Gay flag meaning

Gay flag meaning

Gay flag meaning

The Gay flag meaning is not an aware information among gay men —not for the most of us. Why did the gay community choose all these colours? Are they randomly chosen?

There is a story behind our flag.

Previous flags: races and peace

Fortunately our flag has some really nice origins. It comes from a flag uniting all the human races of the world and also from a flag used for world peace.

Back in the 1960’s students and activist fighting for peace, justice and equality needed symbols and created them.

Before the gay flag there was this flag which symbolised all the human races. It had 5 horizontal stripes, one for each race:

  1. Red: Native American Indians
  2. White: Caucasians
  3. Brown: Central Asia and Native Australian
  4. Yellow: East Asian
  5. Black: African and Afro-American

The hippy movement was largely influenced by Allen Ginsberg, who in turn used the rainbow flag used by world peace activists.

He adapted the races flag to hippy movement, and Gilbert Baker said he had in mind all these to create the final version.

The rainbow

The rainbow is a poetic symbol for diversity and completion. The way the colours are put together communicates harmony and a bright explosion of joy.

The term “gay” has also its origins on joy and happiness. Just to fight against all people who thought homosexual men and women should have a sad, depressive and lonely life.

First time it flew

The first time or gay flag flew was in San Francisco, on the Gay Freedom Day Parade on June 25, 1978.

From 8 to 6 stripes

Gilbert Baker designed the first version ever in 1978. Some authors have suggested Baker was inspired in Judy Garland’s “Over the Rainbow” song from the movie “The Wizard of Oz”.

Judy was already a prominent gay icon. A few days after Judy’s death the events of Stonewall happened.

1978 the year of Stonewall. It was an eight colours striped flag, starting with pink on the top, then red, orange, yellow, green, turquoise blue, indigo and violet.

One year later there was no pink fabric available and just the other seven colours survived.

Later that same year 1979 one more color was removed. Indigo and turquoise blue were changed to royal blue.

The reason was the flag was hung vertically from San Francisco light posts. The post itself had a darkening effect over the central stripe, so it was decided to remove the central color, suing an even amount of stripes.

The meaning of colours

The eight original colours stood for these meanings:

  1. Hot pink: Sexuality
  2. Red: Life
  3. Orange: Healing
  4. Yellow: Sunlight
  5. Green: Nature
  6. Turquoise: Magic and Arts
  7. Indigo blue: Serenity and Harmony
  8. Violet: Spirit

Gay flag meaning

There is much more to tell about the gay flag story and I will be adding some content to this post in the future.

Gay flag meaning on Wikipedia

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