Love Is Love
Written by Lauren 02/02/2022
Welcome to February! The month for valentines day, celebrating love and unashamed public displays of affection. However, February is also so important for the LGBTQIA+ community. It's history month; a time to remember those who fought and died for the ability to walk down the street holding the hand of those they love without discrimination.
It's so simple:
The plus symbol is to include those who identify as Pansexual, Non-Binary or Demisexual to name but a few.
THE FLAG & ITS HISTORY
The colours of the pride flag, their meaning and their positioning all have a meaning and are crucial to the history of the LGBTQIA+ community.
THE ORIGINAL PRIDE FLAG
GILBERT BAKER - 1978
The pride flag has seen many variations throughout the decades, starting in San Fransisco, in 1978 with Gilbert Baker. He designed this flag for the pride event in San Fran, representing the diversity of the community.
HOT PINK SEX
After the assassination of gay San Francisco City Supervisor Harvey Milk on November 27, 1978, demand for the rainbow flag greatly increased. In response, the Paramount Flag Company began selling a version using stock rainbow fabric with seven stripes: red, orange, yellow, green, turquoise, blue, and violet. As Baker ramped up production of his version of the flag, he too dropped the hot pink stripe because the fabric in that colour was not readily available.
In 1979, for a pride event, Baker wanted to split the flag in half to decorate the streets evenly. To achieve this, the pride flag went under another change and removed the turquoise and indigo colours and replaced them with ROYAL BLUE.
This pride flag became a universal symbol of pride and became recognisable everywhere. It is used as a mark of inclusivity and a safe community to be yourself, no matter how you identify.
"The rainbow flag as an internationally recognized symbol as important as the recycling symbol"
- Museum of Modern Art, 2015.
THE PROGRESS PRIDE FLAG
DANIEL QUASAR - 2018
“I felt there needed to be more thought put into the design and emphasis of the flag to give it more meaning” - Quasar, 2018.
Non-binary graphic design artist Daniel Quasar decided that the flag needed a makeover to include trans people, queer people of colour and "as well as those living with AIDS, those no longer living, and the stigma surrounding them".
The colours and their meanings:
LIGHT BLUE FLAG
BROWN PEOPLE OF COLOUR
THE STONEWALL RIOTS, NEW YORK CITY, 1969
Let's talk about the Stonewall Riots, a groundbreaking moment in LGBTQIA+ history, all the way back in 1969. Raids on gay bars in New York City were commonplace, however in the early morning hours of June 28, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn, patrons of the bar started to fight back once the police became violent.
A year after the uprising, to mark the anniversary on June 28, 1970, the first gay pride marches took place in Chicago, Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco. Within a few years, gay rights organisations were founded across the US and the world. Pride events are held annually in June in honour of the Stonewall riots.
The people who protested in those riots have mostly been forgotten to time, however, one shining queen is finally getting her overdue credit. Marsha P. Johnson, a trans woman became a beacon of hope to young and homeless members of the LGBTQIA+ in New York.
Along with her close friend Sylvia Rivera, Johnson founded S.T.A.R. - standing for Street Transvestite (now Transgender) Action Revolutionaries- a radical activist group in 1970. Later on, in 1970, S.T.A.R. House was also founded as a shelter for homeless gay and trans youth.
Johnson was a self-appointed drag queen with a troupe called Hot Peaches and Johnson also was an activist for AIDs with grass-roots political group ACT UP up until her death.
The charity Stonewall is the biggest LGBTQIA+ charity in Europe and has been active since 1989. Named after the 1969 Stonewall riots in New York City, Stonewall was formed by political activists and others campaigning against Section 28 of the Local Government Act. Stonewall diversified into policy development after Labour came to power in 1997, a period which saw successful campaigns to repeal Section 28, end the ban on LGBT people in the armed forces, equalise the age of consent, extend adoption and IVF rights to same-sex couples, and introduce civil partnerships.
Over the years, pride has become more accepted around the world and here at Bee Clean Soaps, we have a diverse team across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum and we pride ourselves on being a safe space for everyone. This is why celebrating and remembering these important dates and people, even if you're not a part of the LGBTQIA+ community because you never know who may be waiting to come out.