During the month of June, Americans applaud the accomplishments of those in the LGBTQIA+ community in honor of Pride Month. "The View" joins in that celebration again in 2021.
Millions from the LGBT community and allies across the globe take part in monthlong celebrations, including pride parades, workshops and symposiums, as well as remembrances for members of the community who lost their lives to HIV/AIDS or hate crimes.
The acronym LGBT has expanded through the years to LGBTQIA+. According to OutRight Action International, the initialism stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and/or questioning, intersex, asexual and/or ally, and the plus sign acknowledges the "non-cisgender and non-straight identities which are not included in the acronym."
The rainbow LGBT flag created by Gilbert Baker is prominently displayed throughout the month. According to Baker's website, each color on the flag has a meaning: red for life, orange for healing, yellow for sunlight, green for nature, blue for harmony and violet for spirit.
"The View," the Emmy Award-winning daytime talk show, recognizes politicians, activists, athletes and entertainers in the LGBT community who've made history in the U.S.
On Friday, "The View" spotlighted the established and successful dancer, actor, and show business mogul, JoJo Siwa who announced earlier this year that she’s a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community as a pansexual to her millions of social media followers.
Learn more about entertainment superstars from the LGBT community.
Josie TotahA talented actress throughout her childhood, Josie Totah first came out as transgender in a personal essay released in August 2018 and plays trans character Lexi Haddad-DeFabrizio on the "Saved By the Bell" reboot. As she shapes the way for trans characters and actors, Totah is studying television writing at Chapman University in Southern California.
Lil Nas X
Known for his 2018 hit "Old Town Road," rapper, singer and songwriter Lil Nas X came out publicly as gay less than a year later on the last day of Pride Month in 2019. He continues to push boundaries in the music industry with his latest release “Montero (Call Me By Your Name),” where he's seen in the music video being seduced in the Garden of Eden, sliding down a pole from heaven to hell and twerking on Satan’s lap. In just three days, the racy music video amassed over 38 million views on YouTube.
Two-time Grammy nominee and former Disney star Demi Lovato has been in the spotlight for years, but decided to publicly announce that she identifies as nonbinary, changing pronouns to they-them.
Lovato said gender-neutral pronouns "best represents the fluidity I feel in my gender expression," adding, “I’m doing this for those out there that haven’t been able to share who they truly are with their loved ones.”
As a gay and Filipino person, "Superstore" and "Crazy Rich Asians" actor Nico Santos has been outspoken about queer Filipino representation in media. His "Superstore" character Mateo Liwanag is a passionate sales associate who's queer and an undocumented Filipino, helped bring awareness to both the LGBT and AAPI communities for six seasons.
On June 17, "The View" spotlighted multi-sport transgender athlete Sarah Rose Huckman, who helped overturn a ban on athletes who haven’t undergone gender confirmation surgery and get a bill across the finish line in New Hampshire that prohibits discrimination based on gender identity.
The daytime talk show also shed light on professional track athlete Nikki Hiltz, who came out as transgender and non-binary this year and is organizing the virtual race “Pride 5k” for the second year in a row. Hiltz is making a run to represent the U.S. in Tokyo by competing in the 2020 Olympic trials.
Learn more about remarkable athletes from the LGBT community.
Kye Allums, who played for the George Washington University women’s team, was the first transgender athlete to play NCAA Division I basketball. Despite the stress of how the media would portray him, Allums came out publicly at the Best Buy Classic in Minneapolis in a game against the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay on Nov. 13, 2010.
Swimmer Schuyler Bailar is not only the first openly transgender NCAA Division I swimmer, he's also the first transgender man to compete as a man in NCAA D1 that's publicly documented. He was originally recruited as a member of Harvard women’s swimming and diving team, but was offered a spot on the men’s team after transitioning and decided to swim on the men’s team.
In 2019, CeCé Telfer became the first openly transgender woman to win an NCAA title. Following her win, Donald Trump Jr. called the trans athlete’s success a "grave injustice" to women on Twitter.
The day after Trump Jr.'s tweet, Telfer posted a photo with her teammates on Instagram with the caption, "Suck my..... SUCCESS, cause I’m gonna keep on winning. Nationals here I come. Haters keep fueling my energy."
Texas state athletic rules only allowed wrestler Mack Beggs to compete in the league for his assigned sex. Although Beggs' State Championships are considered controversial by some because of the low doses of testosterone he was said to have been taking since his freshman year of high school, he won two consecutive state title state titles in 2017 and 2018.
Beggs has also called on state legislators to alter University Interscholastic League regulations that require athletes to compete under their born sex and stated that the debate over legislation like Senate Bill 6 – known as the Texas Bathroom Bill – has motivated him to advocate for transgender youth.
ACTIVISTS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE LEADERS
On June 11, "The View" honored activist Bayard Rustin, regarded as having been one of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s most influential advisers.
Rustin organized countless freedom marches and was the driving force behind the historic 1963 March on Washington. He is arguably a lesser-known civil rights leader perhaps because as an openly gay man, he was shamed, imprisoned and fired from leadership positions within the movement.
Learn more about groundbreaking activists and social justice leaders from the LGBT community.
Sherenté Mishitashin Harris
As an indigenous Narragansett TwoSpirit person, Sherenté Mishitashin Harris uses traditional dance to break down gender barriers. Harris realized during teen years that s/he was a TwoSpirit, which is a term used in indigenous communities to describe nonbinary gender and sexuality.
Coming from a large family of champion powwow dancers, Harris was named Dartmouth Powwow's head-person dancer in both 2017 and 2018.
Beverley Palesa Ditsie
Growing up in Soweto, South Africa, in the '80s, Beverley Palesa Ditsie helped liberate lesbians everywhere after she realized that she herself was gay and organized the first Pride March in Africa in the '90s. In 1995, she became the first known lesbian woman to address the United Nations, and the first person to openly address the importance of lesbian rights.
A black, Dominican American transgender teen, young Ashton Mota began his activism for the LGBT community by starting a Gay Straight Alliance at his middle school, eventually becoming a Human Rights Campaign Youth Foundation Ambassador at 14 years old.
Mota and Rebekah Brusehoff, who's also a transgender teen, teamed up to write the children's book "A Kids Book About Being Inclusive" which has the theme of accepting others.
Zoey Luna is one of the first transgender youth public figures. She made waves at just 12 years old when spoke at Transgender Day of Remembrance in West Hollywood, which was her first public appearance.
When Luna began her transition at 13, she faced bullies and discrimination at her school in California for using the girls' bathroom. The school tried to expel her, but after connecting with the American Civil Liberties Union to help file a complaint with the U.S. Department of Education, Luna was allowed to stay and the school was forced to update its anti-LGBTQ+ bullying policies.
On Friday, June 4, "The View" recognized Dr. Rachel Levine, who became America's first openly transgender federal official when confirmed by the Senate in March. She serves as President Joe Biden's assistant secretary of health, making history as the highest ranking openly transgender government official.
Learn more about groundbreaking politicians from the LGBT community.
Pete Buttigieg, more commonly known at the time as "Mayor Pete" of South Bend, Indiana, announced his presidential exploratory committee on Jan. 23, 2019, and followed up with an official campaign launch on April 14, 2019. On March 1, he ended his 2020 White House bid.
While he rose to fame during his presidential run, Buttigieg made history when the Senate confirmed him as transportation secretary on Feb. 2, making him the first openly gay person confirmed to a Cabinet post. He's responsible for helping to advance President Joe Biden's ambitious agenda of rebuilding the nation's infrastructure as well as fighting climate change.
A nonbinary, Black, Muslim woman, Mauree Turner knocked off a three-term, white male incumbent to win the Democratic nomination for a state legislative seat in Oklahoma and became the first nonbinary state legislator. She attributed her victory to connecting with underrepresented people in her district.
Gov. Kate Brown
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown is the first openly LGBT governor elected in the U.S. Openly bisexual, she wrote a short piece about coming out while serving in the state House of Representatives in 1992.
As former President Donald Trump's acting director of national intelligence, Richard Grenell is the first openly gay member of the U.S. Cabinet in an acting capacity. Prior to being appointed DNI, he was the ambassador to Germany -- making him the first openly LGBT ambassador for Trump -- and was the longest-serving U.S. spokesman at the United Nations.
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