In this blog, Student Life Content Creator, Kenaoel, discusses what they have learnt this LGBT+ History Month.
LGBT+ History Month is an important time to reflect on the contributions and experiences of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community. Throughout the month of February, events and activities are held to honour and celebrate the diversity of the LGBT+ community and to raise awareness about the ongoing struggles for equality and acceptance. Through researching the history of the LGBT+ community I’ve been able to use this month as an opportunity to learn more about the history and experiences of this diverse group of people.
One of the most important things I’ve learned during LGBT+ History Month is the rich history that is often overlooked or erased. From the Stonewall riots in 1969 to the ongoing fight for marriage equality, there have been many significant moments in LGBT+ history that have shaped the world we live in today. The Stonewall riots, for example, were a turning point in the fight for LGBT+ rights in the United States. The riots, which occurred in June 1969, were a series of spontaneous protests by members of the LGBTQ+ community against a police raid on the Stonewall Inn in New York City. These riots marked the beginning of the modern LGBT+ rights movement, and it is a critical moment that should be remembered and celebrated.
Another important thing I’ve learnt during LGBT+ History Month is the diversity of the LGBT+ community. It includes people of all races, ethnicities, religions, and socioeconomic backgrounds. This diversity is something to be celebrated and honoured, as it allows for a wide range of perspectives and experiences. It’s important to remember that the LGBT+ community is not a monolithic group, and the experiences and challenges faced by a gay person of colour may be vastly different from those faced by a white lesbian.
I have also learnt during LGBT+ History Month that the fight for equality and acceptance is ongoing. While there have been many important strides made in recent years, there is still much work to be done. Discrimination and prejudice still exist, and the LGBT+ community continues to face challenges in many areas of life, including employment, housing, and healthcare. For example, despite the legalization of same-sex marriage in the United States in 2015, many states still lack non-discrimination protections for LGBT+ individuals.
One of the most critical things I’ve learnt is that it is important to be an ally to the LGBT+ community. Being a heterosexual man makes it easy to take the rights and privileges that I have for granted. Being an ally means listening to the experiences of the LGBT+ community and using my privilege to help make the world a more inclusive and equitable place for everyone.
In conclusion, LGBT+ History Month is an important time for reflection and learning. It has allowed me to gain a deeper understanding of the contributions and experiences of the LGBT+ community. It has also reminded me that the fight for equality and acceptance is ongoing and that it’s crucial to be an ally to the LGBT+ community. Hopefully my reflections on this topic will inspire others to take the time to learn more about the LGBT+ community and to use their privilege to help make the world a more inclusive and equal place for everyone.