San Marcos High School ~ Santa Barbara, CA

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The King's Page

The King's Page

Pride Month

Isabelle Chabinyc
Students celebrate at SM Pride Festival

How do students take pride? On campus, “Pride” is associated with school assemblies, campus events, or football games. But, starting on June 1st, we recognize that for many queer students, Pride is also a right worth fighting for. 



Pride Month began as a way to commemorate the 1969 Stonewall Uprisings, one of the most revolutionary LGBTQ+ movement in U.S. history. But what originally started out as a single Sunday at the end of June, quickly grew into a month-long celebration of culture, resiliency, and joy!  



So what does it mean today? Another holiday that corporations can profit off of? Like come on Target if you are going to make a dress that is the equivalent of a pride flag that got confused, at least make it 29.99 or lower.


The increasing commercialization of this June event often makes it difficult to remember why we must have Pride in the first place. 


We can not afford to forget—higher than the general teen population, the Trevor Project reports that 39% of LGBTQ+ young people have seriously considered attempting suicide this past year; higher than the general teen population, the Trevor Project reports that nearly ⅖ of LGBTQ+ youth have been victims of sexual violence; as of May 2024, the ACLU has counted 515 anti-LGBTQ+ bills proposed in the United States; outside of the U.S., queerness is legally criminalized in 64 countries, while only 33 recognize gay marriage—behind each statistic is a story.


During Pride month, we demand attention for these stories, and we demand attention for action. The Trevor Project is currently running a Pride-celebratory program that allows donors to contribute to LGBTQ+ youth changemakers. The Human Rights Campaign is continuing to uplift their Trans Justice Initiative which seeks to, “promote sexual health and equity.”


At the core of campaigns like these is celebration. Pride was created as a chance to acknowledge the successes and strength of the queer community, especially the Black, Brown, and Trans members frequently under attack. 


It is a chance to celebrate queer contributions! Without the accomplishments of LGBTQ+ scientists like Sally Ride, America’s first female astronaut, or Alan Turing, codebreaker and inventor of modern computing, our STEM fields would be at a great disadvantage. We reflect on the work of figures like James Baldwin and Bayard Rustin who fought for racial justice while simultaneously illuminating the queer experience. Queer artists like Freddie Mercury, frontman of the rock band Queen, and Frida Kahlo, the famed, fantastical painter, have always shaped culture and pushed boundaries in art. We highlight LGBTQ+ icons in popular media like Elton John and Princess Diana who brought mainstream attention to the AIDS epidemic. Finally, we pay gratitude to the activists on Stonewall who launched a turning point in U.S. queer history like Marsha P. Johnson, Zazu Nova, and Jackie Hormona. 


The erasure of queer people only leads to the erasure of cultural and scientific advancements that benefit us all. Whether some like it or not, LGBTQ+ change-makers have left imprints in every crevice, every space, and every field imaginable. Human existence can never be separated from the queer identity. 


“To me, it is a time where we can appreciate things that the LGBTQ+ community has done for the world. It is also a time where people who may not feel as comfortable about speaking up about their sexuality can see some acceptance in that part of themselves,” said San Marcos junior and Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) Secretary, Avery Estrella.


In Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara currently does not have a Pride parade like Los Angeles or San Francisco, but there is most definitely a thriving queer community and plenty of other events to attend this summer!


For example, Pacific Pride Foundation is hosting its annual Pride Week in August. From the 23rd to the 26th, the Foundation is hosting everything from picnics to clack fan design workshops, all leading up to the Saturday Pacific Pride Festival at Chase Palm Park. 


On Campus

In order to bring awareness to the National Day of Silence, and due to the school year being cut off in June, our GSA has already hosted a campus Pride Week in April. The club’s last meeting was on June 5th, However, any students looking to get involved can submit (QR codes on posters around campus) artwork and writing for next year’s zine.

2023-2024 SM GSA (Keira Perkin)

So Royals, keep in mind that along with rallies and games, there are other ways we can take Pride this June!

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About the Contributor
Chelsea Miao
Chelsea Miao, Staff Writer
Chelsea is currently a junior at San Marcos High School. This is her first time taking Journalism and writing for the King’s Page! On campus she enjoys participating in clubs like the Gender and Sexuality Alliance, and is also a student in the AAPLE Academy. After the bell rings, catch her practicing ballet and classical Chinese dance, volunteering at the Sea Center, and on the Youth Making Change board. If you’re really lucky though, you’ll find her in online Clue games and David Attenborough fan clubs.
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