9 Key Facts You Need To Know About The History Of Gay Pride
June is the month to be extra prideful of Pride and wear or display rainbows as much as possible. If you're wondering though, where the tradition of Pride and celebrating the ever-evolving and inclusive LGBTQ community began, here are a few facts to keep in your pocket:
1/9The Emergence Of The Rainbow Flag
The rainbow flag as a gay pride symbol made its debut at the San Francisco Pride Parade in 1978. Harvey Milk asked his good friend Gilbert Baker to design a unifying symbol for the gay community, and the rainbow flag was the result.
Harvey Milk was an American politician who became the first openly gay person to be elected to public office in California. The critically-acclaimed 2008 film Milk, starring Sean Penn, was based on his life.
The original LGBT flag was hand dyed and consisted of eight symbolic colours. Here are their meanings:
Pink - sexuality
Red - life
Orange - healing
Yellow - sunlight
Green - nature
Turquoise - magic/art
Blue - serenity/harmony
Purple - spirit
(Pink and turquoise were later removed from the flag due to production constraints and the need for design symmetry.)
4/9Why Pride Celebrated Is In June
June was chosen to be the LGBT Pride Month to commemorate the Stonewall riots, which took place in New York in June 1969, when gay bars were illegal. The brave activism displayed in the incident is considered the start of the gay liberation movement.
5/9The Oldest LGBT Organization
The oldest still-existing LGBT organisation in the world is Netherland’s Center for Culture and Leisure (COC). Founded in 1946, it adopted a vague name to mask its taboo purpose.
6/9The World's Largest Pride Parade
With an estimated 3.5 million attendees in 2011, Sao Paulo, Brazil hosted the world’s largest Pride Parade.
Europe has a Pan-European International Pride Event, called, appropriately, Europride.
8/9The Only Floating Pride Parade
Amsterdam is the only city whose Pride celebration literally floats on a river. The parade involves 100 decorated boats that sail through the city on the Prinsengracht River.
9/9The longest Gay Pride Celebration
The longest pride celebration lasts three to four weeks in Sydney, Australia each February, ending with Mardi Gras.
See also: Drag Queens Get A Thailand Tatler Makeover