Happy Pride Month! June 1st starts a month-long celebration to recognize the activism, achievements, contributions, and impact people from the LGBTQ+ community have made on our society. It also serves as a time to bring awareness and educate us on the inequities and ongoing concerns many from the LGBTQ+ community face in our country and abroad.
Pride Month is observed in June to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots where police raided a gay club called the Stonewall Inn in New York City on June 28, 1969, and patrons and supporters fought back and staged an uprising to resist police harassment and persecution. According to the Library of Congress, it was considered a “tipping point” for the gay liberation movement in the United States and served as a catalyst for the fight to outlaw discriminatory laws and practices that members of this community were constantly subjected to.
Bill Clinton was the first U.S. President to officially recognize June as Gay and Lesbian Pride Month in 1999, but his successor, George W Bush, never recognized it in his eight years in office. However, Barack Obama followed Clinton’s example declaring Pride Month every year he was President. Donald Trump for the first time recognized LGBTQ Pride Month in a “tweet” during his third year in office and launched a global campaign to decriminalize homosexuality and invited all nations to join in the effort. President Biden, on his first day in office, signed an executive order directing federal agencies to protect LGBTQ people under all federal laws that prohibit discrimination based on sex.
While these are just a few facts about Pride Month, I urge you all to visit the sites listed below to educate yourself and gain perspective on the challenges people from the LGBTQ+ community often face and join Newday in celebrating their dignity, equality, and the human rights they all deserve. This month should also serve as a reminder of the importance of being an ally for this community all year round. Happy Pride Month!
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