This year marks the 50th anniversary of the uprising, and New York City is celebrating in style. The city is hosting WorldPride all month long, featuring more than 50 events from rallies and parties to lectures.
The celebration will culminate with the NYC Pride March down 5th Avenue on June 30.
Though there is much to celebrate when it comes to the progress of the LGBTQ movement, there is also a lot of left work to do to achieve true equality.
The problems start at the top with the man in the White House. Trump announced his ban on transgender people serving in the military in 2017. This year, his administration moved to roll back regulations that would protect transgender medical patients.
In New York, the Democratically controlled State Senate finally passed the Gender Expression Non-Discrimination Act (GENDA), banned conversion therapy, and will soon eliminate the “gay panic” defense.
Despite these policy wins, hate crimes are still occurring against LGBTQ communities, especially transgender people. According to advocates, at least six trans women of color have been killed this year alone.
At the start of Pride Month this year, an arsonist set ablaze rainbow flags at a gay-owned bar in Harlem.
These acts are meant to send a message of fear and hostility.
New Yorkers, including those who are not LGBTQ, need to reject those notions. Instead, through organizing, parades and even small actions, we need to send a message of acceptance and respect.
Like any long social movement, equality won’t be achieved overnight. But we all have a role to play to ensure LGBTQ communities are protected and celebrated to the fullest extent.