- Posted September 26, 2009 by
North Coast, California
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Same-sex marriage: Civil right vs. states' rights
Courage of Our Convictions
National Coming Out Day is observed on October-11 by members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) communities and their allies. Participants wear identifying symbols, such as the pink triangle and the rainbows flag to demonstrate their presence in all walks of life, all ages and all ethnic groups.
The pink triangle, possibly the most popular gay pride symbol, was originally used as a Nazi concentration camp badge to denote homosexual men. The rainbow flag appeared in the first Gay Pride March in San Francisco after the Stonewall Riots.
National Coming Out Day was founded in 1988, in celebration of the Second National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights one year earlier, in which over 500,000 people marched on Washington for gay and lesbian equality. National Coming Out Day events are aimed at raising awareness of the LGBT community among the general populace in an effort to give a familiar face to the LGBT rights movement.
The goal in 2009 is to surpass 1,000,000 participants. If my personal financial circumstances were different, I'd be there again.
I remember the original event very well. I had just "come out" and was there with the LGBA Marching Band, the same group that made history by being the first openly gay organization to participate in a Presidential Inauguration. We all had high hopes that circumstances would soon change, that people would see that we are really just like them. struggling with the same life issues.
Twenty-two years later, a life time for some, there is marriage equality in only six states, with DOMA preventing any real chance for equality. I only hope it doesn't take another 22 years to reach full equality.