Barack Obama | Gay Pride | Gay Rights | News

President Obama Issues LGBT Pride Month Proclamation

President Obama issued the following LGBT Pride Month proclamation late this afternoon on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of Stonewall:


Obama Forty years ago, patrons and supporters of the Stonewall Inn in New York City resisted police harassment that had become all too common for members of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community. Out of this resistance, the LGBT rights movement in America was born. During LGBT Pride Month, we commemorate the events of June 1969 and commit to achieving equal justice under law for LGBT Americans.

LGBT Americans have made, and continue to make, great and lasting contributions that continue to strengthen the fabric of American society. There are many well-respected LGBT leaders in all professional fields, including the arts and business communities. LGBT Americans also mobilized the Nation to respond to the domestic HIV/AIDS epidemic and have played a vital role in broadening this country's response to the HIV pandemic.

Due in no small part to the determination and dedication of the LGBT rights movement, more LGBT Americans are living their lives openly today than ever before. I am proud to be the first President to appoint openly LGBT candidates to Senate-confirmed positions in the first 100 days of an Administration. These individuals embody the best qualities we seek in public servants, and across my Administration -- in both the White House and the Federal agencies -- openly LGBT employees are doing their jobs with distinction and professionalism.

The LGBT rights movement has achieved great progress, but there is more work to be done. LGBT youth should feel safe to learn without the fear of harassment, and LGBT families and seniors should be allowed to live their lives with dignity and respect.

My Administration has partnered with the LGBT community to advance a wide range of initiatives. At the international level, I have joined efforts at the United Nations to decriminalize homosexuality around the world. Here at home, I continue to support measures to bring the full spectrum of equal rights to LGBT Americans. These measures include enhancing hate crimes laws, supporting civil unions and Federal rights for LGBT couples, outlawing discrimination in the workplace, ensuring adoption rights, and ending the existing "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policy in a way that strengthens our Armed Forces and our national security. We must also commit ourselves to fighting the HIV/AIDS epidemic by both reducing the number of HIV infections and providing care and support services to people living with HIV/AIDS across the United States.

These issues affect not only the LGBT community, but also our entire Nation. As long as the promise of equality for all remains unfulfilled, all Americans are affected. If we can work together to advance the principles upon which our Nation was founded, every American will benefit. During LGBT Pride Month, I call upon the LGBT community, the Congress, and the American people to work together to promote equal rights for all, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 2009 as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. I call upon the people of the United States to turn back discrimination and prejudice everywhere it exists.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this first day of June, in the year of our Lord two thousand nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-third.



NOTE: Commenters point out that President Bill Clinton nominated San Francisco Board of Supervisors Member Roberta Achtenberg, to be Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity in February 1993. Achtenberg won confirmation three months later in May after a vicious battle with the late Senator Jesse Helms, who called Achtenberg a "damn lesbian" and said "I'm not going to put a lesbian in a position like that. If you want to call me a bigot, fine."

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  1. So president "O" is pulling the same bullshit New York City is pulling during pride month,using June as the time for lip service,just like New York is using this month as a scam to get gay dollars.Since gays are now wise that New York is NOT the gay friendly city we all once knew.Just as president Obama is not the allleged "fierce advocate" for LGBT rights his sorry ass claimed to be.Man Please!

    BTW BARACK,civil unions is NOT the same as "Marriage" its that same separate but equal bullshit we've been fed by your kind (politicians) for WAY to long.Instead of trying to bullshit your way around the gays just admit that you are a fucktard bigot and that you DO NOT support full equality for us gay and lesbian tax paying citizens of America.You are a worthless son of a bitch and I am all the more glad I stayed home during election day.Fuckin' Idiot!

    Posted by: steinway | Jun 1, 2009 6:51:12 PM

  2. It's a start. I hope.

    Posted by: Jim | Jun 1, 2009 6:53:12 PM

  3. Is this not on

    Posted by: audiored | Jun 1, 2009 6:53:20 PM

  4. He is "committed to ending DADT?"

    Come again? I'm not sure commitment means saying you're going to do something you can do with the stroke of a pen - yet not doing it.

    Posted by: Alan | Jun 1, 2009 6:56:26 PM

  5. I can't believe some of the negative comments I am reading here. We get this after 8 years of Bush and this is how some of you respond? This would never have been possible 4 years ago. I for one, am thankful that we have a president who appreciates and respects us. So we don't IMMEDIATELY get to use the exact words we want to use, but we are making progress. He can help us, but the dude has a lot on his plate right now. Glass half empty, or glass half full?

    Posted by: Mike | Jun 1, 2009 6:57:56 PM

  6. This press release is nowhere to be found on the official White House website.....

    Posted by: Carl | Jun 1, 2009 7:02:41 PM

  7. And, again, NO, Cheney did NOT say he approves of gay marriages.

    He said he approves of gay marriages THAT STATES approve of.

    If they don't, he thinks that's fine, too.

    Nothing like choosing "states rights" over your own daughter's, daughter-in-law's, and grandchild's equality.

    Of course, white rich lesbians don't have to worry about such things.

    Posted by: Michael @ | Jun 1, 2009 7:04:14 PM

  8. First let me preface this buy saying that I voted for Obama but I'm glad some of my gay friends are staring to wake up to his claims of being a "fierce advocate". I said it over and over to my friends espousing all the things that Obama was going to do for us that it wasn't going to happen, he was just going to be like all the politicians that promised us the same thing for our money and support, I was the traitor, half the people I met that I discussed the issue with were sure I was going to vote for McCaine and how dare I say that Obama wasn't going to fight for us, he was a new kind of politician. Hope! Change! as they said.

    And here we are, I hate that I am not surprised by this but Obama does it once again, all talk and no action. I understand that DOMA is a bigger fish to fry but Obama could end DADT in a matter of days and chooses not to do so.

    So sure, throw is this tiny, perhaps symbolic but completely useless bone of mere recognition of our existence, I guess that is all I really even thought would possibly happen in the first place.

    Posted by: John M | Jun 1, 2009 7:11:09 PM

  9. Could be a lot worse, could be a lot better. Not much need to parse it because there isn't much new here.

    Posted by: Paul R | Jun 1, 2009 7:15:44 PM

  10. When Hillary lost the nomination, I was stunned. All the gays were backing Obama. Why? I couldn't believe it. Stunned I tell you! I railed for weeks when she lost the nomination. So, I've been stuck with someone who doesn't really support me at all. Great. Thanks.
    Now I read this proclamation and I have to say... nice. I can't believe he did anything at all much less something almost helpful. I'm stunned. Stunned I tell you!

    Posted by: 1fanboy2many | Jun 1, 2009 7:22:41 PM

  11. Well, the optimistic side of me thinks if he gives a grand proclamation on day 1 of June, maybe there are (real) changes by the end of the month. Or am I just high?

    It is a big deal to get a whole month. A summer month nonetheless!!

    Posted by: Gino | Jun 1, 2009 7:32:53 PM

  12. @1FANBOY2MANY ... Uh, Obama took a pointer from Hillary ... she came out *guffaw* with her LGBT Pride Month Proclamation SEVERAL HOURS before him. *waits for all the Obama trolls to come a-knockin'*

    Posted by: Toby | Jun 1, 2009 7:33:55 PM

  13. B.F.D.
    Today, former VP Dick Cheney did far more for gay rights with his words...

    Posted by: Barry | Jun 1, 2009 7:39:01 PM

  14. @ Gino:

    Answer: high.

    Posted by: Michael @ | Jun 1, 2009 7:43:23 PM

  15. civil unions are inferior to federal marriage

    go fuck yourself, Obama

    Hillary's statement beat yours
    so you must have egg on your face to get out
    there before the close of business June 1st.

    Posted by: Martha | Jun 1, 2009 7:46:24 PM

  16. I just wanted to say, I betcha part of Hillary Clinton released her proclamation hoping to one-up Barack and make us gays say "wow we sure missed out, she could have been our President!" At least that's what I said when I read hers, because I know that she is actually taking action to extend same-sex partner benefits to the people underneath her. Her proclamation also contained action verbs. Although I guess Hillary is in a safer position to work for gay rights than Obama is. Is Obama automatically the ticket for 2012? Sucks that we can't have Hillary yet. Maybe 2016?

    Posted by: Derrick | Jun 1, 2009 7:50:39 PM

  17. I will add though that Obama's paragraph on equality for all being necessary and affecting all of us is very nice. So he's on our side about marriage, he just doesn't know that he is yet. :P

    Posted by: Derrick | Jun 1, 2009 7:52:10 PM

  18. Words! Words! I'm so sick of words!
    I get words all day through;
    First from him, now from you! Is that all you blighters can do?

    Posted by: Eliza | Jun 1, 2009 7:57:19 PM

  19. Big Fucking Deal
    Dick Cheney did more for gay rights today and tomorrow with his statements.

    Posted by: Barry | Jun 1, 2009 8:08:37 PM

  20. You don't get something unless you fight for it. The "sit down, shut up" strategy that some accommodationists want will get us nowhere.

    So either fight for your rights or don't. No one is going to hand them to you.

    PS Obama is a cretin.

    Posted by: Dan | Jun 1, 2009 8:17:58 PM

  21. ok he said civil unions and not marriage equality!!! seperate but equal! im not down with that! it didnt work for blacks and whites it wont work now!

    Posted by: Antoinette Brown | Jun 1, 2009 8:18:30 PM

  22. "I continue to support measures to bring the full spectrum of equal rights to LGBT Americans."

    What a bunch of bull. He does not support THE full spectrum of equal rights, which would include marriage.

    Posted by: Cyd | Jun 1, 2009 8:19:11 PM

  23. Gee, I miss being called "gay". The word doesn't appear, except as an initial in that car-crash acronym.

    Imagine that, a Presidential commemoration of Stonewall where the word "gay" doesn't appear.

    When you meet someone, do you say, "I'm LGBTQ." ?
    And spare me the sanctimony, I'm aware there were trannies at Stonewall. But what have bisexuals done for us?

    GAY. I'm sick of how the PC language police on "our side" have hounded us out saying this, as if it's 'insensitive. Fuck off, GAY men and women have done the most heavy lifting in this fight, and bisexual and trans people ought to at least ACKNOWLEDGE that. Drag queens threw some bottles at Stonewall, great. But it was GAY men and women going to court working for gay rights, organizing marches, responding to the AIDS crisis in committed, concrete ways, for decades that made the difference.
    Ordinary gay men and women coming out to their co-workers and family, a quiet revolution. But we have to share the glory with streetfighting drag queens from one night in 1969, forever.

    GAY is the word, something i'm proud to be, and as fond as i am of bisexuals and trans people, it's not ALL about you. Do we ever get any thanks? No, just more demands, and offense if it's suggested that wanting to change your sex is different than loving the same sex. Sorry for the rant. It sticks in my craw though.

    Posted by: Severine | Jun 1, 2009 8:35:27 PM

  24. His signature on a gay-pride-month proclamation is all well and good, I suppose.

    But inviting a handful of gay soldiers to dinner would have been more substantive as meaningless gestures go.

    Posted by: adamblast | Jun 1, 2009 8:35:51 PM

  25. Olson/Cheny 2012? WTF?!!!!

    Posted by: Jim Watson | Jun 1, 2009 8:35:56 PM

  26. « | 1 2 3 4 »

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