words Al Woods
Rainbows, rainbows everywhere. In case you haven’t noticed, June marks the celebration of Pride Month. It’s that one month of the year when members of the LGBTQ+ community can have their shared histories and identities on full display, showing the world that being a part of this diverse community is no reason to hide.
Pride Month is also when major cities hold events like the Pride March in which the LGBTQ+ community, allies, and the general public can participate in a spectacle of equality, dignity, and acceptance. From waving colorful flags to wearing personalized lanyards designed with representative color schemes, there are a lot of ways to be loud and proud when celebrating that one month of the year when the LGBTQ+ community can own the spotlight.
Even though laws have been passed to ensure more visibility and rights for the LGBTQ+ community, celebrating Pride Month is still necessary to bring the dialogue a step forward and allow us to look back at how far we’ve come. To gear you up just in time for Pride Month, here’s why this monthly celebration of identity still matters.
Pride Month Commemorates LGBTQ+ History
The history of Pride Month takes root in defiance. If you’re wondering why Pride Month is celebrated every June, it’s because of a certain event in history called the Stonewall Uprising. In June 1969, a black transgender woman named Marsha Johnson spearheaded an act of resistance by fighting back during a police raid at New York City’s Stonewall Inn. LGBTQ+ people were not legally allowed to meet and hang out in bars, and Stonewall Inn was one of the few places where members of the community can safely congregate. A month after, a bisexual woman named Brenda Howard planned the Christopher Street Liberation Day March near the site of the riots, kicking off a tradition that is still being celebrated today.
June 27 marks the celebration of Global Pride Day when parades, marches, and concerts are in full force all over the world.
Pride Month Raises Awareness
Everyone is well aware of the fact that LGBTQ+ people exist and that they have the right to live freely despite being in the minority. However, Pride Month offers a chance for people to know more about the community, how far history has come, and how far it can still go. Pride Month instills the idea that the are steps being made toward progress, and we can take part in contributing to the good side of history.
Other than raising awareness of current issues, Pride Month is also a way to raise awareness of victories. Pride Month is a chance to shed light on wins such as the election of openly gay politicians or having more LGBTQ+ representation in media. Additionally, members of the community and allies can call the attention of local politicians taking part in Pride festivities to recognize these struggles and successes that could serve as a basis for more progressive policies.
Pride Month Offers Safety for the Community
Pride Month is a time when the community can come together and celebrate without fear of being shamed and ridiculed. Large-scale events like the Pride March allow members of the community to do something as small as holding hands with a same-sex partner, which ould result in mocking stares and disapproving lookscircumstances. There is safety in numbers, and the togetherness of Pride events allows people of any identity to walk down the street without worrying about who they offend.
One important thing to remember is that Pride events do not discriminate. Anyone can join in to support the LGBTQ+ community regardless of race, gender, and sexual identity. Onlookers, closeted individuals, and reluctant supporters are welcome to immerse in the spectacle and potentially go home with a different, more accepting view on things.
Pride Month Encourages Future Generations
Throughout history, members of the LGBTQ+ community have faced struggles that only the strongest people can endure. These people know what it’s like to be persecuted because of their identities and fight to make sure that the cycle stops with them. Showing the younger generations that it’s fine to be a little different will help raise a kinder, more understanding society that normalizes and respects LGBTQ+ lifestyles.
By recognizing Pride Month, we are actively letting future generations know that we are trying to build a better world for them.
Celebrating With Pride
Pride Month doesn’t stop with Pride Marches and t-shirts. Pride Month should be a time to remind each other, regardless of gender and preference, that we have a right to express who we are and what we love. It’s a time to remind each other to stand up for those that are being treated lowly because of the lives they choose. By remembering what Pride Month stands for, we can continue giving support even once the parades and marches are over.