As we celebrate another year of Pride Month, we reflect on those who paved the way for the LGBTQIA+ community, who fought and died to have their rights. One of the most prominent figures in the LGBTQIA+ community was Marsha P. Johnson. Johnson was known to fight for gay and transgender rights from the 1960s and 1970s in New York City. As she was one of the most memorable figures in the movement, her personality brought joy and love throughout the community.
Johnson was an activist and mother figure for her community. Organizations such as Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries (STAR), where they would help the youth who experience homelessness and supporting people of color, the Stonewall Riots, and the ACT UP organization, an activist group to put a stop to the HIV/AIDS pandemic. As she continued to reach out to young people of the LGBTQIA+ community. Johnson partnering with other LGBTQIA+ representatives such as Sylvia Rivera, was a force to be reckoned with. However, on July 6,1992, her presence in the community would be taken too soon.
On July 6, 1992, at the age of 46, Johnson's body was found in the Hudson River. The New York Police Department ruled it as a suicide by drowning, but the community had other theories and opinions. Some of her fellow drag queens never saw Johnson in a depressive state. However, it was always mentioned by her fellow peers that the mafia was after her. As others suspected that she was killed by a hate group, some even suspected that someone from the NYPD killed her, or had her killed, and covered it up, because she was just a transvestite. Yet, the difference she made in New York in the 60s and 70s, is the same impact that's been made in our generation.
Throughout this time in Pride Month, when we hear the name Marsha P. Johnson, words such as powerful, beautiful, and outspoken are mentioned. Johnson will always be remembered as the woman who wanted to reach out to as many members of LGBTQIA+ community, and be a mother to the motherless. Declaring the need to have gay rights and transgender rights. Even though she's gone physically, she will always be known as the woman who pays no mind to hate.
Source: ABC News
Marsha P. Johnson will always be the drag queen who built New York, and she remains to be one of the most prominent figures in LGBTQIA+ community.
As we reflect on Pride Month once again, we will always remember to love who we love without boundaries, but we also remember the leaders in the community such as Marsha P Johnson, never gave up their fight for gay and transgender rights. As that fight is passed a long to this generation, using their words of wisdom and actions can make a difference in the LGBTQIA+ community.