It's officially June. For most people that means it's now summer. For about 10% of the population, it also means Pride month! Parades, vendors, drink specials, and amazing parties. And to think it all started because of a riot. On June 27th, 1969 patrons at the Stonewall in New York had their fill of repeated police violence and persecution. That night, some of the butch lesbians and drag queens, the outside fringe of what passwed for a queer community at the time, fought back when the police came in for their regular raid. They fought back when the cops tried to rough them up and drag them off to jail.
The next year, a parade was held to celebrate what most regard as the birth of the modern gay rights movement. And June has never been the same. For me, it's a chance to recharge my gay batteries. It's also a time to remember how far we've come. Colorado will now include employment protection for people based on sexual orientation OR gender identity. New Hampshire is now the first state to create civil unions without a judicial mandate to do so. It's amazing how our rights have expanded in the last 3 years, despite amazing opposition and political roadblocks.
There will be more to discuss about Pride over the next 30 days, but today's lesson is simple. Take a moment and simply be proud of who you are. Who you were. Who you have become. Obviously, anyone reading MY blog must be a cool person and deserves to be proud. And I'm proud of you. Gay, straight, lesbian, bi, queer, trans, or somewhere in between. Smart, simple, heavy, thin, bold, meek...it doesn't matter. Just be the best YOU that you can be. And revel in it.
There are still far too many in our country and in our world today who are not allowed to do so. People who are silenced, physically, spiritually, or metaphorically.
I'm SO proud of YOU!