Pride Month 2021

Pride+Month+2021

Nitya Wanchoo

Pride month has increased in popularity over the last couple decades, with events hosted to support the LGBTQ+ community in their mission for equality. Pride month is held in June, as a tribute to the Stonewall riots, and is essentially a month dedicated to members of the LGBTQ+ community to be openly proud of their gender identity and/or sexual orientation. 

The month of June is annually celebrated by the LGBTQ+ community as pride month. Now, with more of the population identifying as a member of the LGBTQ+ community than ever before, it’s become a peaceful opportunity to protest, remember the history of the LGBTQ+ 

community, and raise awareness for the current issues facing those that identify as LGBTQ+. Without doubt, there is still injustice in the discrimnation and violence that members of the LGBTQ+ have to face, but strides have been made in past decades and they continue to be made. This tradition of pride month encourages inclusivity and celebrates diversity. 

Pride month has come to be from the Stonewall riots, which was begun by prominent activist Marsha P. Johnson who was a black transgender woman in June of 1969. She is credited, among others, in being behind the history of pride month and for helping the LGBTQ+ community make strides in civil rights. The Stonewall riots were prompted by a raid that took place at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village, Manhattan. A diverse crowd of the LGBTQ+ community protested the raids and clashed with the police for the rights to be open about their gender identity and/or sexual orientation without the fear of being harassed or arrested. The violence went on for six days and fought hard for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. The effects of this were seen within the next six months, when two gay activist groups had been formed in New

York. From there, more organizations have been founded, internationally, to call for the civil rights of the LGBTQ+ community. Now, New York rallies commemorate the riots, and their influence on history by hosting some of the largest parades supporting all members of the LGBTQ+ community during pride month. The New York City Pride Parade, specifically, is one of the most popular parades and hosts 4,000,000+ people from all over the country each year. 

It goes without saying that pride parades are probably the most common event of pride month. They’re held in cities across the nation, such as New York, Capitol Hill, and San Francisco. People march in support of the LGBTQ+ community and often carry pride flags and wear rainbow colored clothing and/or accessories. The concept of Pride Parades began with Brenda Howard, often nicknamed, “The Mother of Pride”. Brena Howard has influenced much of modern day pride as she coordinated the first march and was the brains behind many of the LGBTQ+ celebrations now held annually in June. 

Nonetheless, pride parades aren’t the only way to celebrate and there are numerous other ways that people celebrate their pride during the month of June. Among parades, there are pride movie nights, runs, street parties, public speakings, poetry readings, and educational sessions that are covered by the media where support is rallied and people share their experiences. Given the pandemic, many of these typically in-person events are hosted virtually as well, via zoom and are fun and easy to participate in! For those that prefer more subtle ways to support the LGBTQ+ community, there are several pride organizations that can be supported via donating money. Additionally, many entertainment platforms have taken it upon themselves to offer LGBTQ+ representation. Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video all have genre pages for Pride month with pride movies, shows, documentaries, and they even highlight LGBTQ+ creators, actors, producers, writers, and filmmakers. Lots of people also suggest reading novels that highlight LGBTQ+ characters or books that explain the history of Pride Month and how to support the LGBTQ+ community. It’s also encouraged to incorporate pride into one’s workplace and reach out to the diversity and inclusion groups of one’s company to make sure that they are doing what they can to make sure that pride is celebrated. 

Regardless of how you celebrate, this Pride Month it’s important to keep an open mind and stay supportive of the LGBTQ+ community. Happy Pride!