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Paraders carry a large rainbow flag along Summers Street in downtown Charleston for the Rainbow Pride Parade June 4.

Starting with the Stonewall Riots, in 1969, June became also known as Pride Month, celebrating the history of the queer rights movement. Though Pride Month is definitely still a celebration, I feel as though a lot of people, both queer and not, forget what got us to where we are in the first place, which was a lot of very brave people, before, after and during the Stonewall Riots.

According to, the term lesbian was used as early as 1732, although 1649 was the first time two women were punished for displaying lesbian behavior in what is now the U.S, being charged for “lewd behavior.” There are other interesting figures who were queer, or possibly queer, such as James Buchanan, who had a long term relationship with William Rufus King, living with him until 1853, when King died.

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