Pride Month almost upon us; Tualatin honors LGBTQIA+ community

Graphic by Sam Dunn.

Graphic by Sam Dunn.

Zelda Zamora-Villa, Staff Writer

Pride Month takes place during the month of June. It represents the celebration of the LGBTQIA+ community and honors its rich history. Pride Month also exists to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Riots in Manhattan, NY. Stonewall was a series of protests by the gay community in response to a police raid of a gay club. For a long time, the last Sunday of every month was considered a gay “national holiday,” until Bill Clinton declared every June in America to be “Gay and Lesbian Pride Month” in 1999. In 2011, Barack Obama expanded this to include the entire community.

Although students are only in school for about two weeks of Pride Month, Tualatin High School is doing its part to make the community feel supported through fun activities.  

“Tualatin is doing the Pride Stride, the first one they’ve ever done, in response to some crappy things that were said by a city councilwoman about Pride Month and Pride celebrations,” Jessica Fontaine, a GSA (Gender and Sexualities Alliance) advisor at TuHS, stated. 

Tualatin parents have gotten together with the GSA to plan the Pride Stride event, a mile-long walk that starts and ends at the Tualatin Commons. Anyone, LGBTQ+ or not, is welcome to participate. In addition to that, Tualatin High School is starting the tradition of lavender graduations on June 1, a ceremony for LGBTQ+ students who are graduating.

“There’s a lot of stuff in the works for next year to try and increase visibility, allyship and community for LGBTQ+ students here at Tualatin High School,” Fontaine said. “Pride Month is not only a celebration of the LGBTQ+ community and our identities, but also an acknowledgment of our history and culture, which I think a lot of people tend to forget about. There’s also a lot going on in the world right now with LGBTQ+ rights and discrimination, so educating and celebrating is extremely important right now.”

LGBTQ+ people say they have faced so much discrimination, especially in the last two years. Everyone deserves to feel seen and represented within our community, and as visibility for them grows, they hope to see more support overall.