Hey, gay gang! Happy Pride Month!
OK, perhaps it’s not the happiest Pride Month we’ve ever experienced. As most of you likely already know, the wise and prudent folks of Pride Houston made the decision to postpone Pride 2020 festivities until this coming fall as a means of protecting us from the Great Plague of 2020.
“As we all continue to do our part to slow the spread of the Covid-19, Pride Houston understands there is much concern and many questions regarding the 2020 Celebration and events. Please rest assured that we are closely monitoring the situation and complying with all city, county, state and federal guidelines. Our NUMBER ONE priority is the safety and health of all of our patrons. We will continually reassess as we wait for new data and instruction from our elected and health officials,” the PrideHouston.org statement reads.
We thank and salute Pride Houston officials for making that difficult — and no-doubt lifesaving — decision.
Hopefully by September or October, Covid-19 will be nothing more than a whimpering little sniffle that dried up with the hot Texas sun. Fingers crossed, mask on.
Holding Pride celebrations in the fall, especially a parade, is a concept that many Houstonians have touted and promoted for some time. Proponents say the milder weather will attract more revelers. Those opposed to a schedule change traditionally cite reverence to celebrating Pride in June as a commemoration of the anniversary of the legendary queer riots that occurred at New York City’s Stonewall Inn, which kicked off on June 28, 1969. Others don’t give a flip when Pride is held, as long as they can still get their drink and glitter on.
But just because we won’t be celebrating Pride this month as raucously as we normally do, there’s no reason not to remember what Pride is all about: specifically, the why’s, the when’s, and then whatever’s that make the month of June so significant to our LGBTQ community.
In May, leaders of Pride Houston announced that though they had previously stated the city’s annual LGBTQIA Pride Parade and Festival would be postponed until Fall 2020, due to the spread of COVID-19.
On June 11, Pride Houston announced it would be holding a march through downtown on June 27, 9 a.m. ’til 3 p.m. in support of the global outcry for justice following the murder of George Floyd by Minneapolis Police Force officers. The event is titled “It Started with a Riot! Pride Houston 2020 Equality March + Rally at Houston City Hall.” For more details, see “Pride Houston announces June 27 Pride March and Rally” at MontroseStar.com.
With that goal in mind…pop quiz!
1. The Stonewall Inn was
A) a gay bar in New York City.
B) run by the Mafia.
C) where Judy Garland got her start in show business.
D) A and B.
2. The Stonewall Inn became a gay bar
A) in 1969.
B) in 1966.
C) when patrons demanded the jukebox be stocked exclusively with show tunes.
3. The Stonewall Riots first started because
A) a butch lesbian, Storme DeLarverie was being brutalized by police.
B) bar customers, including transwomen Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, threw their high heels at police.
C) Judy Garland’s death earlier in the week had thrown gay men into a grieving frenzy.
D) all of the above.
4. The Stonewall Riots lasted:
A) one night.
B) six nights.
C) Until the bar ran out of Schlitz.
5. On June 24, 2016, the Stonewall Inn
A) was the site of a Lady Gaga concert.
B) was designated by President Barack Obama as the first U.S. National Monument dedicated to the LGBTQ-rights movement.
D) was remodeled and reopened in 2018 as a Chick-fil-A.
6. The United States’ first Pride Parade was held
A) in 1969, the weekend after the Stonewall Riots.
B) in 1970, a year after the Stonewall Riots.
C) in 1973 after Liza Minnelli won her Best Actress Oscar for Cabaret.
7. Houston’s first Pride Parade
A) was held June 16, 1977.
B) was really a march and rally protesting gay-hater and former Miss America, Anita Bryant, who was performing at the downtown Hyatt Regency for the Texas State Bar Association’s annual convention.
C) A and B.
8. Actors Rob Reiner and Ed Asner sent telegrams or support to organizers of the Houston march and rally.
9. Forty-nine people were murdered in a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida by a terrorist on June 16, 2016. The name of the club was
10. An official 2020 Pride Proclamation was issued by one of the United States’ top-tier U.S. elected leaders. It states in part: “This Pride Month, what began in the streets outside the Stonewall Inn over half a century ago must continue to motivate us to demand an end to bigotry, violence and discrimination in all its forms and to secure the blessings of equality and justice that are the right of all people.” This Proclamation was issued by
A) Speaker of The U.S. House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi.
B) U.S. President Donald J. Tr… Oh, let’s not be ridiculous. We all know the Orange Menace is way too busy destroying the country to release a Pride Proclamation.