Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month is in June, but one voice has been noticeably absent from the observance: President Donald Trump. For those who enjoyed greater assurances their civil rights would be protected under the Obama administration, recent reports show that many in the LGBT community are frustrated and even angry with President Trump’s apparent dismissal of the progress that has been achieved.
June is also African-American Music Month. It was originally named Black Music Month under President Jimmy Carter, but President Obama had the name changed to a more politically palatable version. President Trump did issue a proclamation recognizing June as African-American Music Month, one for National Oceans Month, and another for National Homeownership Month. Still, there has been nothing issued for LGBT Pride Month. The White House has issued no public proclamation, no public address, no speech or statement. And the dismissal of LGBT Pride Month isn’t limited to President Trump. Vice President Mike Pence has also been silent on the issue. Those interested in the issue may stay up-to-date with President Trump’s proclamations at the official White House website and see if an official statement is released sometime during June.
Though President Trump hasn’t issued a proclamation, many federal and state organizations are moving forward with their LGBT Pride Month support. Typically, the White House issues a proclamation and then federal materials are released that other agencies can use to raise awareness for LGBT causes and events. The last federal materials issued for LGBT Pride Month were under the Obama administration. Despite the apparent dismissal from the White House of LGBT Pride Month, various political leaders are showing their support through social media networks using the hashtag #Pride2017 #LGBTPride and #LGBTPrideMonth. You may see some tweets by political leaders who support LGBT rights below. Check with your local government agencies to see who supports LGBT rights and who does not.
According to a report by People, Ivanka Trump drew ire after tweeting celebratory messages for LGBT Pride Month that many felt were hypocritical. Here is a tweet Trump shared on Twitter. Check out the tweet to read the responses.
Commentary from The Advocate quickly pointed out that Ivanka Trump supported her father’s campaign for the presidency and therefore set herself at odds with the LGBT community. Lucas Grindley wrote the following and specifically mentioned the White House’s dismissal of LGBT Pride Month.
“For months we’ve been regaled with breathless tales of Ivanka and Jared acting as the single best thing standing between us and Trump’s full-scale, Pence-inspired discrimination doctrine. Ivanka’s tweets about Pride Month will one day be referenced in yet another of these stories about her secret independence.”
“The story will note that Daddy Trump opted not to issue the traditional Pride Month proclamation for June and isn’t hosting the usual Pride reception at the White House. It will imply that congratulations are owed to Ivanka Trump for tweeting what was not said by the White House — where she works and supposedly wields incredible influence. ”
There is no question the LGBT community is outraged by Trump’s dismissal as well as Ivanka Trump’s use of LGBT Pride Month without first showing her solidarity with the movement. Great progress had been made under the Obama administration for lesbians, gays, transgender people, and bisexuals. Within Trump’s first 100 days, gay rights were pushed aside and trampled on, leaving many in the LGBT community reeling by the treatment.
Those who wish to support their local gay communities in June should not look to President Trump or the White House to lead the way but will need to rely upon local government officials who stand with the LGBT community and voice their outcry vocally. They may also organize in protest and march in their communities, attend LGBT events, and support causes that directly empower the LGBT community.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo supported gay rights publicly, but also reminded the public of how the gay rights movement started with the Stonewall Riots. According to Civil Rights.org, the Stonewall Riots began on June 28, 1969, when local patrons of the Stonewall Inn were fed up with the police harassment they received due to being gay. The site reported the following and it is a reminder not only of how the gay rights movement started, but a cautionary tale of what can happen in the future if government leaders turn their back on the LGBT community.
“In the early hours of June 28, 1969, a group of gay customers at a popular gay bar in Greenwich Village called the Stonewall Inn, who had grown angry at the harassment by police, took a stand and a riot broke out. As word spread throughout the city about the demonstration, the customers of the inn were soon joined by other gay men and women who started throwing objects at the policemen, shouting ‘gay power.’
“Police reinforcements arrived and beat the crowd away, but the next night, the crowd returned, even larger than the night before, with numbers reaching over 1000. For hours, protesters rioted outside the Stonewall Inn until the police sent a riot-control squad to disperse the crowd. For days following, demonstrations of varying intensity took place throughout the city.”
The United States has come too far with gay rights to stop moving forward and progress backward. If you want to participate in the fight for gay rights in 2017, check with your local groups and organizations as there are many marches planned this month. On June 11, 2017, the Equality March for Unity and Pride will take place in Washington, D.C. You can show your support and create awareness online by changing your profile picture to the Equality March for Unity and Pride’s picture frame as seen below. If you can’t make it to Washington, D.C. to march, you can find a local solidarity march in select areas. Check the website to find an equality march near you or to organize a march.
Are you going to support LGBT Pride Month in June? Will you march, attend an event, or donate to a cause? How do you feel about the fact President Trump hasn’t issued a proclamation in honor of LGBT Pride Month? Please leave your comments, thoughts, and opinions in the section below.
[Featured Image by Berezka_Klo/Shutterstock]