On Tuesday, President Joe Biden issued a proclamation in recognition of Pride Month, which is held in June to bring awareness to the LGBTQ+ community.
Biden began by highlighting how the push for LGBTQ+ rights has grown since the 1969 Stonewall riots, where members of the gay community fought back against cops who raided The Stonewall Inn, a gay club in Greenwich Village, New York City. The incident has since motivated people to fight for LGBTQ+ rights in the United States.
In Tuesday’s proclamation, which Biden declared as “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Pride Month”, called on Americans to “recognize the valuable contributions of LGBTQ+ individuals across America” and “reaffirm our commitment to standing in solidarity with LGBTQ+ Americans in their ongoing struggle against discrimination and injustice.”
Biden noted that the LGBTQ+ community has “achieved remarkable progress” since the Stonewall riots, including securing “workplace protections for LGBTQ+ individuals in every State and Territory” and the Supreme Court legalizing same-sex marriage.
“Members of the LGBTQ+ community now serve in nearly every level of public office — in city halls and State capitals, Governors’ mansions and the halls of the Congress, and throughout my Administration,” Biden explained, adding that “nearly 14 percent of my 1,500 agency appointees identify as LGBTQ+”.
More specifically, Biden said he was “particularly honored” by the service of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg as “the first openly LGBTQ+ person to serve in the cabinet” and Assistant Health Secretary Dr. Rachel Levine as “the first openly transgender person to be confirmed by the Senate.”
Despite the progress, Biden lamented that “for all of our progress, there are still many states in which LGBTQ+ individuals lack protections for fundamental rights and dignity in hospitals, schools, public accommodations, and other spaces.”
Biden argued that several states “have chosen to actively target transgender youth through discriminatory bills that defy our Nation’s values of inclusivity and freedom for all.”
At the start of the month, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis signed such a bill, joining Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Mississippi, Montana, Tennessee and West Virginia, who have all passed similar laws.
Biden underscored several executive orders signed at the start of his administration, such as permitting transgender people to serve openly in the U.S military and another executive order “charging Federal agencies to fully enforce all Federal laws that prohibit discrimination on the basis of gender identity or sexual orientation.”
Biden contended that he “will not rest until full equality for LGBTQ+ Americans is finally achieved and codified into law,” calling on Congress to pass the Equality Act, which he says “will ensure civil rights protections for LGBTQ+ people and families across our country.”
“During LGBTQ+ Pride Month, we recognize the resilience and determination of the many individuals who are fighting to live freely and authentically,” the president continued. “In doing so, they are opening hearts and minds, and laying the foundation for a more just and equitable America.
“This Pride Month, we affirm our obligation to uphold the dignity of all people and dedicate ourselves to protecting the most vulnerable among us,” he concluded.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Win McNamee/Staff
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. He is also the co-hosts of the For Your Soul podcast, which seeks to equip the church with biblical truth and sound doctrine. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.