BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) – There are only a handful of Pride events in Bakersfield this June but a community member says even with a few Pride events, the LGBTQ community can’t be stopped.
Fatima Agredano, the founder of the social media group Bakersfield Gays said, “We’ve been silenced for so long.” The social media group is a growing resource for events, news and more in the LGBTQ community.
“I’m proud of who I am and I think that people get mad at the fact that we’re prideful but it’s finally accepting who we are, it’s finally not being shut in the closet, it’s finally not being unrepresented,” Agredano said.
This year marks 54 years since the Stonewall Inn riots, a series of protests that served as a catalyst for the gay rights movement and led to June being declared Pride Month.
But Agredano claims in Bakersfield it still is a fight.
“There’s a lot of violence here in Bakersfield unfortunately, and especially towards us, towards our group of people, so I think people are scared. I mean you could wear something as colorful as this or wear a pride flag and people will throw things at you or yell things at you,” Agredano said.
So far in Bakersfield there has been a Pride Fair and an exhibit at the Bakersfield Museum of Art.
Agredano hopes as more events come the city will make an effort to celebrate the resilience and perseverance of the LGBTQ community.
“They just want a space like you do, they just want to be able to be themselves in a community where everyone can except them, where they won’t be judged, they won’t be harmed, we just all want to be respected,” Agredano said.
Events happening this month include the “Faces of Pride” exhibit at Bakersfield Museum of Art running through July 1 and the Shine Your Light Oleander Pride Event at Beale Park on June 24.