Monday, October 11th is the 33rd anniversary of National Coming Out Day. It was 34 years ago that over 200,000 gay men, lesbians, bisexuals, transgender people, and straight allies marched on Washington to demand equal civil rights and urge the passage of protective civil rights legislation.

According to the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), “when people know someone who is LGBTQ+, they are far more likely to support equality under the law. Beyond that, our stories can be powerful to each other.” This year the theme of the day is BORN TO SHINE! 

People magazine describes National Coming Out Day as, “an annual celebration with a goal of shining light on individuals within the LGBTQ+ community and their decisions to share their gender identities and sexual orientation with the public.” It is also a day “to support those who choose to keep their identity a secret, or perhaps encourage someone to come out who’s been thinking about it.” Unfortunately, not everyone has the luxury of coming out to fanfare. We all don’t get cheers and hugs from family and friends.   

The first National Coming Out Day was created as a day to remind queer people of the power we have coming out. The power we have is much needed in these times. As much progress as we have made in the past 30 years – and boy have we moved mountains! – there is still much that needs to be done. The war for Equality is far from over. Anti-LGBTQ legislation is being created by the homophobic Republican party on a daily basis. Our Transgender brothers and sisters are fighting for their very existence. COMING OUT MATTERS. Your voice is important, it needs to be heard and counted!


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