June is practically like December for the members of the LGBTQ+ community. You see, this is the month when we celebrate Pride. We remember the colorful individuals who have given their lives the ensure that no one will get prosecuted again for being gay. In almost every major city around the globe, we come together and hold massive parades and concerts to celebrate, well, ourselves.
Every year, I join the New York parade with all my friends, whether they are members of the third sex or not. That’s the beauty of Pride—it welcomes everyone who wants to spread joy and love. You can wear whatever you want, dance however you want, and people will support you for it.
The month of June is still a month away at the time of writing this blog, but the entire world seems to be somewhat frozen. Only a few people can leave the house; even business owners cannot open their establishments unless they sell food and other essentials. Here’s what it means for the 2020 Pride celebration.
The Bad News
When the actual Gay Pride rolls in, the quarantine regulations may have eased significantly by then. Various governors are already thinking of doing that in the coming weeks to keep the economy from crashing. Pharmaceutical companies are also close to starting their clinical trials for the new vaccines that may save people from COVID-19.
The problem, however, is that mass gathering may not be allowed until the end of the year or early next year. It is still too risky to insist on doing so, especially since no one can see the coronavirus. A person can transmit it to others unintentionally, and then another wave of pandemic takes place. Thus, there will be no parades in 2020 to celebrate Pride.
The Good News
Despite the lack of events on the streets, the gay community will undoubtedly not let a year pass without commemorating Pride in some way. What the leaders of different LGBT organizations have agreed on is to do everything online.
On the 27th of June, they will be streaming musical numbers every hour. Some well-known members and supporters of the gay community will also be doing speeches in between performances. All the performers and guest speakers will be safe because they will perform in their own homes.
A unique thing about this occasion—aside from the fact that it occurs on the Stonewall anniversary—is that it will be a worldwide effort. The organizations in Oceania, North America, South America, Asia, Africa, and Europe are teaming up to make this 24-hour streaming possible. They even intend to feature performances from every participating country, which makes this celebration more united than ever.
Of course, no one feels happy about being unable to parade around the city. That’s what we have all been doing in the last 50 years. It is already part of the culture.
However, we happen to know very well that prohibiting mass gatherings is for the greater good. As much as we want to party on the streets, we surely don’t want to test positive for COVID-19 a few days later. Especially in the United States, there are hundreds of thousands of infected people, and it may increase exponentially if we don’t follow the government’s orders.
It is indeed saddening to realize that the major cities around the world will not be filled with colors in June this year. Everyone will most likely be at home, watching the festivities in various countries, wishing that you can go there.
Still, we should all be glad that there is at least a streaming party on Pride Day. That’s the best we can do right now, given the current circumstances. Once the pandemic is over, though, I have every reason to believe that the next celebration will be bigger and brighter than you can ever imagine.
Resources for LGBTQ Youth
The LGBTQ community is already a marginalized demographic. But the stress, stigma, and harassment are even worse for younger people within the community, than let’s say, the stigma of growing up without parents and in an institution such as here. In fact, in LGBTQ individuals from the ages of 10 and 24, suicide is one of the leading causes of death. LGBTQ youth are also twice as more likely to be physically assaulted in some way for their sexuality or gender identity. Fortunately, this vulnerable demographic has many resources to give individuals love, support, and opportunities to succeed. Here are some of the most helpful and well-known resources for LGBTQ youth: