Pride Month, to me, signifies a time to celebrate the diversity of humankind. In particular, the diversity of a segment of the population that has historically been maligned, misunderstood, closeted, and cast out just for being different from what society and religion has expected of them.
It is a time to celebrate how far we have come in having our identities accepted and affirmed. But it is also a time to reflect on what it has taken to get to this point and to realize how quickly these gains can be erased. We see that now in certain parts of the country where members of the LGBTQIA+ community are used as scapegoats to score cheap political victories against political opponents instead of politicians working to tackle real problems that affect people’s lives.
For my fellow members of the LGBTQIA+ community, I call on you to celebrate who you are. To be proud of who you are. And if you’re not ready to come out just yet, don’t worry, we’ll be here cheering for you until you feel ready.
For those who are not of the LGBTQIA+ community, celebrate with us, listen to our voices, and be there for us, especially in these troubled times. Use this time to learn about Pride. Learn about why events like Stonewall happened, and learn about all the people involved on that fateful night. Keep on educating yourself about the lives of LGBTQIA+ people and the struggles and adversity we continue to face even to this very day.
We’re here and we’re queer. We have always been here. We are still here. And we will continue to be here. Blessed be, and Happy Pride.