In the summer of 1969, the Stonewall Inn was just another gay bar in Greenwich Village, New York City. It was a place for the LGBTQ+ community to gather, to dance, to be themselves in a world that often rejected and discriminated against them. But on the night of June 28th, everything changed. What started as a routine police raid turned into a historic event that would kickstart the modern LGBTQ+ rights movement. This is the story of the Stonewall Riots.

The Stonewall Inn was not your typical bar. It was run by the mafia, and it was one of the few places where gay, lesbian, and transgender individuals could openly socialize without fear of arrest. At the time, same-sex relationships were illegal in most states, and being gay or transgender was considered a mental illness. The LGBTQ+ community faced constant harassment and violence from the police, and they had few legal protections.

On the night of June 28th, police raided the Stonewall Inn, as they had done many times before. But this time, something was different. The patrons of the bar, tired of being targeted and mistreated, fought back. They refused to show their IDs, they resisted arrest, and they threw bottles and debris at the police. The rioting continued for several days, with LGBTQ+ individuals and allies taking to the streets in protest.

The Stonewall Riots were not the first time the LGBTQ+ community had fought back against police brutality and discrimination. But this time, the protests gained national attention. The uprising at the Stonewall Inn sparked a movement that would change the course of history.

In the months following the riots, LGBTQ+ activists organized and formed groups to fight for their rights. They marched, protested, and demanded change. In 1970, the first Pride parade was held in New York City, marking the one-year anniversary of the Stonewall Riots. This event would become an annual tradition, spreading to cities all over the world, and serving as a symbol of LGBTQ+ pride and resilience.

The Stonewall Riots also brought attention to the struggles of transgender individuals within the LGBTQ+ community. Marsha P. Johnson, a transgender woman of color, was a key figure in the riots and the early LGBTQ+ rights movement. Her activism and leadership helped pave the way for transgender rights and visibility.

The effects of the Stonewall Riots were felt far beyond New York City. The LGBTQ+ community, once silenced and marginalized, found their voice and their power. The riots inspired others to stand up and fight for their rights, and the movement spread across the country, leading to significant changes in laws and attitudes towards LGBTQ+ individuals.

In the years following the riots, LGBTQ+ rights organizations were formed, and more and more people came out and proudly identified as LGBTQ+. The movement also gained support from allies, including celebrities and politicians. In 2016, the Stonewall Inn was declared a National Monument, a testament to its significance in American history.

The impact of the Stonewall Riots is still being felt today. While there is still a long way to go in terms of achieving full equality for the LGBTQ+ community, the Stonewall Riots marked a turning point in the fight for rights and acceptance. It showed that change is possible when people come together and demand it.

The Stonewall Riots also serve as a reminder that the fight for LGBTQ+ rights is not over. Despite the progress that has been made, the community still faces discrimination and violence. Transgender individuals, in particular, face high rates of discrimination and hate crimes. It is crucial that we continue to honor the legacy of the Stonewall Riots by standing up against injustice and fighting for equality for all.

In conclusion, the Stonewall Riots were a pivotal moment in history that sparked a revolution. They brought attention to the struggles of the LGBTQ+ community and inspired a movement that continues to this day. The bravery and resilience of those who fought back against police brutality and discrimination at the Stonewall Inn should never be forgotten. It is up to all of us to carry on their legacy and continue the fight for full equality and acceptance for the LGBTQ+ community.

On behalf of,,, and , we would like to thank all of those that stood up for the LGBT community. If not for you, the opportunities that we have had to be ourselves and to actually be proud of who we are would not exist, or at least exist as it does today.  We tip our rainbow color hats to each of you.

🌈Dean, Gavin, Roger, & Nancy