Why is rainbow flag symbol of LGBT pride?

Gay symbol - rainbow flag.

W e all know that the rainbow flag is a symbol of of lesbiangay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) pride. Do we know its history? 

It all started in 1978 in San Francisco. Gay activist and artist Gilbert Baker designed the rainbow flag in response to a need for a symbol that could be used year after year during Lesbian Freedon Day Parade. Gilbert and his friends, inspired by hippie movement and black civil rights groups, hand-stitched and hand-dyed two huge prototype flags for the parade. The first flag had 8 stripes – each color representing a component of the community: hot pink for sex, red for life, orange for healing, yellow for sun, green for nature, turquoise for art, indigo for harmony and violet for spirit.

Symbol of LGBT pride
Rainbow flag – symbol of LGBT pride


Why has current rainbow flag only 6 colors?

You would maybe not believe it…  In 1979, one year later, Gilbert approached San Francisco Paramount Flag Company to mass produce rainbow flags. But he recieved an answer he didn’t expected –  Due to production constraints pink and turquoise were not commercially available colors. Therefore they were removed and royal blue color was replaced by indigo. The six color version became very quickly popular in USA and later on internationally.

symbol of LGBT pride nowdays
Rainbow flag – symbol of LGBT pride nowdays


It is not only flag anymore

The rainbow flag has inspired a wide variety of related symbols. There are plenty of variations of the flag and other accessories in rainbow colors. You can see people wearing  rainbow badges or rainbow stickers. This way they express they acceptance and openness.

The other way the rainbow symbol is used is on the doors and windows of  the shops or restaurants. This way the owner of the shop says “gay friendly” or “gay is welcomed”. So gay, lesbien or trans do not need to control them self anymore – they can kiss their loved one, hug them or take their hand. They are safe.

rainbow flag - gay friendly place
Symbol for gay friendly places


Would you like to know more about rainbow flag history? Check Wikipedia.

Published in Questions&Answers


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