Since the Stonewall riots, the LGBT community uses the anniversary to stand up and show their pride.
The five rainbow colors of the LGBT flag flood the U.S. more during pride months than most any other time of the year. Parties roar, food abounds, and excitement fills the air, as crowds gather to remember those lost and celebrate community.
Kicking off this year; the Matinee Las Vegas Festival, May 26-29, 2017. The event, which originated in New York City in 2010, in one of the largest LGBT dance parties of the season. Matinee hosts eight parties in Vegas, with 20 renowned DJs keeping the party rolling.
Everfest’s website provides a comprehensive list of various LGBT Pride celebrations. Individual events begin the last weekend in May and run through September, in the United States, Australia, and Denmark. For those who plan ahead, some 2018 festivals are available to peruse.
Beyond LGBT Pageantry Will be Protest
With the controversial 2015-16 election cycle, the Orlando massacre, and the establishment attack on Transgender youth, there were protests. Now that Donald Trump is the commander-in-chief, the Congress is overwhelmingly Republican, and almost half of the country are red states, this year, LGBT Pride Events are likely to see protests.
The LGBT community has reason to be angry and betrayed. As of May 16, 2017, 11 Transgender folks were murdered. The Human Rights Campaign compares this to 22 deaths in 2016, which is a record number of fatalities.
Finding the actual numbers of deaths or violence for any group within the LGBT community remains difficult, as not everyone is out. A Gallup Poll released in January 2017, indicates approximately four percent of those who answered questions identified as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender. This is quite different from the oft-cited 1 in 10.
More Millenials are joining the ranks of those out and loud in the LGBT community. They are not a quiet group. Their rhetoric and confusing gender identities make it difficult for elder gays. On the other hand, their vocalizations are necessary, for them, the older generations, and those LGBT, who are yet to be born.
Protests are not only likely but should be part of every city’s Pride Week events. The LGBT community stands to lose a great deal of federal support. While statistics are not available for those living in poverty, without medical care, dependent on the ACA, or receiving social services, with President Trump’s grandiose budget proposal will affect millions of Americans.
One part of the LGBT community, more than half, are women with children. It may not be so common in the younger generation, but many women left traditional marriages with their young ones in tow. They are often living below the poverty level and depend on the very services the president wants to reduce drastically.
Los Angeles LGBT Pride Parade Evolves Into a We Resist Protest
On June 11, the traditional Pride Parade, in Los Angeles, will take the form of a protest. We Resist is an international group fighting against political tyrannies.
In the U.S., the focus is on Trump, his cronies, the war against the LGBT community, and the deportation threats of many queer brothers and sisters whose immigrant status is under the magnifying glass. The protest will raise awareness that the rights gained under the Obama administration could be reversed.
Patrick McDonald, the organizer, explains that this year the LGBT community in Los Angeles will make a strong political statement. In a sense, the parade had lost its point. This year there will be no floats, it will be a march, just like the first LGBT Pride was in 1970.
By Cathy Milne
EverFest: Pride Festivals 2017 – 2018 Calendar
Human Rights Campaign: Violence Against the Transgender Community in 2017
Time Magazine: HOW MANY AMERICANS ARE GAY?
Daily Beast: Just How Many LGBT Americans Are There?
L.A. Weekly: L.A. Pride Parade Becomes a Protest March
Featured Image Courtesy of eltpics’ Flickr Page – Creative Commons License
Top, First, Second and Third Inset Images Courtesy of Cathy Milne – Used With Permission
Fourth Inset Image Courtesy of Denise Coronel’s Flickr Page – Creative Commons License