It is officially LGBTQIA+ History Month. This is an annual, month-long celebration recognizing the significance and history of the LGBTQIA+ community.
Every year, October has been a month of celebration for astonishing achievements accomplished in the history of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer individuals. This tradition began in 1994, when a high school teacher in Missouri, Rodney Wilson, believed there should be a month dedicated to honoring the celebration and teaching of gay and lesbian rights.
The month was chosen due to many historic events, including the first LGBT March on Washington on Oct. 14, 1979, as well as National Coming Out Day, which takes place every Oct. 11. This celebration was endorsed by the Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Network (GLSEN). This is not to be confused with Pride Month, which is celebrated during June.
Since its creation, LGBTQIA+ History Month has evolved significantly, eventually including additional holidays during the month, such as Spirit Day on Oct. 15, in which people wear the color purple in support of LGBT youth, and Ally Week, from Oct. 5 to Oct. 9. Ally Week is a period during which supporters against LGBT bullying are celebrated.
In honor of this month, the sisters of Lambda Tau Omega Sorority Inc., as well as the brothers and sisters of Lambda Delta Chi Co-Ed Fraternity Inc., will be hosting a panel to discuss in further detail the importance of LGBTQIA+ history. The event will take place on Monday, Oct. 19, from 8:15 to 9:15 p.m., on Zoom.
This event is intended to educate students about pivotal moments in this month's history, as well as the importance of advocating for the community, such as the purpose of using pronouns such as he, him, his or she, her and hers, for example. The brothers and sisters of each organization will also host pride-related trivia games and explain the meanings behind the pride flags, as well as explain different sexual orientations. The Zoom event promises to make a big impact in the Kean community, so students should make sure to register on Cougar Link as soon as possible to reserve a seat. For any additional information, please refer to the contact sheet through the event on Cougar Link.
Even though this year's remote LGBTQIA+ History month will look very different from usual, students and others who participate in these festivities can celebrate in a variety of ways, such as showing support on social media and being a positive voice and role model in the community. The events may take place in October but the support of the LGBTQIA+ community should be a daily staple, promoting acceptance over adversity.