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Your guide to Pride Month

By Ayana Archie, Brandon Griggs and Bukky Babalola

Published June 20, 2018

“Pride Month” is when the world’s LGBTQIA — lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (or questioning), intersex and asexual — community comes together to celebrate freedom.

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During Pride Month, parades, marches, festivals, dance parties and other events commemorate the Stonewall riots and honor LGBT heroes and history.

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However, Pride Month is more than the compelling costumes, the seven colors of the rainbow, the heartwarming smiles and festivities.

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How did it all begin?

On Saturday, June 28, 1969, police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York city, which led to riots and further protests from members of the LGBT community.

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A few months after the Stonewall riots, activists Craig Rodwell, Fred Sargeant, Linda Rhodes and Ellen Brody proposed a New York City march to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the raid.

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American bisexual rights activist, Brenda Howard, who planned the march, is credited with popularizing the word “Pride” for these festivities.

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When did "Pride Month" become mainstream?

In 1999, former President Bill Clinton declared June to be “Gay and Lesbian Pride Month.” His successor, George W. Bush, did not continue this tradition.

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Former President Barack Obama declared June to be LGBT Pride Month. In 2016, he declared the area around Stonewall Inn as the country's first national monument to LGBT rights.

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May I participate in Pride events if I’m not a member of the LGBTQIA community?

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Yes, you can! Pride is always open to allies who want to participate, show support and observe respectfully.

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