The battle for the rights of LGBTQI+ people began over half a century ago in New York City. A police raid on a gay bar, the Stonewall Inn, in June 1969, triggered days of rioting. A year later, the first Gay Pride parade made its way through the streets of Manhattan.

Since 1970, June has been considered Gay Pride Month. In many countries the LGBTQI+ community celebrates Christopher Street Day, which is named after the street where the Stonewall Inn was located. Loud and proud demonstrators mark the anniversary of when lesbians, gays, queers, transsexuals, transgender people, and drag queens took to the streets to fight for their rights. Back then, they wanted to be freed from the taint of illegality straight society had imposed on their sexual orientation. They wanted to be themselves and no longer be forced to live on the fringes of society. During the Stonewall riots, street children, residents, lesbians, gays and drag queens took part in the unrest. They occupied the bar and Christopher Street. A movement grew from this incident that changed society over the course of the decades, in Western democracies at least. Nevertheless, the fight is far from over, with homosexuality still deemed a crime – even a capital offense – in some countries.

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