June is Pride Month for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer people. The celebration includes incredible cultural and political events and celebrations around the world, such as parades, film festivals, performance art, poetry readings and more.
It was wonderful to watch today's parade in San Francisco, which included representation from LGBT activists, politicians, clergy, and straight allies from almost every racial, ethnic, religious and age group imaginable.
LGBT Pride Month is an amazing time of intentional visibility and delight, as well as a stinging reminder of the daily impact of living as a minority in a society that, despite recent political gains, still demeans and devalues people in subtle and overt ways, even when we might not be conscious of it.
Celebrations like LGBT Pride, Black History Month and other annual celebrations that affirm identity, celebrate diversity and raise awareness on a broader level, are not just enjoyable events; they also provide a kind of cultural healing that restores our self worth and connection to one another.
And when the sun rises we are afraid
it might not remain
when the sun sets we are afraid
it might not rise in the morning
when our stomachs are full we are afraid
when our stomachs are empty we are afraid
we may never eat again
when we are loved we are afraid
love will vanish
when we are alone we are afraid
love will never return
and when we speak we are afraid
our words will not be heard
but when we are silent
we are still afraid.
So it is better to speak
we were never meant to survive.
–Audre Lorde, from "A Litany for Survival"
What parts of yourself have you kept hidden for fear of judgment or discrimination? How can you celebrate ALL of who you are today?