12 Millennials On Why Pride Is So Important This Year

NYC Pride is hands down a beautiful celebration of love, identity, and expression — but it's hard to celebrate and not think about the many ways LGBTQ rights are still being threatened in America right now. Violence against LGBTQ people is up in the last year, workplace discrimination is still alive and real, and six months into the new administration we are starting to see vital protections be rescinded. Yes, it's completely understandable to feel discouraged, but now more than ever it's time to make voices heard — and Pride is an important opportunity to do just that.

On Saturday night, revelers arrived at The DL in New York City to kick off Pride weekend with Teaze, NYC Pride’s official event featuring celebrity guest DJs, rooftop views, and amazing company. The vibe was overwhelmingly upbeat and celebratory, but it was also a chance for people to get real about what Pride means to them this year — and why it is so crucial to show up.

NYC Pride has always been a time to march, rally, and let people tell their stories. I asked Millennials at Teaze to explain why Pride this year is so important, and here's exactly what they had to say.

Maya, 26

"In an age where DJT threatens your right to exist, what better resistance than to be aggressively gay?"

Karla, 33

"Because women's rights are human rights."

Lindsay, 27 & Veni, 24

"Because I married a gay immigrant."

Christine, 21

"Queer pride matters because queer dreams matter."

Malaika, 21

"Visibility of queer people of color matters for future generations."

Eleese, 27 & Nicole, 28

"Pride is important because #blacklivesmatter."

Amanda, 24

"Pride 2017 is important because our voices need to be heard loud."

Veronica, 25

"I worked for the Hillary campaign that stood for inclusion; this Pride our president doesn't even recognize the holiday and what it is to be LGBTQ in the United States."

Kylah, 22 & Tiana, 25

"We're here, we're queer, so just grab a beer and kiss someone."

There are so many reasons to show up for Pride this year, and every year — and each and every one of them is important.