Gay pride month: LGBTQI+ Community Struggles and Accomplishments
Did you know that in June, LGBTQI+ communities around the world come together to celebrate their rights?
Every June 28th, or the Saturday closest to this date, the streets of many countries around the world are filled with music and color. But it’s not just another holiday… It is a celebration of the hard struggle for the rights of minority groups and the achievements in overcoming prejudice and acceptance.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, in the midst of industrialization, LGBTQI+ communities began to form in urban areas in the United States and different organizations, inspired by movements fighting for women’s rights, were formed.
Decisions such as the decriminalization of consensual same-sex and private sexual conduct in Illinois and the prohibition of sex discrimination nationwide. They became great achievements that would inspire to continue this struggle for rights.
However, the historic landmark event that would become the origin of the gay pride celebration would take place on June 28th, 1969. It is about the Stonewall riots, when a routine raid on the bar bearing that name, unleashed a series of demonstrations to demand respect for the rights and freedoms of homosexuals.
The tension generated by these riots lasted for several days and the authorities lost control of the situation, but after these events, the LGBTQI+ community was able to have places where they could talk freely without the need to hide and without the fear of being arrested.
For decades the struggle has continued and although many of their rights have been recognized, there is still a long way to go.
The LGBTQI+ pride march
A year after the Stonewall Riots, to commemorate those demonstrations, a New York bisexual activist named Brenda Howard, known as the “Mother of Pride”, organized the first LGBTQI+ Pride march. This became the genesis of the celebrations that take place every June around the world.
Every year, thousands of homosexuals and heterosexuals take to the streets to show their support for this stuggle for the restoration of rights and acceptance of a community that, throughout history, has suffered discrimination and cruel treatment.
Major achievements in the LGBTQI+ struggle
Over the years and in more than 25 countries around the world, the fight for LGBTQI+ rights has borne fruit. Political, social and legal changes have not been long in coming. Among the major achievements are:
- Homosexuality was removed from the list of mental disorders.
- At this time, many countries legalized same-sex marriage or civil union between same-sex couples.
- Linked to equal marriage and civil unions, some countries provide members of the LGBTQI+ community with legal guarantees and protections in marriages after death and divorce.
- Many nations allow, as a part of the gender or sex change process, the change in identity documents for the LGBTQI+ people.
- Although it has not been an easy road, some countries have already opened the door to adoption for the same sex-couple.
- Likewise, this community can now count on the existence of programs to protect them from discrimination and aggresion.
However, there are still countries in the world such as Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, among others, where the LGBTQI+ community still have limited freedoms and are exposed to physical punishment, torture and even death because of their “non-heterosexual” status. Hence the need for the marches to demand rights not to stop.
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