They would ask if I was a man or a woman. They could arrest a woman for impersonating a man, so you had to be sure you were wearing three pieces of women’s clothes. You learned to avoid the police by walking on the side of the street where the cars were parked, or in the opposite direction on the one way streets so they would have to back up to get to you. It was always in the backs of our minds that we could be arrested. Any woman wearing pants was suspect.
Jackie, a lesbian who lived in New Orleans during the 1950s, quoted in Odd Girls and Twilight Lovers: A History of Lesbian Life in Twentieth-Century America