Pride Parade is an event celebrated by the members of our community including lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, non-binary, and queer (L.G.T.Q). The pride parades are also known as pride marches, pride events, and pride festivals. At Rainbow Fellowship we believe that pride parade is an exercise of the right guaranteed by human rights instruments and democratic values. As a rainbow fellow, we take great pride in our pride parades. These are the events that provide an opportunity for the members of our community to express themselves. These are the events in which members of our community celebrate achievements such as the legal recognition of our legal rights including the right to enter into a valid marriage, gender-neutral practices, etc. Similarly, the pride parades provide an opportunity for members of our community to come together on one platform, socialize with each other, and create long-lasting relationships. The pride parades have played a significant role in consolidating our bond with members of our community.
The history of the pride parade goes back to 28 June 1970. On this day the first-ever pride March was organized in New York City. The first pride march is officially known as the Christopher Street Liberation March Day, which was organized by a group of activists that included Craig Rodwell, Fred Sargeant, Ellen Broidy, Linda Rhodes, and Brenda Howard, to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall riots in the New York City. In the first march, the members of our community gathered to condemn the clashes that took place during the Stonewall riots. The first pride march was a kind of demonstration against the violence committed against the members of our community in the Stonewall. However, over a period of time, the nature and magnitude of the pride parade have evolved. The pride parades are not confined to the United States of America, but they are celebrated globally. In countries that have recognized the rights of members of our community, the pride marches are events of celebration. These events include music, barbeque, dance, and other celebrations. However, in countries that have not fully recognized the rights of our community, the pride marches provide an opportunity to demonstrate against the discriminatory laws and practices.
At Rainbow Fellowship we believe that the pride parade may play a significant role in creating awareness among other segments of society about the rights of our community. In the pride parade, the members of our community invite their friends and other members of society to be part of their celebrations. In the pride parades, the members of our community give the message of love, mutual-acceptance, and peaceful-co-existence. Therefore, pride parades play a very essential role in promoting acceptance and respect for members of our community. When other segments of society join the celebrations and feel the love and support of our community, it not only create awareness but also contribute to a change in the social acceptance of our community. Therefore, in the countries in which pride parades are celebrated, there is social acceptance of our community as compared to the countries which have imposed restrictions on the conduct of these marches and parades.
The right to gather together and form an association has been recognized by international and national legislative instruments of numerous countries. Similarly, the right to gather for a demonstration is considered a significant feature of modern democracies. However, there are numerous countries in which the members of our community are deprived of this fundamental right. The countries such as Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kenya, Afghanistan, Yemen, and numerous countries have banned pride parades. These countries have also declared consensual same-sex relations illegal. The members of our community residing in these countries are struggling for the recognition of their rights. In these countries, the members of our community have been planning to arrange demonstrations to make their voices heard and create awareness about the rights of our community but they are subject to torture, physical assault and in some cases, some members of the community are also killed for demanding their basic and fundamental rights.
At Rainbow fellowship, we think that social prejudice and peer pressure is a very important challenge for members of our community. Due to the fear of isolation, rejection, and discrimination from friends, relatives, family members, and society at large, the members of our community are scared to reveal their sexual orientation. Due to the pressure of social acceptance, members of our community hide their identities, which may have very negative consequences for physical and mental health. At RFGN, the mental, physical and spiritual health of members of our community is our top priority. We believe that the pride parades provide an opportunity to members of our community to demonstrate against the discriminatory practices prevalent in society against the members of our community and to create awareness about our rights. It also provides an opportunity for other segments of society to become part of our celebration and interact with the members of our community. This interaction and integration may promote social acceptance and address the challenge of peer pressure.
At Rainbow Fellowship, we believe that pride parades are a source to spread love, support, happiness, positivity, and peace. We suggest that the countries which have imposed restrictions and a ban on the organizing of pride parade shall waive the restrictions and ease the ban. We recommend the members of civil societies, human rights organizations to play their role to legalize pride parade in all member states of the United Nations. Similarly, we suggest that the countries which have legalized pride parades shall facilitate the organizers of pride parades in organizing pride parades. We also invite other members of the community to join our celebrations and be part of our pride parade. At RFGN we suggest that the members of the community shall invite their friends, colleagues, and acquaintance to become part of our celebration and join hands with us. Together we can create a world in which there is no discrimination and a world in which we all may live with peace and love.