Wilson Community College proudly observes LGBTQ+ Pride Month during the month of June.
Check back throughout the month for more facts and information.
Terms and Facts You Should Know
- Coming Out | The process in which a person first acknowledges, accepts and appreciates their sexual orientation or gender identity and begins to share that with others.
- Gay | A person who is emotionally, romantically or sexually attracted to members of the same gender. Men, women and non-binary people may use this term to describe themselves.
- Gender binary | A system in which gender is constructed into two strict categories of male or female. Gender identity is expected to align with the sex assigned at birth and gender expressions and roles fit traditional expectations.
- Gender expression | External appearance of one’s gender identity, usually expressed through behavior, clothing, body characteristics or voice, and which may or may not conform to socially defined behaviors and characteristics typically associated with being either masculine or feminine.
- LGBTQ+ | An acronym for “lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer” with a “+” sign to recognize the limitless sexual orientations and gender identities used by members of our community.
- Non-binary | An adjective describing a person who does not identify exclusively as a man or a woman. Non-binary people may identify as being both a man and a woman, somewhere in between, or as falling completely outside these categories. While many also identify as transgender, not all non-binary people do. Non-binary can also be used as an umbrella term encompassing identities such as agender, bigender, genderqueer or gender-fluid.
- Transgender | An umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or expression is different from cultural expectations based on the sex they were assigned at birth. Being transgender does not imply any specific sexual orientation. Therefore, transgender people may identify as straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, etc.
Terms are from Human Rights Campaign Glossary of Terms.
- In 1978, Harvey Milk asked his friend Gilbert Baker to make a symbol that would represent gay pride. Using the US flag as inspiration, Baker hand-sewed a rainbow flag. The rainbow pride flag was first flown in San Francisco on June 25, 1978, for Gay Pride Day. Find more information at https://www.cnn.com/style/article/pride-rainbow-flag-design-history/index.html.
- RuPaul got his start in the ’90s in the music industry, releasing his hit single “Supermodel (You Better Work).” At the same time, he appeared in a number of films as his drag persona, including “Crooklyn,” “The Brady Bunch Movie,” and “Blue in the Face.”. In 2009, he started a drag queen competition show titled “RuPaul’s Drag Race,” and it quickly became a hit among the LGBTQ+ community. Read more at https://www.biography.com/personality/rupaul.
- Billie Jean King is one of the most famous names in professional tennis. She earned 39 Grand Slam titles from 1966 to 1975. She also beat Bobby Riggs in the famous “Battle of the Sexes” match. Read more at https://www.tennisfame.com/hall-of-famers/inductees/billie-jean-king.
- Laverne Cox jumped into the spotlight in 2013 when she started playing transgender inmate Sophia Burset on Netflix’s “Orange Is the New Black.” For her role in the series, Cox was nominated for three Emmy Awards. In fact, in 2014, she was the first openly transgender person to be nominated for a Primetime Emmy in an acting category. Read more at https://www.britannica.com/biography/Laverne-Cox.
- Although most people associate the March on Washington with Martin Luther King, Jr., Bayard Rustin is the person who actually organized the massive event. In fact, Rustin is the one who taught Dr. King about Gandhi’s belief in non-violence and civil disobedience. Read more at https://www.biography.com/activist/bayard-rustin.
- Alan Turing was a mathematician who is often credited with creating the foundation of artificial intelligence and computer science. He also played a major role in World War II, helping break several German codes. read more at https://www.biography.com/scientist/alan-turing.
- Although Marsha P. Johnson never officially identified as transgender, she is considered a transgender pioneer. Johnson played a major role in the historic Stonewall riots in 1969 that jump-started the gay liberation movement. After the riots, Johnson became a leader in the community and used the power to open Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries, which helped transgender youth. Read more at https://www.cnn.com/2019/06/26/us/marsha-p-johnson-biography/index.html.