AIDS research has come a long ways since the days of G.R.I.D. (Gay Related Immune Deficiency) and "gay cancer," and it's safe to say that we owe most of that progress to ACT UP.
Formed in 1987 by activist Larry Kramer (the group's de facto ringleader) and a close-knit group of followers, ACT UP (i.e. the AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power) helped revolutionize both AIDS drug research and doctor/AIDS-patient interaction. Focusing most of its energy on making drugs available to more AIDS patients, ACT UP set a standard for every future activist group to come after it.
In order to pay homage to Kramer and the rest of ACT UP's leaders, New York magazine recently put together a series of archived photos of key ACT UP members (Plus: current photos of those members still alive.) Some of the interviews accompanying the pictures are quite revealing and moving. Click to read more.