Origins of Pride Month

Pride Month celebrates the diversity of the LGBT communities of the world and has its roots in social movements in the 1960's. Photo Credit: Gabe Nuanez

A look at the history that makes Pride Month a time of support, strength and hope

Estephany Haro

El Observador

The month of June is known as the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Pride Month (LGBT Pride Month). It commemorates the LGBT community who is still fighting for equality across the United States. However, Pride Month came specifically after the 1969 “Stonewall riots” in Manhattan.

It all started when in June 28, 1969 the police raided a Gay club called Stonewall Inn in New York City, in that time the Gay community had become tired of the police who had been targeting gay clubs. The majority of the Gay clubs were closed down due to discrimination and raids. However, this riot became a tipping point as the streets turned violent, sympathizers began rioting against the New York Police Department, unleashing riots across the country.

According to History, the crowd on the street watched quietly as Stonewall’s employees were arrested, but when three drag queens and a lesbian were forced into the paddy wagon, the crowd began throwing bottles at the police. The officers were forced to take shelter inside the establishment, and two policemen were slightly injured before reinforcements arrived to disperse the mob.

This incident was the beginning of the Gay Liberation Movement across the U.S. and until this day, Equality Marches are being organized across the United States in support of the LGBT community and the struggles that they go through every day. As the new administration didn’t help the community when it dropped the previously incorporated LGBT rights page from the White House website, and removed LGBT questions from the 2020 U.S. Census.

Across the country people came out to support the LGBT community on The Equality March on June 11, the streets of Washington D.C. and New York were full with people rallying for equality. In San Jose, The Equality March for Unity and Pride took place at Cesar Chavez Plaza where colorful picket signs had a clear message for politicians.

San Jose’s Mayor Sam Liccardo, Vice Mayor Magdalena Carrasco and U.S. Reps. Zoe Lofgren (D-San Jose) were some of the politicians that showed up to the rally to support the demonstrators and the cause.

However, LGBT History Month is celebrated in October according to The Library of Congress. In 1994, a coalition of education organizations in the U.S. designated October as LGBT History Month. In 1995, a resolution passed by the General Assembly of the National Education Association included LGBT History Month within a list of commemorative months. LGBT History Month is also celebrated with annual month-long observances of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender history, along with the history of the gay rights and related civil rights movements, such as, National Coming Out Day celebrated on October 11.