The Importance of Celebrating Pride
LGBT Pride Month takes place every year in June to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which occurred at the end of June 1969. As a result, many events are held during June. This is to recognize the importance of celebrating pride and to honour the impact that the LGBTQ+ people have had around the world.
Over the years, celebrating Pride has grown, not just in numbers within the LGBTQ+ community, but in popularity. While this upward trend is a positive movement towards acceptance and inclusion, we must do more than simply jump on the bandwagon for a few weeks. Supporting the LGBTQ+ community must continue all year long.
Why Pride Matters:
Everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation, should feel comfortable and safe being themselves.
LGBTQ+ parents often face a lot of anxiety when they take their children out in public. Occasions such as school events, going out for dinner or attending social gatherings can be uncomfortable. When they are interacting with new people, there’s never a certainty they will be accepted.
Normalizing families who break the heteronormative mold will create a more comfortable environment. Most importantly, it will make their children feel safe and protected too. Allowing them the freedom to be themselves, wherever they work, live and socialize breeds familiarity and acceptance.
Pride Month is a time when we all have the opportunity to become more aware of our own behaviours and subconscious prejudices. It gives us all a chance to examine ourselves and do some honest self-reflection. Learning how we can love and accept each other as human beings is the key to living in harmony with one another.
As allies, participating in Pride parades and celebrations is just the start. By supporting LGBTQ+ run businesses and events throughout the year, we are able to show our vocal support for them just by showing up. Recognizing members of the LGBTQ+ community as a part of the world we all live in incites positive progress for all of us.
What We Can Do Every Day:
Bringing Awareness to a Minority Community.
The added visibility of Pride Month can create a difficult side effect too. It can empower those who are against the LGBTQ+ community to resort to threats, violence, and bullying. Using your voice in support minimizes the impact of those who speak out against them.
The easiest way to take a stand in your daily life throughout the year, is to stop the fear-driven conversations. Making gay jokes, impersonations, being suggestive with innuendo, can easily be shut down by just one person expressing their discomfort. It can be awkward to do, but it can have a significant positive impact.
So while Pride Month 2022 comes to a close, supporting and celebrating the importance of pride within the LGBTQ+ community can continue all year round. By simply showing them the respect and love they deserve, we can collectively make a difference. After all, who we choose to love really isn’t what matters. What’s important is that we choose to love.