Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Trans Pride Flag History

File:Transgender Pride flag.svg
One of my Facebook friends asked the question in one of our discussions, "Who came up with the design for the trans pride flag?"   She was referring to the pink, blue and white striped flag that has come into widespread adoption and usage by many trans communities around the world as a symbol of our community

Since it has been almost 15 years since its creation, and I know the person who created it, I thought this would be a great time for a history lesson on the trans pride flag.

That's your cue to have a seat, because TransGriot history class is now in session.   

The transgender pride flag was created in August 1999 by Monica Helms and has five horizontal stripes.  Two stripes are blue ones, two stripes are pink ones and a white center stripe.  

As for their meaning, Helms described it this way in an interview:  "The stripes at the top and bottom are light blue, the traditional color for baby boys. The stripes next to them are pink, the traditional color for baby girls. The stripe in the middle is white, for those who are intersex, transitioning or consider themselves having a neutral or undefined gender. The pattern is such that no matter which way you fly it, it is always correct, signifying us finding correctness in our lives"

trans-flag-castro.jpgThe Helms trans pride flag was first publicly unfurled at a Phoenix, AZ pride parade in 2000.   It is not only the original flag, it is the one that is in widespread usage around the planet. 

When Equality House in Topeka, KS was painted in honor of TDOR last year, it was done in the colors of the Helms trans pride flag

A large version of it was recently unfurled and flown last year for the first time on the large public flagpole in San Francisco's Castro District for Transgender Day of Remembrance on November 19-20.

Trans pride flag variants have popped up in Ontario and in Israel, but the Helms trans pride flag was the first and is increasingly becoming the most widely used one around the world.

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