Happy Pride! As a proud queer lady, I’ll say it’s very easy to get bogged down by all the negative news around LGBT issues in the U.S. and abroad. Focusing our awareness on discrimination, backwards lawmakers, and the inevitable pull of social change is incredibly important, but frankly, sometimes you need a breather. Identity and community should be fun, and moments of celebration are necessary.
Let’s kick off the month by taking a moment to appreciate some good stuff. Then let’s hit the dance floor, because I see some mouths that need kissing.
1 . President Obama reminding us of what's already happened.
In a moment that had me tearing up, President Obama made his last Public Declaration of Pride Month, reminding us of all the strides made during his terms, and what work there is to do: "Now, therefore, I, Barack Obama, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 2016 as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. I call upon the people of the United States to eliminate prejudice everywhere it exists, and to celebrate the great diversity of the American people.
In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this thirty-first day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand sixteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fortieth."
2. . LGBT people are finally, almost, showing up in Disney Films.
Folks have been asking for Captain America to get a boyfriend (even though we all already know it's Bucky), but what people really want is to see a Disney princess come out of the talking armoire. Elsa in particular is a fan favorite for being Disney's first lesbian.
Disney does was Disney wants to, however, and in this case they may have sneaked a pretty chill lesbian couple into the upcoming Finding Dory. We'll work our way up to princess, but these two are pretty cute.
3. . Target is standing up to bathroom bigots.
Everyone's been losing their damn minds about access to bathrooms for transgender people, though those people have been using whatever bathroom they need forever, whether you knew it or not. Lawmakers everywhere are trying to create discriminatory legislation that controls where people pee-pee, but one surprising and influential place isn't having it. Target announced that anyone can use the bathroom of the gender they identify with, and the haters can shove it.
4. . Xena is gonna be openly gay!
Xena: Warrior Princess is getting a reboot, and showrunners are planning to be clear about what we all already knew—Xena and Gabrielle were in love. Executive producer Javier Grillo-Marxuach said in a tumblr post responding to a fan, "Xena will be a very different show made for very different reasons. there is no reason to bring back Xena if it is not there for the purpose of fully exploring a relationship that could only be shown subtextually in first-run syndication in the 1990s. it will also express my view of the world - which is only further informed by what is happening right now - and is not too difficult to know what that is if you do some digging." Dig deep, baby!
5. . All the celebrities helping gay couples get engaged, come out, and renew their vows.
6. . Stormi's cookie empire.
Stormi is a transgender Girl Scout who was selling cookies door to door until some a-hole told her "nobody wants to buy cookies from a boy in a dress." People were so outraged by her story, and her subsequent reluctance to hit the pavement again, that they started buying her cookies online. She has sold over 3,000 boxes, and hopefully that guy only has sour things to eat.
7. . Just this mom celebrating her son's coming-out.
8. . As always, the friendship between Sir Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart.
Sure, only one of them is gay, but love like that inspires me all year long.