Following the horrific events that have occurred this week in Orlando, rather than dwell on tragedy and give more coverage to homophobia I have decided to highlight some of the incredible LGBTQA+ people who have changed this world for the better. This week we lost 49 people, any of who could have had the potential to have queered and changed the world and history for the better. So here I have presented what is by no means a definitive list but the beginning of a reminder of what incredible things queer people have done and will do, despite the hardships and prejudices they inevitably face.
Harvey Milk. Laverne Cox. Marsha P Johnson. Audre Lorde. Sir Ian McKellan. Oscar Wilde. Alan Turing. Frida Kahlo. Panti Bliss. Willi Ninja. Larry Kramer. Ellen DeGeneres. Ellen Page. Sir Elton John. Conchita Wurst. Silvia Rivera. RuPaul. Russel T. Davies. Quentin Crisp. Allen Ginsburg. William S. Burroughs. Alan Bennett. Ryan Murphy. Mary Kay Henry. Andy Cohen. Neil Patrick Harris. Sia Furler. Alexander McQueen. Jane Lynch. Dan Savage. Tyler Oakley. Alexander the Great. Walt Whitman. Gertrude Stein. James Baldwin. Christine Jorgensen. Leonard Matlovich. Marcel Proust. Alice Walker. Lady Gaga. Caitlyn Jenner. Miss Major. Jeremy Benthan. Graham Norton. Ali Campbell. Lois Weaver. David Bowie. Sir Elton John. Robert Pacitti. Emily Dickenson. Jeanette Winterson. Carol Ann Duffy. Ma Rainey. Lynn Conway. Richard Isay. Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon. Martin Duberman. Jose Sarria. Bayard Rustin. Janet Mock. Chad Griffin. The Stonewall Rioters. Morrisey. Richard Lusimbo.
These are just a few of the names that deserve recognition, and I would greatly appreciate if anyone in the comments section would like to write more and explain their importance. Unfortunately I do not have the space in this article to explain what each of these people did, but hopefully this will encourage those who aren’t too familiar with their queer figures to research some of these people and see their influence on the world. But ultimately, anyone who is willing to confidently walk in a Pride march, dance in a gay club, hold hands with their partner, speak out against homophobia, publicly post support, or just proudly inhabit a queer time and place and embrace the culture that comes with it despite adversity is someone who deserves recognition. Love will always win out over hate, the LGBTQA+ movement is founded and fought with love so against any foe this community will always be there proving the undefeatable power of love.