Biden Celebrates LGBTQ+ Community On National Coming Out Day: ‘Know That You Are Loved For Who You Are’
“My Administration will always have your back, and we will continue fighting for the full measure of equality, dignity, and respect you deserve,” the president said.
October 11, 2021 at 9:08 pm
On National Coming Out Day, President Joe Biden condemned homophobia in a statement shared by the White House.
The statement, shared Monday morning, rallied behind the LGBTQ+ community and praised legislatures outlawing discriminatory practices across the country, the Independent reports.
"Today and every day, I want every member of the LGBTQ+ community to know that you are loved and accepted just the way you are — regardless of whether or not you’ve come out,” Biden said.
“To LGBTQ+ people across the country, and especially those who are contemplating coming out: know that you are loved for who you are, you are admired for your courage, and you will have a community — and a nation — to welcome you,” he added. “My Administration will always have your back, and we will continue fighting for the full measure of equality, dignity, and respect you deserve.”
The nationally recognized holiday was first celebrated in 1988. The awareness day aligned with the one-year anniversary of the 1987 National March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights, and was established by Robert Eichberg and Jean O'Leary.
“Most people think they don’t know anyone gay or lesbian, and in fact, everybody does. It is imperative that we come out and let people know who we are and disabuse them of their fears and stereotypes,” Eichberg said in 1993.
The day has since been observed on Oct. 11 and aims to uplift the community.
While on the campaign trail, Biden openly expressed his diligence to tackle legislature in support of the community within the first 100 days of his term as president.
Biden, who has taken a different tone in his support of the LGBTQ+ community when compared to former President Donald Trump, has also appointed several members of the LBGTQ+ community to his administration.
Additionally, on the 10th anniversary of the repeal of "don't ask, don't tell," Biden said the country should honor LGBTQ+ service members discharged due to the discriminatory act, NBC News reports.
The policy banned members of the LGBTQ+ community from publicly disclosing their sexuality. Under the policy, roughly 13,000 service members were discharged. The repeal was signed into effect by former President Barack Obama.
In February, the House of Representatives also passed an Equality Act that seeks to ban discrimination against people for their sexual orientation and gender identity, the Independent reports.
Despite the country's strides, the president noted that the country still has a way to go in embracing all people, CNN reports.
"Bullying and harassment — particularly of young transgender Americans and LGBTQ+ people of color — still abounds, diminishing our national character. We must continue to stand together against these acts of hate, and stand up to protect the rights, opportunities, physical safety, and mental health of LGBTQ+ people everywhere," he said.
"From defeating discriminatory bills to passing the Equality Act, we have more work to do to ensure that every American can live free of fear, harassment, and discrimination because of who they are or whom they love," Biden added.
The holiday is also celebrated across the seas in Ireland, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the U.K.