This weekend, I’m celebrating the final weekend of Pride Month in my This Is A Gay Sock socks from Bonobos.
Visibility of the LGBTQ matters. When the community is actually seen by society (as opposed to being unseen or invisible), people are able to see something represented, they’re better able to understand and grasp who those people are, and this creates an important shift in social consciousness.
This weekend is significant. We celebrate the 50th anniversary of Stonewall. On June 28, 1969, New York police raided the Stonewall Inn, the largest gay bar in the U.S. (at the time). Raids on gay clubs were common, but this time was different. Outside, protesters threw coins, then beer cans, and at some point, hurled bricks, fuel-filled bottles, and garbage bins at the officers inside. The first Pride march occurred one year later to commemorate the riots.
Fifty years ago, being gay was virtually illegal and anti-discrimination laws nonexistent. Every year since proves to be pivotal, especially now, as it’s met with the aggressive roll back of LGBTQ rights from the Tr*mp administration. I’m sad when I think back to the 2016 rally when he declared, “I will fight for you while Hillary Clinton brings in more people that will threaten your freedoms and beliefs.”
A few items to note…
Opposition to the Equality Act (H.R. 5); Transgender people were banned from serving in the military; Transgender people in federal prisons now housed by sex assigned at birth; Retracting plans to count LGBT people in the 2020 Census; Declining to appoint an LGBT liaison for the White House; Religious liberty policy could allow federal employees and federal contractors to discriminate against LGBT people; The Justice Department argued the Civil Rights Act of 1964 doesn’t protect gay workers from discrimination; State Department cancelled visas for unmarried same-sex partners of diplomats to the United States; Vice President Mike Pence has a history of discrimination against the LGBT community