Pride wasn’t originally a celebratory thing like it is now. It was actually a riot, the Stonewall Riots, which lasted from June 28th 1969 – July 3rd 1969. The riots took place in the Greenwich Village neighborhood of Manhattan, New York. The community was tired of not being able to exist without being prosecuted and was demanding change.
The way we know pride month now, a celebration for the LGBTQ+ community, isn’t actually how it started out.
Thus, the reason pride month is in June is because it commemorates the riots that happened at Stonewall. The first pride parade was on the one-year anniversary of the riots and it has been ongoing since.
Figures in the Stonewall Riots
Marsha P Johnson, a Black woman who was part of the community, is the most prominent figure of the riots. Though she wasn’t the only one who has made a huge impact on how the community exists today. Stormé DeLarverie, a Black woman who identified as part of the community, was another prominent figure. She also was an early leader in the gay rights movement. Sylvia Rivera is another name that is brought up in conversations.
Changes Since Stonewall Riots
Since 1969, lots of changes have happened for the LGBTQ+ community but there still is a long way to go. One change is that homosexuality is no longer in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manuel of Mental Disorders (MSD) as a disorder or illness. Though there are still things that the community faces. Which includes people who don’t agree with “the lifestyle” and people who want to cause harm to the community. It’s also known that there are countries that have things in place that affect the community, all of which are negative.
Positives Since Stonewall Riots
Though there is a plus side, all of the positive things that have happened since the Stonewall Riots. Big steps made in for those in the LGBTQ+ community. In many parts of the world, same-sex marriage is legal, with Costa Rica being the latest one to join the list, and there are at least a few other countries that do recognize same-sex marriage. June happens to be Pride Month. Though, there are parts of the world have their pride parade or festivities in other months. One example is several places actually hold their pride parade in the month of October. This is because National Coming Out Day just so happens to be in October.
Involvement with the Community
People can get with the community in many ways, individually or as a group. There are resources that help organizations to support and understand LGBTQ+ youth as well as organizations that are there to help the LGBTQ+ youth. You can go pride or any other LGBTQ+ events in your local area. And you can take a pledge to speak out about intolerance and hate that those in the LGBTQ+ community face. Those are just a few examples of what people can do to help support and uplift LGBTQ+ individuals.