Pride Month 2023: Celebrating Inclusion And Love

Pride Month
Image Credits: Freepik

The month of June is observed as the Pride Month each year, as it pays tribute to the participants of the 1969 Stonewall Riots, a series of protests advocating for gay liberation. This month celebrates and honours the LGBT community, which includes individuals who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender. Pride Month originated from the 1969 Stonewall riots, a series of protests for gay liberation that started on June 28. Over time, it has expanded beyond the United States and is now celebrated worldwide. In 1999 and 2000, President Bill Clinton became the first US President to officially acknowledge Pride Month. Then, in 2016, President Barack Obama designated the location of the historic 1969 Stonewall riots in New York City as a national monument, making it the first to recognize the contributions of gay Americans.

The History

In New York City on June 28, 1969, police raided the Stonewall Inn, a gay club in Greenwich Village. In response, bar patrons, staff, and residents of the neighborhood took to the streets of Christopher Street and engaged in rioting. Leading the movement significantly was Marsha P. Johnson, a black, trans, bisexual woman, who played a significant role in organizing protests and clashes that lasted for six days. The protesters all in all demanded safe spaces for LGBT+ individuals to openly express their sexual orientation without the fear of arrest.

Bisexual activist Brenda Howard, popularly known as ‘The Mother of Pride,’ is widely credited with initiating Pride Month. A year after the Stonewall Riots, Brenda organized Gay Pride Week and the Christopher Street Liberation Day Parade, which later evolved into the New York City Pride March. This event subsequently acted as a spark for the organization of marches and parades of a similar nature all over the world.

The Timeline

  • 1924: World War I veteran Henry Gerber founded the first gay rights organization in the United States.
  • 1969: Stonewall Riots took place, lasting for 6 days
  • 1970: The first Pride Parade, known as the “Gay Liberation March,” happened on the streets of New York City.
  • 1978: The original design of the rainbow gay pride flag, created by Gilbert Baker, was proudly flown at the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day Parade.
  • 1994: Lesbian-Gay-Bisexual-Transgender History Month is officially recognized in October.
  • 1999: Bill Clinton, as the President, officially recognized Gay & Lesbian Pride Month.
  • 1999: Kolkata hosted India’s first-ever Pride Parade.
  • 2016: By designating it as a national monument, President Barack Obama recognized the significance of the Stonewall Inn in the LGBTQ+ rights struggle.
  • 2018: The Supreme Court of India decriminalized consensual same-sex relationships by striking down Section 377.

What is the Theme of the Pride Month 2023?

Pride Month every year emphatically revolves around a specific theme to encourage people to engage in discussions and raise awareness about ongoing challenges faced by the LGBTQ+ community. The theme for Pride Month 2023 is “Rage and Resilience,” reflecting the current global climate with the resurgence of anti-LGBT bills and laws.

Image Credits: Freepik

In India, in 2014, transgender individuals were officially recognized as a “third gender,” and in 2017, the Supreme Court recognized sexual orientation as protected under the fundamental right to privacy. Following this, a revolutionary ruling struck down a colonial-era law and decriminalized homosexuality in 2018. In 2022, the top court ruled that unmarried or same-sex couples were entitled to welfare benefits. Furthermore, in 2023 and the Supreme Court is actively hearing petitions that seek to legally validate same-sex marriages.

Pride Month nonetheless invites everyone to embrace their true selves and make a bold statement. The vibrant rainbow, as an illustration, represents the diverse and lively nature of this month-long celebration. It features a wide range of activities such as rallies, parades, parties, workshops, concerts, and numerous other LGBTQ+ events. The Pride community takes immense pride in their movement and goes all out in their celebrations, showcasing elaborate costumes, makeup, and, of course, glitter, to shine brightly for the world to witness!


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