First and foremost, we want to wish a Happy Pride Month to everyone in the LGBTQ community all over the world.
In celebration of this momentous month, we decided to take a look at how far the LGBTQ community has come over the years, and also how far they have to go in order to be considered equal to heterosexual people.
One of the first people that the LGBTQ community needs to wish a “Happy Pride Month” to is Ellen DeGeneres. She’s a gay icon, to be sure, but according to NPR, she was one of the major catalysts for the change in the way we, as a society, communicate to and about gay people.
In fact, the outlet goes so far as to say that Ellen DeGeneres was the major catalyst behind having gay marriage legalized.
“Perhaps the biggest cultural shock that resulted from this very famous and public coming out was that it did not ruin DeGeneres’ career. Ellen didn’t last too much longer, nor did her follow-up sitcom, The Ellen Show, but DeGeneres’ career took off and mainstream America followed. Now, she has her own daytime talk show, has hosted the Emmy Awards and the Oscars, has been a judge on American Idol, and is even a spokeswoman for companies like J.C. Penney and CoverGirl. ‘Who thought we would ever have a lesbian selling makeup?’ says Halem, saying she is still amazed by how widely accepted DeGeneres is by the American public.”
But even as we wish Happy Pride Month to the LGBTQ community, we have to realize how far society as a whole has to go before LGBTQ community is accepted as fully equal to all.
According to the Independent, Chechnya is still going through a so-called “gay purge,” wherein people who are gay and/or lesbian are taken to concentration camps, never to be seen again.
What’s more, according to the minister of Chechnya, the reports of abuse and of murder are not based in fact; rather, they’re based on a rumor spread in an attempt to demonize Russia and Russians.
“There is not a single concrete fact, there are no surnames. If there are facts, if there are surnames, then our answers will be concrete. But I repeat that we have no relation to the overwhelming majority of the allegations.”
But there is a little bit of good news for transgender people, making this a Happy Pride Month for them, in a way.
According to the Cut, the Pentagon plans to repeal the ban on transgender people serving in the military. The appeal could come as soon as Wednesday, according to Pentagon sources.
What’s more, according to U.S. Army Staff Sargent Shane Ortega, who is the first openly transgender staff sergeant of the Army, this repeal of the ban couldn’t come soon enough.
“U.S. Army Staff Sergeant Shane Ortega, who has become the de facto face of openly transgender military service members, told NBC, ‘The nation will see this example of equality, and the nation will reflect on itself.’ Ortega, who is retiring from the military on July 20, just a few weeks after the planned repeal, noted, ‘Nothing is impossible. I’ve been told millions of times this is never going to happen.'”
We again want to wish everyone a Happy Pride Day and hope that this is the beginning of many wonderful things to come.
Leave your thoughts about Happy Pride Day in the comments below.
[Featured Image by David Silverman/Getty Images]