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Have you heard about the Stonewall riots? On June 28, 1969, New York city’s LGBT+ community said enough – enough to the police raids, to being arrested for “crimes against nature,” solicitation, and lewd behavior. They said enough to feeling shameful and enough to the social stigma of being part of the LGBT+ community. Out of the Stonewall riots, Pride was born. Marsha P. Johnson and others led a series of uprisings in protest of the brutality they faced. The news of the Stonewall riots spread around the US and the World. The following year, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, and other cities organized gay Pride celebrations.
The Stonewall riots were not the first protest for LGBT+ rights. In the past LGBT+ activists hosted “walks and vigils in silence with a required dress code: men in jackets and ties and women in dresses.” The Stonewall riots helped change the conversation from assimilation. There was no dress code, no age limit, participants could come as they were and show Pride. The Stonewall riots grew into thousands of Pride events around the world. The events from June 28, 1969, led to gay rights movements in Canada, Britain, France, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, and many other countries.
Chicago’s Pride celebration started with a week-long celebration that included a Gay Dance, workshops, and speeches. It has since expanded to a month-long celebration. The LGBT+ community has had a long history of fighting for their rights. As we are celebrating, we are still fighting. There is continued discrimination against the LGBT+ community, especially the trans community. The American Medical Association has called the violence against trans people an epidemic, and the Black trans community is affected by this violence in greater numbers.
I am an ally that is fighting for the rights of LGBT+ individuals to be bold, be proud, be them. We have included a list of resources to show you the everyday life of the LGBT+ community. We also listed events you can attend virtually to celebrate Pride. You can find more events here and here. Parade or no parade, Pride goes on.
Saturday, June 27, 2020
Chicago drag performers Irregular Girl, Kelly Boner, Lucy Stoole, and Pastiche get together for a conversation about the drag as an art form and its relationship to art history. Taking place on Zoom and Facebook Live, the virtual chat (part of the Museum of Contemporary Art's Pride festivities) will consider how drag can exist in art museums and how performers are adapting to virtual performances as live venues remain closed. Stick around after the conversations conclude to see each participant present a drag performance.
Thursday, June 25, 2020
Joffrey Ballet hosts a special Pride edition of its On Cue interview series, speaking with company artist Fernando Duarte—best known for portraying Mother Nutcracker in the company's annual production of The Nutcracker. Viewers will learn about Duarte's experiences as a drag performer and how he's staying busy while in quarantine.
Friday, June 26, 2020 - Sunday, June 28, 2020
Reunion Chicago, Slo ‘Mo, and OTV team up to present a three-day virtual celebration of Pride, showcasing LGBTQ+ creatives from throughout the city. Hosted by Reunion’s Kristen Kaza and Elijah McKinnon, each evening of the online festival will feature DJ sets, theatrical performances, drag, dance, interactive games, and PSAs from community partners.
- A Secret Love (Netflix)
- Circus of Books (Netflix)
- Queer Eye (Netflix)
- Schitt’s Creek (Netflix)
- We’re Here (Hulu)
- Milk (Hulu)
- Defining Moments with Ozy (Hulu)
- Moonlight (Prime)
- Happy Birthday Marsha! (Prime)
- Black on Both Sides: A Racial History of Trans Identity by C. Riley Snorton
- Call Me By Your Name by Andre Aciman
- Timekeeper by Tara Sim
- Georgia Peaches and Other Forbidden Fruit by Jaye Robin Brown
- The House of Impossible Beauties by Joseph Cassara
- Paul Takes the Form of a Mortal Girl by Andrea Lawlor
Karl Constant, M.S.
Assistant Director, Inclusion, Diversity,& Equity