Created in 1978, the Rainbow Pride Flag by Gilbert Baker has been a symbol of the whole LGBT+ community and those within it for over 45 years.
In 1978, when I thought of creating a flag for the gay movement (at Harvey Milk’s request) there was no other international symbol for us than the pink triangle, which the Nazis used to identify homosexuals in concentration camps. Even though the pink triangle was and still is a powerful symbol, it was very much forced upon us. I almost instantly thought of using the rainbow. To me, it was the only thing that could really express our diversity, beauty and our joy. I was astounded nobody had thought of making a rainbow flag before because it seemed like such an obvious symbol for us. A true flag is not something you can really design.
“A true flag is torn from the soul of the people. A flag is something that everyone owns and that’s why they work. The rainbow flag is like other flags in that sense, it belongs to the people.” – Gilbert Baker
On June 9, 2016, Gilbert attained a high point in his life of activism. He was invited to the White House for a reception to commemorate LGBT Pride Month. There, he presented President Barak Obama with a hand-dyed, cotton Rainbow Flag..
On March 31, 2017, Gilbert Baker passed away in his sleep at home. At the time, he had been planning a trip back to his childhood home in Parsons, Kansas. There, he was to be honored at the first annual Gilbert Baker Film Festival at Labette Community College.
Gilbert Baker’s Rainbow Flag resides in the public domain.
You can learn more about Baker’s fascinating life by CLICKING HERE.
REMEMBER: Any other version of Baker’s original design is an insult not only to Gilbert Baker and his memory but also an insult to the LGBT community itself.