime, Lentz says they will soldier on.

“We’re not going to let it die. We’re hopeful. We’re grateful,” she says. “It’s a living, breathing piece of history, and it just means so much to our community globally. We’re just trying to do everything we can to raise enough funds to make sure that we can get through no matter what’s thrown at us.”

Filed under Coronavirus ,  Coronavirus in NY ,  donations ,  gay bars ,  gay pride ,  lgbtq ,  stonewall inn ,  6/30/20 Share this article: Share this:
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    Viewpoint: What Donald Trump gets wrong about Somalia

    In our series of letters from African journalists, Ismail Einashe considers how Somalia has become caught up in the US election campaign.

    President Donald Trump is making Somali-American congresswoman Ilhan Omar one of the bogeywomen of his campaign for re-election to the White House in November - and by proxy her country of birth Somalia.

    In his most recent attack, at a campaign rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma, he tore into the 37-year-old alleging that she wanted to bring the "anarchy" of Somalia to the US.

    "She would like to make the government of our country just like the country from where she came - Somalia. No government, no safety, no police, no nothing, just anarchy. And now, she's telling us how to run our country. No, thank you."

    Ms Omar, who arrived in the US as a child refugee in 1995, is the congressional representative for Minnesota, which includes the city of Minneapolis where African-American George Floyd was killed by police in May, reigniting Black Lives Matter protests.

    Media playback is unsupported on your device Media captionCongresswoman Ilhan Omar spoke to Newsnight's Emily Maitlis about the George Floyd protests

    But it was Ms Omar's Somali heritage the president chose to focus on in Tulsa, perhaps to distract from all the turmoil and unrest closer to home.

    In response Ms Omar said his remarks were "racist". She added that his anger came out of a recent poll that had shown him trailing his rival, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, in her state, which is home to a large Somali-American community.

    GettyPerhaps the view of Somalia for Mr Trump and his supporters is still tarnished by events in 1993... when US troops launched a disastrous raid in the Somali capital"Ismail Einashe

    The president described Ms Omar as a "hate-filled, American-bashing socialist", warning she would have a role in shaping the country if Mr Biden were to win.

    This is despite the fact that the pair are on the opposite ends of the Democratic Party - Ms Omar had been a prominent supporter of Bernie Sanders to win the Democratic ticket.

    But such rhetoric plays well to his base, so the electoral stage has been set, the cast chosen - and Ms Omar and Somalia have starring roles.

    In fact they both debuted last year at Mr Trump's rally in North Carolina where the crowd chanted about Ms Omar: "Send her back! Send her back!"

    Media playback is unsupported on your device Media caption"Send her back" chants at Trump rally

    It echoed the "lock her up" phrase adopted by his supporters against his rival Hillary Clinton in the run-up to the 2016 presidential election.

    Ms Omar, who is a fierce critic of the president, had been in hot water at the time - censured by both Democrats and Republicans - for stoking stereotypes about Jews and had apologised for tweets implying US lawmakers only support Israel because of lobby money.

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    It seems Mr Trump's view of Somalia stems from the aftermath of the overthrow of Siad Barre in 1991, since when it has popularly been considered one of the world's most failed states.

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    This label has stubbornly stuck even as the situation has improved in the country.

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    Image copyright AFP Image caption Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed gave up his US citizenship to become Somalia's president

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    Image copyright Getty Images Image caption There are parts of Somalia that function well

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    Somalia's collapse, nearly three decades ago, dispersed Somalis around the world from the arctic circle to New Zealand.

    In the US, Minneapolis is home to one of the largest Somali diaspora populations in the world - a visibly black and Muslim community.

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    Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Ilhan Omar moved to Minneapolis, where there is a huge Somali community, as a teenager

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    Follow us on Twitter @BBCAfrica, on Facebook at BBC Africa or on Instagram at bbcafrica

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