The Arizona Democratic Party Proudly Supports LGBTQ PRIDE Month

The Arizona Democratic Party joins our LGBT Caucus members in celebrating LGBTQ Pride Month. On this day when millions in the LGBTQ community take to the streets for the Equality March, we redouble our efforts to ensure equality for all.

In late June of 1969, the NYC police raided a little bar in Greenwich Village on a mission to intimidate, harass, and arrest people because they were lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgendered.  The patrons weren’t having it.  What ensued was a riot that lasted for days, and created a wave that washed over the city, the nation, and the world.  Today, that historic event still resonates around the globe each June as we remember our history, and celebrate our authentic lives as part of a rich and diverse community.

The Stonewall Riots are considered the birth of the LGBTQ movement for equality.  Since 1969, Americans have seen tremendous progress.  Virtually all of the progress for LGBTQ Americans has occurred because of political involvement, social/political movement, and, in large part, because of the Democratic Party.  This month, the Arizona Democratic Party, and the LGBT Caucus, invite you to learn about the amazing history of the LGBTQ movement, and celebrate our cultures and our lives, as we continue to move forward towards a brighter and more inclusive future.

Here are a few highlights of the LGBTQ movement in America:

  • 1973, the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from the list of mental disorders.  

  • 1975, elected to the City Council of Ann Arbor, Michigan, Kathy Kozachenko became the first openly LGBT person ever elected to public office in the USA.

  • 1978, Harvey Milk was the first openly gay man elected to public office in California history, when he is inaugurated as San Francisco City Supervisor.  

  • 1979, The first National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights.  

  • 1980, Democratic National Convention held at New York City's Madison Square Garden, Democrats took a stance supporting gay rights, adding the following to their plank: "All groups must be protected from discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, language, age, sex or sexual orientation."

  • 1981, the AIDS Crisis began when the CDC published an article about five men who contracted a rare terminal pneumonia.  

  • 1982, Wisconsin became the first state to outlaw discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation.  

  • 1995, the Hate Crimes Sentencing Enhancement Act added sexual orientation to the list, allowing judges to impose harsher sentences, on par with crimes against other minority groups.  

  • 2000, Vermont became the first state to legalize civil unions for same-sex couples.

  • 2003, in Lawrence V. Texas, the Supreme Court of the United States decriminalized “homosexual conduct” nationwide.  

  • 2004, the nation’s first legal same-sex marriage occurred in Massachusetts.  

  • 2009, President Barack Obama signed the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd, Jr, Hate Crimes Prevention Act into law.  

  • 2011, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is repealed, allowing American service personnel to serve openly as LGBTQ citizens.

  • 2012, Barack Obama became the first sitting US president to publicly support the freedom for LGBT couples to marry.

  • 2012, the Democratic Party became the first major US political party in history to publicly support same-sex marriage on a national platform at the Democratic National Convention.  

  • 2012, Tammy Baldwin became the first openly gay politician and the first Wisconsin woman elected to the US Senate.  

  • 2015, the Supreme Court ruled that states cannot ban same-sex marriage, making it legal in all 50 states.  

  • 2016, Secretary of Defense Ash Carter announced that the Pentagon is lifting the ban on transgender people serving openly in the United States military.  

  • 2016, Kate Brown was sworn in as governor of Oregon, the highest-ranking LGBT person elected to office in the United States.  

  • 2017, the 7th District Court of Appeals ruled that the Civil Rights Act prohibits workplace discrimination against LGBT individuals.