What Pride Means to Us

Erin Shetler

As many already know, June is National Pride Month. To celebrate pride this year, the LHS Rainbow Alliance, including myself, have written this paper to tell the history of pride and share what pride means to us.

While the history of the LGBTQ+ Community spans across humanity, Pride celebrations are relatively new. The modern Pride Celebrations began in 1970 as a means of commemorating the Stonewall Riots that took place in late June 1969. At the time, the festivities were limited to scattered parades that occurred under significant amounts of fear. Throughout the 1970s, the parades continued and began growing into a larger movement, adopting the Rainbow Flag and creating many LGBTQ+ groups around the nation. In the 1980s and 1990s, there were a number of cultural changes that helped transition the movement from “Gay Liberation/Freedom” into “Gay Pride.” and in 1999, President Clinton officially declared June 1999 “Gay & Lesbian Pride Month.” Regardless of political proclamation, Pride Month has continued to take place in June in remembrance of early members of the LGBTQ+ movement and all that they fought for.

“Pride month has always been very special to me. Seeing all of the flags and signs makes me feel like I belonged and that I’m not alone. Pride is one of the few times throughout the year that I don’t have to be ashamed of being me.”

“Pride is hope. Hope that one-day things will be different for the better. Hope that all will be able to live their own life. Hope that the losses of the past have helped create a more inclusive future. Hope that everyone can stand up tall and say “I’m Proud of who I am.” But most of all, pride is the hope that no one will need to apologize for who they are.”

“Pride is a way that people express themselves through colors.”

“Pride is a way to make friends, express oneself, and find true identity. Pride is colorful, amazing, and wonderful.”

Being prideful is often a bad trait, although it is commonly called hubris. The pride that we as a club and as a global community have is anything but negative. Pride means so much to millions of people across the globe. It is the time that people from every background can come together and lift each other up. Whether you are part of the LGBTQIA+ community or are an ally, We sincerely hope that everyone can find a way to safely celebrate pride this year.