Every year the month of June is recognised as LGBT Pride Month, chosen to commemorate the Stonewall riots that took place in New York in June 1969. As such, June is a month for solidarity, support and celebration within the LGBT+ community, to recognise the people within it and the impact they can have to society and the on-going struggles they all face.
In this blog entry, we want to profile four different LGBTQA people, showcasing the diverse experiences that exist within the community:
Sir Derek Jacobi, CBE
Sir Derek Jacobi (CBE) aged 81, is a British actor and stage director who has been acting on stage and screen since the early 1960’s. In addition to his work as an actor, Derek Jacobi has been openly gay and in a relationship with his partner for over 40 years, and the entered into a registered partnership in March 2006, a few months after same-sex civil partnerships became legally recognized in the United Kingdom. Jacobi was a Grand Marshal of the 46th New York City Gay Pride March in 2015.
Mhairi Black MP is a Scottish Politician and member of the SNP. Currently aged 23, Mhairi is the “Baby of The House” which is an informal and unofficial title given to the youngest of the British Parliament. When she was first elected in May 2015, she was only 20 years old, making her one of the youngest elected British MP’s in 300 years. Along with other LGBT MPs from the SNP, she expressed her support for same-sex marriage prior to the referendum in Ireland. Asked about her decision to “come out”, she replied “I’ve never been in”.
Frida Kahlo de Rivera (born Magdalena Carmen Frida Kahlo y Calderón; July 6, 1907 – July 13, 1954) was a Mexican painter who’s work explored questions of identity, postcolonialism, gender, class, and race in Mexican society. She struggled throughout her life with health issues including contracting polio as a child which caused her to have one leg shorter than the other and later in life she was involved in a traffic accident, severely injuring her and resulting in her having illnesses and pain for the rest of her life. Kahlo was an openly bisexual woman, marrying a man and having relationships with many women in her life, most famously the entertainer Josephine Baker.
Laura Jane Grace
Laura Jane Grace is the lead singer, songwriter and guitarist of the punk rock band Against Me! Laura Jane Grace had a lifelong struggle with gender dysphoria as well as dealing with depression and feeling isolated, and all those themes are encapsulated in Against Me!’s album “Transgender Dysphoria Blues.” Speaking to website Grantland in 2014, Grace said: “Dealing with depression is really what a lot of that’s about. On the surface level, the album may be transgender-themed, but underneath it, there are those universal themes — alienation, depression, not being happy — that I think that everybody can really identify with.”
Alys Einion June 20th, 2018
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