Pride 2021: Back to the Streets
Pride 2021: Back to the Streets!
After 2019’s worldwide celebration of Pride’s 50th Anniversary, it felt like an invisible milestone had been reached. Since the Stonewall Inn riots 50 years before in 1969, the LGBTQ+ community and its allies had fought to end homosexuality being labeled a mental illness, for equal medical treatment through the HIV/AIDS crisis, the ability to serve their country in the military openly, for equal marriage rights, and countless more victories.
2019 was a commemoration of all of that. There was immense optimism about what was next. Then, as we all know, a pandemic hit.
Across the country, Pride celebrations were canceled or moved virtual. A day many LGBTQ+ members have their first taste of community was suddenly gone. Unfortunately, 2020 Pride cancellations were only the beginning of the difficulty.
Gay-owned businesses closed in droves during the pandemic. Want to hear a staggering fact? Only 21 lesbian-owned bars remain in America today. LGBTQ+ institutions that were once known for being “safe spaces,” a place you could meet other queer people without being an outsider or ostracized, were suddenly halved.
But now we have vaccines. Now COVID-19 cases are on the downturn.
As has been the case throughout the gay rights movement, there have been peaks and valleys. It’s time the climb out of this valley and re-engage our sense of community. You can wear a mask and wave a flag in the parade. You can socially distance and sing along to a drag show. You can hand sanitize after each booth you visit at a Pride festival.
But participate in some way! Whether at home or on the streets.
Not sure where to start? Here’s a comprehensive list on places and things you can do during Pride month to show your spirit no matter how you like to celebrate. Or you can simply search for pride activities happening in your local and regional area.
Let’s do what we couldn’t last year. Reignite our sense of togetherness and give our LGBTQ+ friends, family and community members two years’ worth of Pride!
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