June is Pride Month

June is Pride Month, when the world's LGBT communities come together and celebrate the freedom to be themselves. Pride gatherings are rooted in the arduous history of minority groups who have struggled for decades to overcome prejudice and be accepted for who they are.

The original organizers chose this month to pay homage to the Stonewall uprising in June 1969 in New York City, which helped spark the modern gay rights movement.

LGBT is an acronym meaning lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender. The term sometimes is extended to LGBTQ, or even LGBTQIA, to include queer, intersex and asexual groups. Queer is an umbrella term for non-straight people; intersex refers to those whose sex is not clearly defined because of genetic, hormonal or biological differences; and asexual describes those who don't experience sexual attraction.

Brenda Howard, a bisexual New York activist nicknamed the "Mother of Pride," is credited with organizing the first Pride parade to commemorate the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall uprising.

In 1978, artist and designer Gilbert Baker was commissioned by San Francisco city supervisor Harvey Milk -- one of the first openly gay elected officials in the US -- to make a flag for the city's upcoming Pride celebrations. Baker, a prominent gay rights activist, gave a nod to the stripes of the American flag but drew inspiration from the rainbow to reflect the many groups within the gay community.

The Seattle Pride Parade is the fourth largest in the country, attracting an estimated 500,000 members of the LGBTQIA+ community, friends and allies -  https://www.seattlepride.org/