A History of Pride Month:
Stonewall Inn in Greenwich, NYC was a bar frequented by members of the LGBTQ community during the 20th century. On June 28, 1969, police officers from the NYPD raided the bar (as gay bars such as Stonewall were often raided), arrested several employees, and attempted to enforce a law against anyone who was not wearing at least 3 articles of gender-appropriate clothing. On that day, however, angry individuals began to speak out against police brutality towards the LGBTQ community. Over the next 5 days, rioters and police fought, the bar was set on fire, and the protest against LGBTQ discrimination was born.
In honor of the events during the Stonewall Riots, June has officially been recognized as Pride Month. During this month, there are events like parades, speeches, and performances with the purpose of bringing awareness to the need for greater equality for the members of the LGBTQ community and celebrating the identities of those who celebrate it.
Why It’s important to Show Pride:
In Brunei, a small nation in Asia, human rights are being violated by the law. The Sultan of Brunei mandated laws that can enforce death by stoning towards citizens who are part of the LGBTQ community. The sultan is one of the richest political figures in the world, and even owns several hotels in the US. The sultan holds so much power and wealth, but actively and publicly persecutes the LGBTQ community.
In most of Africa and Asia, same-sex marriage is still not legal.
Under the Trump presidency, as of 2019, transgender people are not allowed to serve in the US military.
According to Reuters Health, LGBTQ adolescents are more than 35 percent more likely to attempt suicide than their heterosexual peers.
How You Can Show Pride:
Boycott brands/companies/establishments that are anti-LGBTQ.
In 2017, Chick-fil-A donated almost $2 million to anti-LGBTQ groups.
The chief marketing officer of the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show said that the annual show does not have transgender models because they can’t sell a fantasy.
Go to Pride events.
Show that you are willing to support the LGBTQ community by showing up at a local event.
Understand that different people have different journeys and experiences with their sexual orientation or identity. Be respectful of the use of pronouns and don’t discriminate.
Speak out against anti-LGBTQ speech, advocate for better equality worldwide, be active, and be concerned. Everyone can celebrate Pride Month, no matter how they identify. But respect and responsibility should extend beyond the month of June and beyond social circles.