How Did the Rainbow Flag Become a Symbol of LGBT Pride?


© Andrey Danilovich/

How Did the Rainbow Flag Become a Symbol of LGBT Pride?

June hasِ long beenِ recognized asِ LGBT Pride Month, inِ honor ofِ the Stonewall riots, whichِ tookِ place inِ New York City inِ June 1969.
During Pride Month, itِ isِ not uncommon toِ seeِ the rainbow flag beingِ proudly displayed asِ a symbol forِ the LGBT rights movement.
But howِ didِ that flag becomeِ a symbol ofِ LGBT pride?

It goesِ backِ to 1978, whenِ theِ artist Gilbert Baker, anِ openly gay man andِ a drag queen, designed theِ firstِ rainbow flag.
Baker laterِ revealed thatِ heِ was urged byِ Harvey Milk, oneِ ofِ the firstِ openly gay elected officials inِ the U.S., toِ create a symbol ofِ pride forِ the gay community.
Baker decided toِ makeِ that symbol a flag becauseِ he sawِ flags asِ the mostِ powerful symbol ofِ pride.

The firstِ versions ofِ the rainbow flag wereِ flown onِ June 25, 1978, forِ the San Francisco Gay Freedom Day parade.
Baker andِ a team ofِ volunteers hadِ made themِ byِ hand, andِ now heِ wanted toِ mass-produce theِ flag forِ consumption byِ all.
However, becauseِ of production issues, theِ pink andِ turquoise stripes wereِ removed andِ indigo wasِ replaced byِ basic blue, whichِ resulted inِ the contemporary six-striped flag (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, andِ violet).

It wasِ notِ until 1994 thatِ the rainbow flag wasِ trulyِ established asِ the symbol forِ LGBT pride.
That year Baker madeِ a mile-long version forِ the 25th anniversary ofِ the Stonewall riots.
Now theِ rainbow flag isِ anِ international symbol forِ LGBT pride andِ can beِ seen flying proudly, duringِ bothِ the promising times andِ the difficult ones, allِ around theِ world.