It’s LGBT History Month (LGBTHM)!
To celebrate, we’ve rounded up just some of the celebrities, activists and public figures who have shown dedication to helping the LGBT community.
Openly bisexual, the singer and actress is an outspoken LGBT equality advocate. She was a leading activist for the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” , set up the Born This Way Foundation in 2012 and through her music she continues to fight for LGBT rights. In 2016, Gaga visited LGBT homeless youth to open up about PTSD.
“I’m more interested in helping my fans to love who they are, and helping them to reject prejudice and reject those things that they’re taught from society to not like themselves, to feel like freaks, that they’re not wanted.”
Harvey Milk was a visionary human rights leader, who became the first openly gay person to be elected to public office. He served eleven months before he was assassinated. The Harvey Milk Foundation was initiated by his nephew to continue his vision of equality.
“The important thing is not that we can live on hope alone, but that life is not worth living without it.”
The world’s most famous drag queen gave visibility to the LGBT community in the 90’s , consistently discusses equality and acceptance, and is now the host of ‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’.
“If you can’t love yourself, how the hell are you gonna love somebody else?”
Sir Ian McKellen
As one of the co-founders of gay rights charity Stonewall, and with his constant support to equality causes around the world, McKellen is every bit the activist as he is an actor.
“It’s only fair that stable gay relationships of long standing should have the same rights and responsibilities as married couples”
Page came out as gay in 2014 at the Human Right’s Campaign. Since then, she’s become one of the most active, visible, and vocal celebrities within the LGBT community.
“We deserve to experience love fully, equally, without shame, and without compromise.”
Mandela became a hero to the global gay-rights movement for helping make South Africa a pioneer in outlawing anti-gay discrimination.
“As I have said, the first thing is to be honest with yourself. You can never have an impact on society if you have not changed yourself… Great peacemakers are all people of integrity, of honesty, but humility.”
The Happy Hippie Foundation is a nonprofit organisation founded by Miley Cyrus. It’s mission is to help homeless youth, LGBTQ youth and other vulnerable populations.
“No one should have to hide who they really are, no matter what his or her name, gender, status or orientation.”
Dan Savage, with his husband Terry Miller, founded the It Gets Better Project. The project reassures LGBT youth and tries to make a better world for future LGBT generations.
“The only way to get gay issues off the front pages of Canadian newspapers is to grant gay and lesbian people our full civil equality and leave it alone.”
In 2015, Kerry Washington was the recipient of GLAAD Media’s Vanguard award and has continued to be an active ally to the LGBT community.
“That is why the work of GLAAD is so important. We need more LGBT representation in the media. We need more LGBT characters and more LGBT storytelling. We need more diverse LGBT representation and by that, I mean lots of kinds of different kinds of LGBT people, living all kinds of lives, and this is big—we need more employment of LGBT people in front of and behind the camera!”
Australian-born English gay rights activist Peter Tatchell has been outspoken about gay rights since the 60’s. He’s worked tirelessly to try to repeal all anti-gay laws in the UK and is the founder of the Peter Tatchell Foundation, a human rights organisation.
“Don’t accept the world as it is. Dream of what the world could be, and then make it happen”
Ellen is an openly lesbian public figure, and in 2016 received the Medal of Freedom from President Obama for her influence on gay rights.
“Do we have to worry about who’s gay and who’s straight? Can’t we love everybody and judge them by the car they drive?”
The Years & Years frontman is openly gay and pushes the boundaries of sexuality through his music, style and performances. He often speaks about the need for more gay role models and in doing so, has become one.
“What I have to say is ‘I’m here, I’m queer and yes sometimes I’m afraid, but I am never ashamed because I am proud of who I am.’”
Laverne Cox is the first transgender woman of color to have a leading role on a mainstream scripted TV show, and frequently speaks out on transgender and gender rights.
“If you have a problem with people living their lives and authentically being who they are, then you need to do some soul searching.”
The late George Michael was a defiant gay icon. His openness from the start about his sex life, and his campaigning for LGBT rights, offered support to so many.
“I would advise any gay person that being out in the real sense can never happen too soon.”