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A message of hope from San Diego Pride on the anniversary of the Stonewall riots

Our community is bigger and stronger than we were when this all started.
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Dear Pride Family,

I know that times seem bleak. Every day brings about more and more attacks on civil liberties all across this country. It’s too much to even keep track of at times, and it’s leaving many feeling exhausted and hopeless, but know that our community can survive this. We’ve been through these fights before. We’ve seen this before.

Today is the 49th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, that moment in our history when our community was done being pushed around. That riot, the origin of Pride, was literally a fight against the legal discrimination and brutal violence our community was subjected to. That fight is not over. 

Each of us is on the continuum of this movement in our own way. Whether your fight is within the company you work for, the school you attend, the space where you worship, the courtrooms of our judicial branch or public opinion, or even at your family dinner table; we are in this fight together.

When the first Pride in San Diego had us hiding our heads with paper bags to protect our careers and our very lives—those few dozen, defiant, and brave—took to the streets at a time when LGBTQ folks could be fired and gay men could be legally lobotomized. 1974 was not that long ago, yet Pride in San Diego is now over a quarter million strong. That single riot in 1969 now has over 1000 solidarity events every year all across the globe.

Our community is bigger and stronger than we were when this all started. We have more reason to hope, more resources to share, and more power to push forward thanks to our community’s pioneers. Together we will continue to learn from each other and lean on our collective strength, to resist violence, discrimination, and oppression, and together we will Persist with Pride.

With Hope,

Fernando Z. López

Executive Director

San Diego Pride