June, deemed Pride Month, is a month to…

photo by Larry Morris, The New York Times

June, deemed Pride Month, is a month to celebrate the LGBTQ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Questioning) community, learn about the inequities it still faces, and show one’s pride for the community. It has been observed annually without fail in cities and towns around the country through parades, festivals, concerts, and service projects that engage communities in the spirit of pride. Chicago, Seattle, and New York, among numerous others, boast month-long calendars of events, lectures, marches, parades, parties, and picnics to demonstrate their pride. Last year, Seattle alone attracted upwards of 350,000 attendees to its myriad of events in the month of June. In Chicago, the Annual Pride Parade, which takes place in the East Lakeview neighborhood the last week of the month, is the culmination of the month’s celebrations, covering several miles on the north side of Chicago.

The riots at the Stonewall Inn in June of 1969 in New York City were a major catalyst in the LGBTQ movement for equal rights. Outrage and action among the LGBTQ community, leading to the famed riots, was incited when the Stonewall Inn, a popular gay bar, was raided by the police with no provocation. June has since stood as an iconic month of public demonstration and social activism. Last month, what has become an historic event, President Obama declared his support for same-sex marriage on national television. His definitive stand could be the catalyst for major strides in LGBTQ civil rights.

– Colin