Why We Celebrate Pride

A look back on Stonewall ‘69 and forward to the present and future of the LGBTQ+ movement

The uprising of the Stonewall riots in 1969 sparked a liberation movement, a call to action that continues to inspire us to live up to the promise of equality and justice for all. The LGBTQ+ community has fought a long, long battle for equal rights, and this is why we have Pride. 

Each year in June, Pride Month is celebrated around the globe, commemorating the riots against police raids of the LGBTQ+ community in New York City. In the past, the American constitution criminalized homosexuality, leading the police to invade and harass queer bars as such Greenwich Village’s Stonewall Inn. But on June 28, 1969, the LGBTQ+ community decided to fight back. Their protest went on for several days, gaining support from various corners of the world. This brought a revolutionary change in the world and paved the way for the modern fight for LGBTQ+ rights. 

This month is all about honoring the identities within the LGBTQ+ community and their presence in society. On the surface level, colorful parades, marches and concerts are held across the world to celebrate gender diversity. On the deeper level, however, there are serious issues still to be fought for, including equal rights to start families, to get married, to adopt children, the protection against hate crimes and discrimination—to exist without fear

Since the pandemic hasn’t officially come to an end, this year, celebrations are likely to take place virtually for most communities around the world. We can also expect to see many celebrities and artists put their platform to good use and offer vocal, visible support to the community, whether they are members of it themselves or allies. Artists like Hayley Kiyoko, Halsey, Lil Nas X, Lady Gaga, The Aces and Clairo, just to name a few, allow us to celebrate who we are with their music as well as the campaigns they have launched to educate the public on the damages caused by homophobia or suppressing one’s true identity.

Pride is a time to rejoice in how far the LGBTQ+ community has come and both the trials and triumphs we’ve experienced. But it is also a reminder of how much more there is to go in the fight for full equality. Let’s keep our foot on the pedal so that one day, we can achieve true justice for all.