Pride Month Choose Love

The month of June is the month of Pride and we’re not talking one of the seven deadly sins – we’re talking about being part of the LGBTQ+ community and celebrating being able to be open, recognize the progress that has been made, but also protest and bring to light the challenges that are still present in the world for queer people all around the world. The national recognition of Pride Month itself is fairly new: President Bill Clinton declared June “Gay & Lesbian Pride Month” in 1999 and 2000; President Barack Obama declared June LGBT Pride Month the every year during his presidency; same-sex marriage was made legal across the US on June 26, 2015; and most recently, President Joe Biden declared June LGBTQ+ Pride Month in 2021. But, the history of Pride and records of the LGBTQ+ community have been around for decades centuries (bisexuality was the norm in ancient China, military same-sex relationships in Athens and Greece, two-spirits in tribal histories, etc.) and yet, being queer is still being treated as if an abnormality. Majority of homeless teens in shelters have been kicked out of their homes because of their sexuality or gender identity (or the runaway to avoid abuse); transgender people are still being targeted and assaulted at alarming rates; there is outrage when a same-sex couple or queer person is represented in the media despite the overwhelming heterosexual relationships that are shown in kid shows and beyond.

Why is Pride So Important?

Pride is Love

Pride is important for several reasons. As previously mentioned, it is to celebrate the accomplishments, but also to voice the issues that are still experienced by the LGBTQ+ community including the still very real homophobia and transphobia that is experienced daily. It is also important to celebrate Pride because it allows those who are out to find their family – whether it is because they don’t relate to their straight family and friends or because they lost their family and friends when they came out. It is to provide queer people with a support system them may not have or never knew existed. It allows those who are not even out yet to know they are free to be them (and come out when they are ready). Over the past decade, the people who identify as queer has DOUBLED because people feel more comfortable talking about sexuality. In fact, more young adults are identifying as non-binary/gender fluid because they realize they don’t find into one box as the generations before would force themselves into. Having that support from people ine your community can boost an individual persons self-esteem, mental health, and even provide more sexual health resources than are provided as many resources tend to be geared towards straight and cis people.

What is the Adult Toy Industry Doing?

Inclusivity has been essential when working with the LGBTQ+ community. More and more manufacturers are developing products that have versatile uses for penis and vagina-owners including a new line from Evolved called Gender X (which removes the sex specific terms from their descriptions). Our in-house toy reviewer, Lady Genevieve, writes the Sexy Scoop while being mindful to avoid using sex specific terms and explains how toys can be used for everyone.It has been important that retailers have been respecting their employees and customers sexuality and gender expressions everyday and not just during the month of June. Fantasy Gifts NJ has been celebrating and supporting local college LGBTQ+ groups as well as working to ensure that there is a product for EVERYONE. No one person or group can succeed without the support of everyone. Happy Pride to all!

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