If you haven’t heard, June is the month for worldwide celebration of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender pride. This month, cities all over the world, including Boston, New York, San Francisco, London, and Berlin, hold LGBT pride events such as parades, marches, rallies, and commemorations.
June has been chosen as Pride Month in order to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which occurred in New York City on June 28, 1969. These spontaneous and violent riots took place after police raided Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in Greenwich Village. The bar patrons fought back after being arrested by the police, which was the first incidence of the homosexual community fighting back against governmental and societal prejudices. The Stonewall riots marked the start of the gay rights movement in the U.S., and inspired the creation of gay activist organizations, publications, and demonstrations. The first Gay Pride march was held in NYC in 1970, which continued in Los Angeles, Chicago, followed by many more cities the next year. These events have been influential to the development of LGBT Pride Month, and people around the world commemorate and celebrate these historical actions throughout the month.
In the United States, President Clinton was the first to declare June as “Gay and Lesbian Pride Month” in 2000, but in 2009 President Barack Obama changed the month’s title to include bisexual and transgender orientations. At the end of last month, the President once again declared this June as Pride Month in a statement from the White House. Yesterday, Hilary Clinton continued the commemoration with a video message on Youtube in order to advance freedom and equality to all people. “This month, and every month,” Clinton states, “we proudly reaffirm our commitment to making sure that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights” (watch the full video below).
To celebrate and commemorate Pride Month, check out your local parades or marches. Happy Pride!