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The Boston Globe

Metro

Protest challenges ban on blood donations by gay men

There were no rainbow flags flying, no posters demanding equality, no kiss-ins, no marches through the streets to the sounds of Lady Gaga. In the aftermath of the gay rights movement’s biggest victory so far came a quieter protest over a smaller issue: the ability to donate blood.

On Friday, gay men in 53 cities across the country lined up outside Red Cross centers to give blood, and to get turned away, intentionally. Since 1983, the Food and Drug Administration has banned gay and bisexual men from donating, a policy activists and, on June 18, the American Medical Association, say is discriminatory and reflects outdated medical assumptions.

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