The world celebrates International Pride Day every June 28. June is eminent as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer (LGBTQ) or Pride month to commemorate the incredible Stonewall riots back in 1969. The history of impartiality and equivalence was twisted when police invaded the famous bar, Stonewall Inn in June 1969. It was a regular raid though, but this time it was not endurable by its famous clients. Therefore, revolutionary Stonewall riots took place in New York.
Since then, rainbows have spread throughout June as streets and sky are colorful all month. The victory in 1969 abetted people recognizing the significance of their equal opportunity and reverence in society. The riots were not the first. In 1924, the fight for equality began, with the foundation of the Society for Human Rights in Chicago and many more after that.
One would ask, what is the need to glorify the LGBTQ community? What is Pride Month? Before assuming anything, we should know the struggles of the community. To explain these struggles, a mere instance of Alan Turing is enough.
He was the father of computer technology and artificial intelligence, a great mathematician, a code breaker, and what-not. He was one of the heroes of World War II. As he allegedly reduced the war by two years by cracking the Nazi code. Sadly, after his relationship with a 19-year-old policeman in 1952 came out, he lost credibility. Estrogen was injected into his body to neutralize his libido. This was another act of humans shattering all limits of human brutality. He had two options, one is Chemical castration and another is Prison. But the marooned man picked the former one. Disheartening news broke out in 1954, that he died from cyanide poison.
Denied Rights Since Forever
There are numerous occurrences of such heinous acts of hatred and bigotry of humans against humans which melts one’s heart. People belonging to the LGBTQ community have achieved a lot but that is not enough for their survival with dignity. They are victims of sexual abuse, and their physical, mental, and emotional health is usually a target as well.
Youth belonging to the LGBTQ community has succumbed to more emotional glitches such as extreme levels of stress, anxiety, depression, and many more. The stigma attached to their sexuality by society, the discrimination and separation from the families, ill-treatment, and attempt to cure this, so-called “disease” accelerate the suicidal rate amongst LGBTQ youth. They have to deal with isolation, disrespect, and dishonor from their heterosexual peers regularly. According to data by the National Center for Biotechnology Information, 62% of LGBTQ people suffer from problems such as rejection or exclusion by their families. Apart from this, the mental state of well-being is also directly proportional to the inappropriate and insensitive names called by heterosexual society.
Furthermore, the unfair treatment, viciousness, police brutality, and harassment by their intimate partners has become a new normal. The children of this community have abstained from education. According to NCBI, more than 56% of children are found to discontinue their school due to their sexuality.
Not only they are refrained from education, but gender discrimination by society forces them to marry unwanted partners. They are more prone to drug abuse to stabilize their mental health.
On another hand, people belonging to this community have achieved so much for their inclusivity. Gay movements were very profound in society. Sally Ride was the first female astronaut of America was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. She later came out as a Lesbian. There are many more people like Sally and Alan who have their different personalities and success stories belonging to the LGBTQ community.
People need to understand sexuality is not a disease first of all, which can be cured through some religious practices. It is the true identity of a person who needs acceptance. Many countries enforced laws for their equal rights but the societal stigma still harms their health.
Coming back to the question, Pride month celebrates sexuality, with no bias. To end the homophobia, persecution, exclusion, brutality, and torture, both heterosexual and homosexual people do Pride marches taking colorful flags symbolizing love spread all across. The whole month marks positivity, diversity, love, and individualism. The parades and various other events happen to spread awareness to eliminate the stereotypes in society and to fight the remaining battle of acceptance.
Imagine a person discriminated against all their life just for being different from the majority. Let us be considerate and support people who choose to be distinct. It is for all of us, to make this a better place to live. Next time you get a chance, stand in solidarity with these people, trying to make a change!