“I am honored to join you to celebrate the fundamental freedoms that all human beings deserve – no matter who they are or whom they love,” says US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton as various American and European cities celebrate their Pride festivals.
For several years now, June has been the traditional home of LGBTI Pride celebrations, a fact which President Obama also takes seriously.
Among the celebrations, Pride is a chance to reflect on how far many parts of the world have come with gay equality, but also remind ourselves of how far many other places still have to go. Our brothers and sisters in some countries face a tortuous existence, says Clinton.
“In the United States and around the world, progress is being made,” she notes. “The tireless advocacy of generations is bending the arc of history. Barriers are being torn down, discriminatory laws repealed, and millions are now able to live more freely and participate in the future of their communities and countries.
“But there is still much more to be done. Gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender men and women continue to be persecuted and attacked. They are arrested, beaten, terrorized, and even executed.
“We will not rest until full and equal rights are a reality for everyone. History proves that the march toward equality and justice will overcome barriers of intolerance and discrimination. But it requires a concerted effort from all of us. No matter how long the road ahead, I’m confident that we will travel it successfully together.”
Hear Hillary Clinton’s Pride Month speech in full below.