President Donald Trump has decided against issuing an official proclamation for Pride Month in the United States—instead opting to honour ‘Great Outdoors Month’ this June.
In doing so, Trump has broken with a recent tradition of US leaders recognising the historic LGBT+ movement.
In 1999 Bill Clinton was the first US President to issue a Pride Month proclamation, although George W. Bush did not follow suit during his presidency.
President Obama issued a Pride proclamation every single year that he was in office, as well as holding official events at the White House.
In his 2016 proclamation, Obama wrote: “The fight for dignity and equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people is reflected in the tireless dedication of advocates and allies who strive to forge a more inclusive society.
“They have spurred sweeping progress by changing hearts and minds and by demanding equal treatment—under our laws, from our courts, and in our politics.
“This month, we recognise all they have done to bring us to this point, and we recommit to bending the arc of our Nation toward justice.”
This June marks the first anniversary of the attack on the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida where 49 people were killed, and 53 more were wounded, most of whom were queer people of colour.
At the time of the shooting last year, Trump was asked whether he would be issuing a Pride proclamation, if he were elected.
“I would look into it,” he told ABC News.
“And I feel so badly what happened [in Orlando]. And we have to do something about it.”
However, it seems Trump has gone out of his way to avoid officially supporting Pride month—instead proclaiming June to be: National Home Ownership Month, African-American Music Appreciation Month, National Caribbean-American Heritage Month and - just before pulling out of the Paris climate accord - National Ocean Month and Great Outdoors Month.
Some Twitter users have speculated that this might be the only recognition the Trump administration will offer:
Many Pride events in the US this year will not be celebratory parades, but demonstrations against the Trump administration.
Tens of thousands of people are preparing to attend the Equality March for Unity and Pride in Washington DC on June 11 with the protest to pass by the White House and conclude at the National Mall.