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  • Anibal Santiago

The Gay rights movement evolution in the U.S.


The evolution of the gay rights movement has proven to be successful and stronger than ever. Although the LGBTQ community still faces discrimination in different aspects of their lives, the progress made is apparent. In the slideshow above, I shared photos taken of activists participating in the pride month parades.

In order to read beyond the people in the slideshow, I must acknowledge other factors presented in the slideshow that speak to the evolution of the gay rights movement.

Photo 1: There are white men holding a sign that reads, "Christopher Street Gay Liberation Day 1970"; this street is in the East Village in Manhattan, New York where the gays marked their safe zone territory.

Photo 2: In 1976 more white men gather to march for gay pride month, this time with less clothing on.

Photo 3: In 1980 you start to see more organization and little more diversity. This translates to more participants, more money/assistance, and more acceptance.

Photo 4: In 1990 the men are dressed more provocatively. There are moving stages involved in the parade which translates to more funding for the movement. The provocative attire represents the courage to be bold, authentic, and freedom of expression. The community is growing confidence to express their true selves.

Photo 5: In 2000s you are seeing Drag Queens get involved in the parades in large numbers. Although the talent lived years before this picture, the fear to march alongside their community kept their alter egos inside their homes.

Photo 6: In 2012 another drag takes a bold photo expressing their courage to be loud in all forms from expressions to fashion.

Photo 7: The last photo is of a bar in the East Village that still exists to this day with no renovations to represent the history that it is apart of.


The evolution of the Gay Pride parades show how inclusiveness within the gay community itself evolved. Hispanics, Blacks, Asians, were not as involved as the white man because they had to experience another layer of discrimination. In the United States of America, being a white man is to be superior. White men in the LGBTQ community had to face their first layer of discrimination while other ethnic communities were faced with their race discrimination as well. But as time went on, women and men of color got involved in the movement to make it what it is today. The fashion evolution speaks to the level of confidence attained throughout the years. The mentions of funding is important because it involves the straight community and people in authoritative power approving such equipment and permits. In 2019, the pride parades across the country gather families and allies to celebrate the freedom to love, live and laugh safely as a LGBTQ member.

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