Loving Out Loud: LGBTQ+ Pride Month 2022

Posted by Contributor | Posted on June 5, 2022

Loving Out Loud: LGBTQ+ Pride Month 2022

By Shawn Evans Quiming
HAPI Scholar

Credits: Ben Hider/Getty Images

The LGBTQ+ community and its allies celebrate Pride Month in June, a month filled with colors, love, and… well, pride!

What is Pride Month?

Pride Month takes place every June to show respect and honor to members of the LGBTQ+ community. It’s a time for self-affirmation, community reflection, and intersectionality celebration. Film festivals, art exhibitions, picnics, meetings, and other activities mark Pride Month, a month-long celebration of LGBTQ culture, accomplishments, and activism. Through these acts, the community and its allies want to raise awareness about contemporary issues regarding injustice across the world.

A Pride-ful History

GLBT Historical Society / Courtesy of Andrew Shaffer

The rainbow flag, designed by artist Gilbert Baker in 1978, is globally-recognized for being a symbol of LGBTQ+ pride, but did you know that each hue has its own meaning and symbolism? Red signifies life, orange represents vitality, yellow symbolizes sunshine, green signifies nature, blue represents harmony, and purple represents spirit. (The original eight-color flag had hot pink to represent sex and turquoise too!)

It’s okay to stay in your closet if you are just not sure yet about how you want to live your life

Being openly homosexual was virtually illegal in most nations in the late 1960s. The mere presence of a gay or genderqueer person was deemed disruptive behavior in New York, for example. The Stonewall Inn, a gay club in New York City that was raided by the police on June 28, 1969, became the trigger for Pride Month. Crowds gathered in protest at the Stonewall Inn in the days that followed, resulting in bloodshed and riots. Pride Month is much more than rainbows and partying (though we must enjoy ourselves!). It’s past time to raise awareness of the LGBTQ+ community and advocate for equal rights.

A Humble Opinion

As a 15-year-old straight kid, I believe that honoring, acknowledging, and elevating LGBTQ+ voices is critical, as they face homophobia, prejudice, and unfairness. They are also human beings who experience pain and deserve happiness. Allow them to express themselves and rejoice in their lengthy journey to social acceptability. Pride Month is an important time for members of the LGBTQ+ community to voice their demands for social justice and fairness.

I have gay and lesbian friends, and I’ve heard them say that it’s difficult to come out of the closet because they’re worried about not being accepted in their homes or in our society, and they’re afraid of being judged by their friends and family because of their sexuality. This demonstrates the people who are constantly afraid of being identified in society and of expressing their sexual orientation without fear of being judged or facing hate crimes. It’s okay to stay in your closet if you are just not sure yet about how you want to live your life – go for it, figure yourselves out, and come out when you’ve made the right choice.

Since the Stonewall Riots of 1969, the LGBTQ+ community has come a long way. However, we must continue to promote awareness, fight negative views, celebrate sexual and gender variety, and support inclusion. Pride Month supports LGBTQ+ people’s dignity, equal rights, and self-affirmation, as well as raising society’s awareness of the difficulties they confront. Let us all rejoice and live and love loudly.

Credits: Angela Weiss/AFP via Getty Images

 

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About The Author

Shawn Evans Quiming

Shawn Evans Quiming is a HAPI Scholar!

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