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6 Black Womxn Share How They Make Pride Month Their Own
Courtesy of Kyanna Alexandra

6 Black Womxn Share How They Make Pride Month Their Own

A bold reminder to show up as their full selves, unapologetically.

Human Interest

The Stonewall Uprising in Manhattan has been dubbed the catalyst for creating change for the LGBTQ+ community. Over 50 years ago, the queer community at Stonewall Inn decided they had enough of police harassment and they decided to fight back like never before. With bottles, coins, and stones, they literally fought for their civil and human rights — enough was enough. It wasn’t the first time this occurred but there was something different about this riot on June 28, 1969. From then on, the last Sunday in June was celebrated as “Gay Pride Day” and it became a month-long galvanization that we now know as Pride Month.


Pride Month is more than rainbow flags, discounts, and corporate sponsorships. It’s about honoring a community that deserves celebration because love is love. The Library of Congress says, “The purpose of the commemorative month is to recognize the impact that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals have had on history locally, nationally, and internationally.” And for queer, Black folx it means truly acknowledging intersectionality. To honor some of those beautiful beings, we asked Black queer womxn what Pride means to them, how they show up as their full selves, and what we can do to better celebrate this community during June.

Pronouns: She, Her

Bridgette Young and her wife Veronica Paige

Courtesy of Bridgette Young

What Pride Month means to her:

Pride Month means the celebration of everyone who is like me who embraces a different sexual orientation separate from traditional standards. It’s a time for me to reflect on the community that has fought for the opportunities we currently have--such as marriage and protection from discrimination, although we still have work to do. Consequently, Pride month is a time to cultivate processes and pathways to enable and maintain longevity and continuous progress in the Black queer community.

Finally, visibility and the opportunity to shine at our full potential in personal and professional settings are key elements to success; because when we are loved, accepted, and respected— then we can truly be our authentic selves and rise to excellence.

What she loves most about being Black and queer:

Being Black and queer is truly a beautiful thing. Even though I was born and raised in Jamaica in a multicultural home, I was driven by the strength I saw in my mother and sisters. This motivated me to be a very strong and independent individual who thrives for success in all my endeavors and to be proud of who I am even with my differences.

I feel a sense of power and boldness embodied in immense creativity within our community. The Miami Black Pride Community is close-knit and supportive of the community’s accomplishments. This is something to be delighted and grateful for because support sometimes can be staggering.

How she celebrates Pride Month and makes it her own:

I make Pride Month my own by being more impactful with my visibility. I do this by participating in Pride Month activities at work, attending Pride Month events with my wife Veronica Paige, and living my truth by being my unapologetic authentic self. Last month, on May 24, 2022, Veronica and I got married. We have numerous publications covering our journey to marriage both locally in the U.S. and internationally.

As a multi-racial lesbian woman in America with Jamaican heritage, the intent is to create a platform through exposure and advocate for those who may be considering a similar journey as well as educate the audience who might lack understanding.

What she would like to see change about the celebration of Pride:

Even though we have celebrated many victories in the U.S., there is still lots of work to be done. There are still countless people within our community that face discrimination daily. Threats to queer life don’t have to be deadly, even though many times they are. They also include denied access to employment and healthcare, and forbidden acknowledgment and support to youth in schools. Minority groups are most affected, and frequently they are shunned by their families and end up homeless. The rejection within our community often leads to mental issues causing drug use and depression which is a cause of concern that need to be assessed and addressed.

Also, corporate America should do a better job at standing with the LGBTQ+ community-- not only during Pride Month but all 12 months of the year as active allies. Corporate companies are visible during Pride Month with market-focused ad campaigns and merchandising for profit. However, impactful support is needed in advocating for the queer community to protect our rights against politicians and states who are implementing laws to silence our community in schools and at work i.e. “Don’t Say Gay." Despite the current political climate, I have never seen a more enlightened and nurturing queer community. We are finally lifting as we carry, and I am honored to be a part of this community and to continue the work.

"Threats to queer life don’t have to be deadly, even though many times they are. Minority groups are most affected, and frequently they are shunned by their families and end up homeless. The rejection within our community often leads to mental issues causing drug use and depression which is a cause of concern that need to be assessed and addressed."

Poet, Singer, Songwriter

Pronouns: All

Courtesy of Kerrie Joy

What Pride Month means to them:

It means a month of reflection, remembrance, and mourning. It means rainbows, colorful store aisles, and bold expression. It means facing fears, counting blessings, and kicking down doors. It means coming outs, second chances, and firmer boundaries. I mean, these things happen daily but I do believe we become more hyper-aware and hyper-focused on them during this month. More than anything, this month, I do challenge myself a bit more to walk with my head higher, to be less apologetic, and to truly exist in Pride.

What they love most about being Black and queer:

The love, joy, and comfort that comes with being myself, unapologetically.

How they celebrate and make it their own:

I think it’s vital to celebrate all of the time. I stay in my pockets of dope, Black queer womxn where we see each other and validate each other because the world around us tends to find ways to erase us. So I surround myself with dope Black womxn and we celebrate every moment we can.

What they would like to see change about the celebration of Pride:

In general, I’d love to see the stories of Black, brown, and Indigenous people being centered in national Pride events, conversations, legislation, etc. The reality of intersectionality and compounded marginalization requires that we focus on those who have been closest to oppression. We don’t tend to practice that on a national level with Pride. We don’t really see it locally either. However, I do see certain people trying. I was happy to see when Pride in Denver moved its weekend because of Juneteenth.

But then again, that should already be one of the most celebrated moments of liberation in this country. Either way, we definitely have work to do if our Black queer and trans women are still one of the most targeted populations with personal and systemic violence. Until their worlds are safe, it’s impossible that any of ours truly could be. You should go out of your way to give love, reparations, and/or honor to a Black girl today. It’ll bless you.

"The reality of intersectionality and compounded marginalization requires that we focus on those who have been closest to oppression. We don’t tend to practice that on a national level with Pride. Either way, we definitely have work to do if our Black queer and trans women are still one of the most targeted populations with personal and systemic violence. Until their worlds are safe, it’s impossible that any of ours truly could be."

Content Creator for the LGBTQ and Body Positivity communities

Pronouns: She, Her

Courtesy of Kyanna Alexandra

What Pride Month means to her:

When I think of what Pride Month means to me, I think of freedom and the power it brings to myself and everyone else who is celebrating this Pride season, whether they're out or not. Pride to me means that I can present myself in any way that I see fit that is true to me, as well as a reminder that we as LGBTQ people are still fighting for basic human rights. We're constantly in a battle and at war with people who don't understand how queer people live, nor do they wish to accept us. So Pride Month as a whole is a constant reminder that we still have work to do, no matter how much progress has been made. I also feel a sense of entitlement, and I'm not sure where that comes from, but I know when June first rolls around, I know it's all about me and the LGBTQ community, and how we as queer people make this world a happier place simply by being ourselves. Also, we party the best.

What she loves most about being Black and queer:

What I love most about being Black and queer is the uniqueness that it brings and the diversity that comes with it. While I know that both are celebrated and hated in some spaces, it doesn't stop me from feeling powerful and in charge of myself. There's something rich and undyingly beautiful about being Black and a woman. My Blackness is powerful, it commands rooms and it puts fear in people who see Black as a threat. In the same breath, my queerness is fun and exciting. It's the extra cherry on top when people see my Black ass walk into a room, and to announce that I'm queer is exhilarating because I know it's another layer for people to understand and educate themselves about me and how I represent myself within both identities.

How she celebrates Pride Month and makes it her own:

When I celebrate Pride, I celebrate the entire month of June so hard and so fiercely that come July 1, I'm tired but in a good way. Pride Month is a great time for me to connect with other LGBTQ content creators, a way to attend parties that cater to the LGBTQ community and of course, attend the multiple parades across the state. But aside from attending parties and parades, I also like to attend events where queer people are the focus, such as panels, mixers, and networking functions. Being involved in the community and taking advantage of the hundreds of get-togethers that one can attend or get invited to is a way where I make Pride my own.

What she would like to see change about the celebration of Pride:

There are a couple of things that I would like to see changed when it comes to the celebration of Pride. One of the biggest things that annoy me, and probably a lot of other people, is the rainbow capitalism that happens rapidly throughout the last week of May. Companies rush to push out their Pride merchandise, of course, in hopes that LGBTQ consumers purchase them, but I can't help to believe that if a company isn't genuine about celebrating LGBTQ people 365 days out of the year, then I find the acts performative and leech-worthy to make a quick buck from the community.

The second thing that I feel needs to change is a bit more specific and comes within the content creation. Companies want to show their inclusivity by hiring us to promote their brand/business during Pride Month, but want to pay us in product and not for our time in creating the piece of content with a list of deliverables. Furthermore, companies undercut us as LGBTQ creators by not paying us our worth. It's things like these that create a gap between members of the LGBTQ community and those that are not. We are human, and we deserve to be paid as such and not any lesser due to the category we fall into.

We all get to celebrate Pride in whatever way we deem fit. No matter what happens, no matter what we go through in life, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel. I thought I would never get the chance to see the day when I go to Pride events and parties and meet people within the community because I didn't know where to start. I am the first and only person in my family to be a member of the LGBTQ community, and after what I have been through with my mother disowning me, it's days like these I thought I would never see, and I appreciate them the most.

"There's something rich and undyingly beautiful about being Black and a woman. My Blackness is powerful, it commands rooms and it puts fear in people who see Black as a threat. In the same breath, my queerness is fun and exciting. It's the extra cherry on top when people see my Black ass walk into a room, and to announce that I'm queer is exhilarating."

Pronouns: She, Her

Courtesy of JasandTee

What Pride Month means to JasandTee:

To us, Pride means so much more than a celebration, it's more than rainbows and parades. Pride is something we all have inside us. It's a way of life. It's our journeys, our past, and our future. Pride is who we are or who we ought to be. Most people aren't fully comfortable with who they are. If you spend 11 months not feeling comfortable or aligned within yourself, let the month of June be the one month you get out there and celebrate yourself, your boldness, your queerness, your rights, and your purpose. Pride is the voice for the ones who can't find their own.

What they love most about being Black and queer:

Being Black and queer is our identity and it makes us so proud to know how supple our ancestors were. What we love most about being Black and queer is the fact that we get to be a positive representation of what love looks like. Growing up, Black love wasn’t something you saw advertised. In fact, in most cases, most movies or shows reflected dysfunction within the Black community and Black households. Being able to love out loud is one of the best things that happened to us. Hiding our true selves is a form of dysfunction. Today, we are breaking that cycle by living in our truth. By being unapologetically Black and queer.

How they celebrate Pride Month and make it their own:

Jas and I celebrate Pride by going to some of our favorite stores like Target and Old Navy to shop their Pride collection. We also like to go to our local Pride events with some of our closest friends.

What they would like to see change about the celebration of Pride:

We would like to see more heterosexual people celebrate Pride. You don’t have to be a part of the LGBTQ+ community to celebrate queer individuals. We say this because most people can attest to knowing someone who is queer and no matter their place in your life they should be celebrated. Choosing to stay silent in fear of association isn’t much of a celebration.

Being content creators has allowed us to tap into advocacy. Having a platform has also allowed us to connect with more people than ever before. Hearing all the stories and watching the growth of our followers has inspired us to continue to be a voice in our LGBTQ+ community. Our goal is to be able to reach people all over the world. This entire journey has been eye-opening. We realized how much exclusion and discrimination the LGBTQ+ community face on a daily basis.

"What we love most about being Black and queer is the fact that we get to be a positive representation of what love looks like. Being able to love out loud is one of the best things that happened to us. Hiding our true selves is a form of dysfunction. Today, we are breaking that cycle by living in our truth. By being unapologetically Black and queer."

Community Builder, Radio Host, Social Media Guru, DJ

Pronouns: She, Her

Courtesy of Demi Harvey

What Pride Month means to her:

Pride Month is a celebration of life, love, community, and resistance. It’s an opportunity to live life to the fullest and share in that joy with others.

What she loves most about being Black and queer:

My uniqueness! My experience is one of a kind. It’s a blending of cultures. It is everything.

How she celebrates and makes Pride Month her own:

I love trying new things, visiting new spaces, and meeting new people so I make a point of that every Pride. Expanding my horizons and getting out of my comfort zone.

What she wants to see change about the celebration of Pride:

I want my people to feel safe and free to be themselves. There’s lots of ways in which that is challenged at national Pride celebrations, but I want queer people to know that there is community out there for you beyond national Pride celebrations.

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Featured image courtesy of Kyanna Alexander

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