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The criminalized origins of Pride

Many people are generally familiar with the origins of Pride Month, celebrated in June each year. This includes the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in NYC, which police repeatedly raided. The patrons rose up in 1969 against being targeted and mistreated, resulting in what's known as the Stonewall riots.

While parades and celebrations of queerness take place across the country this month, anti-LGBTQ+ sentiment, discrimination, and legislation is still prevalent. It's important to learn and remember the history behind Pride and to resist efforts to criminalize LGBTQ+ people in 2023 and beyond.

The origins of Pride Month

The Stonewall riots occurred on the end of June in 1969. The first pride parade marked the anniversary of the event, which started with the police raiding the Stonewall Inn in New York City, arresting gay people. Riots broke out between the police and patrons that lasted six days.

Did you know?

  • "Homosexual acts" were illegal in 49 states in 1969 and in NYC dressing in drag was a crime

  • Gay bars were run by the Mafia, bribing police and blackmailing patrons

  • Local governments could shut down businesses for employing or serving gay people

  • The Christopher Street Liberation march was the first "pride parade" and swelled to be 15 city blocks long

Read a detailed history of the Stonewall riots here:

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