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June is PRIDE Month

The month of Junewas chosen for LGBT Pride Month to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which occurred at the end of June1969. As a result, many pride events are held during this month to recognize the impact LGBT people have had in the world.

The following 10 items to know came from https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2018/05/31/things-know-about-lgbtq-pride-month-this-june/rIDJZoaZOOq1V2otbrivvJ/story.html

1. There are multiple Pride events in New England this month.Boston’s festivities begin June 1 and will continue through the following week, with the parade and festival June 9 and block parties happening June 9 and 10. Provincetown, long a destination for LGBTQ families and visitors, will have its first Pride event June 1-3. Celebrations will continue across New England through the month.

2. In Boston, Pride comprises 10 days of events.The 48th annual Pride Parade kicks off Saturday, June 9, at noon in Copley Square and runs through the South End before arriving at a festival on City Hall Plaza. The Pride festival will be held Saturday, June 9, on City Hall Plaza from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. and includes a number of performances, exhibits, and food options. There will be block parties June 9 and 10. But each day of June leading up to that weekend, there will be activities each day, including the AIDS Walk, a Harbor Cruise, Pride night at Fenway, and block parties. Boston Pride has an up-to-date scheduleon its website.

Participants in the 2017 parade carried a rainbow flag up Beacon Street.
JOHN TLUMACKI/GLOBE STAFF/FILE
Participants in the 2017 parade carried a rainbow flag up Beacon Street.

3. Similar events will be going on across the country.Throughout the month, several cities will have their own Pride events, including these.

4. It’s no coincidence that these events are in June.Nor is it a coincidence that so many cities hold their events at the end of the month. On June 28, 1969, patrons at the Stonewall Inn, a bar in Greenwich Village for the LGBTQ community, resisted a police raid. That event is often considered the beginning of the modern LGBTQ rights movement, not just in New York City but in the United States. A year later, the Christopher Street Liberation Day Committeecommemorated the Stonewall riots with the Gay Pride March. In 2015, The Stonewall Inn was nameda city landmark. A year later, it was dedicatedas the first national monumentto gay rights. The Stonewall Inn and the night that made it iconic were featured in the 2015 movie “Stonewall,”though it was criticized for focusing on a fictional cisgender white male character rather than black and transgender activist Marsha P. Johnson, who was considered instrumentalin the riots.

 

The Stonewall Inn in Manhattan's Greenwich Village in 2015.
BRENDAN MCDERMID/REUTERS/FILE 2015
The Stonewall Inn in Manhattan’s Greenwich Village in 2015.

5. Boston and Massachusetts played significant roles as well.A year after the Pride March in New York, activists marched in Boston in June 1971. A few years later, the Gay Community News was founded. The newspaper, headquartered on Bromfield Street, became an influential weekly newspaperwith national reach and a reputation of exclusive reporting on gay issues in the 1970s.

Statewide, Massachusetts contributed several LGBTQ firsts. Elaine Noble was the country’s first openly gay state representative. US Representative Gerry E. Studds was the first openly gay member of Congress after he was outed in 1983. Congressman Barney Frank was one of the first politiciansto come out publicly. And in May 2004, Massachusetts was the first state where same-sex couples could get legally married.

6. The rainbow flag that’s associated with the LGBTQ movement debuted at a Pride event 40 years ago this year.It was at a Pride parade in San Francisco that Gilbert Baker unveiled the first flags, which originally had eight colors. Baker, a self-described “gay Betsy Ross,” had become known among his circle of friends for his creative banners. Before the 1978 Pride parade, San Francisco city supervisor and gay rights leader Harvey Milk asked Baker to create something to represent the movement. With help from volunteers, Baker made flags, with each stripe carrying its own significance: pink for sex, red for life, orange for healing, yellow for sun, green for nature, turquoise for magic, blue for peace, and purple for spirit. The flag was later edited to six colors because of the expense of pink fabric.

In 1978, Gilbert Baker hand-dyed and stitched together eight strips of colored fabric, creating an international symbol.
SPENCER PLATT/GETTY IMAGES/FILE 2016
In 1978, Gilbert Baker hand-dyed and stitched together eight strips of colored fabric, creating an international symbol.

7. A new variation of the flag debuted in Philadelphia last year. Philadelphia’s Office of LGBT Affairslaunched the #MoreColorMorePride campaign “in support of racial diversity, equality and inclusion in the LGBTQ neighborhoods of the city.” This included a new flag that had the six colors that had endured for decades, plus black and brown stripes. Reaction was mixed, with some people hailing the move as inclusive of people of color, and others called the changes unnecessary.

8. June 26 has taken on significance.The US Supreme Court has issued some important decisions affecting the LGBTQ community, all on June 26. On June 26, 2003, a 6-to-3 ruling struck down state laws against sodomy. On June 26, 2013, the Supreme Court struck down a key portion of the Defense of Marriage Act on a 5-to-4 vote. That same day, the Supreme Court also ruled that backers of Proposition 8, which banned same-sex marriage, lacked standing to defend the 2008 law because California’s governor and attorney general declined to defend the ban. And on June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court declared that same-sex couples have a right to marry anywhere in the United States. At the time, same-sex marriage was allowed in 36 states. The court’s ruling meant the remaining 14 states, in the South and Midwest, would have to stop enforcing their bans on same-sex marriage.

Gay rights activists reacted outside the US Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C., on June 26, 2013.
MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/GETTY IMAGES/FILE 2013
Gay rights activists reacted outside the US Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C., on June 26, 2013.

9. June is not the only month that cities have Pride events.If you can’t make it to any of the events in June, there will be Pride events in September in Worcester, Hartford, and Vermont. In Boston, there have already been some Pride events, including Boston Black Pride in February and Boston Latinx Pride in April.

10. Pride is not the only important date for the LGBTQ community.Coming Out Day happens every Oct. 11, and October is History Month.

Patrick Garvin can be reached at pgarvin@globe.comand on Twitter @PatrickMGarvin.