Activist Barbara Gittings, 1965
Pride Month is celebrated every June and promotes the equality and affirmation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people (LGBTQ). The celebration commemorates the Stonewall riots of 1969, which were in response to a police raid of Stonewall Inn and other gay and lesbian bars. The riots and protests that followed marked a critical turning point for LGBTQ+ civil rights.
The first Pride March was organized for the following year, 1970, and spread over 51 New York City blocks towards Central Park. Brenda Howard, known as "The Mother of Pride" was influential in organizing the march and for implementing her idea of a week-long series of events and celebrations surrounding Pride Day.
President Bill Clinton was the first U.S. president to officially declare June "Gay and Lesbian Pride Month" in 1999 and 2000. President Barack Obama officially recognized the June as LGBT Pride Month each year he was in office (2009-2016); and President Donald Trump became the first Republican president to recognize Pride Month, through Twitter rather than official proclamation.
Today, annual Pride celebrations are observed throughout the world, promoting equal rights, dignity, and self-affirmation of the LGBTQ+ community.
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