Happy Pride, friends. It’s the month of the year that is set aside for this community, with a special culmination of festivals and parades and events that makes it different from the rest of the year. There is an air of “official” about it. It belongs to people who belong to each other because of being gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, queer, questioning, intersex, two-spirit, and all of the allies of these people, as well as all the gradients found within those colors of the rainbow. It’s a group that has membership based on opting-in.
Because what makes this community a distinct group isn’t the baseline norm for this world, at some point in everyone’s life, each person has had to say, “Yes.” It’s a positive, not a negative. And that is a remarkably strong trait of a group; it takes claiming and owning it rather than simply inheriting it like being from a certain ethnicity or having a particular skin color or even growing up in a religion where you just wake up and walk the path that was already determined for you. Members of this group have to consciously say, “I am this. I belong here.” And during the month of Pride, we also say, “I will celebrate us.” Being who you are isn’t a choice, but coming out and being a member of this group is. And it’s a path that is diverse; one that’s still being determined and fought for, as laws and hearts and minds expand to include this group, which is reason for more unity and, usually, more celebration.
Lavender’s Pride Issue is a celebration of this community as well as a snapshot of how this community lives its pride in everyday life. We’ve got a section about the upcoming Pride festival and what will be happening later in June as part of Twin Cities Pride, and we also have the largest issue of our year, full of what people in this community are doing, what we care about, what is on our radar as a group with special interests. It’s a publication in which you can see yourself, someone you know, as well as someone who’s doing something you’re interested in. We profile members of the community who are in television, music, food, sports, fashion, the performing arts, and nonprofits as well as topics that involve this community like no other: having babies, being healthy, going into recovery, getting married, and going to school with support and respect. It’s how this community lives. With pride. Not just in the month of June, but all year ‘round.
This Pride season, I wish you exactly what I wish you the rest of the year: a life of authenticity, safety, celebration, health, recognition, and belonging. You are seen, you belong, you are valued.
With you and with thanks,