June marks the 42nd anniversary of the Stonewall riots in New York City, when the gay rights movement began in the United States.

Honolulu Pride will celebrate the occasion with a parade on Saturday through Waikiki.

But there’s a new twist to Gay Pride Month in Hawaii.

This week, Gov. Neil Abercrombie issued a proclamation declaring that June 2011 is officially “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Questioning Pride Month.”


The first four words in the title — lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender — are familiar to most people. Same goes for the acronym LGBT (sometimes GLBT).

But what’s meant by “queer,” “intersex” and “questioning”?

Michael Golojuch, Jr., chairman of Honolulu Pride, which requested the proclamation from the governor, explained that “queer” is for people who reject the labels of gay and lesbian.

“They don’t like being in that box, so queer can mean anything,” he said.

“Intersex,” Golojuch explained, is the “politically correct and medically accurate term for someone previously known as a hermaphrodite — which is a derogatory term — that referred to someone born with both sexes or ambiguous genitalia.”

“Questioning,” meanwhile, refers to someone “who hasn’t figured things out or decided yet,” he says.

Honolulu Pride, by the way, dropped the “LGBT” from its name this year.

“It can be a mouthful, and we want to be as inclusive as possible and not alienate anybody,” said Golojuch. “Some may still refer to Honolulu Gay Pride, but we are fine with that, too.”

No Resistance from Gov

Golojuch, who helped Abercrombie with his campaign, said he submitted the request for a proclamation — “a standard written procedure.”

The administration made little change to the text, which concludes with this line:

THEREFORE, I, NEIL ABERCROMBIE, Governor, and I, BRIAN SCHATZ, Lieutenant Governor of the State of Hawaii, do herby proclaim June, 2011 as “LESBIAN, GAY, BISEXUAL, TRANSGENDER, QUEER, INTERSEX, QUESTIONING PRIDE MONTH” in Hawaii and urge the people of the Aloha State to join in the celebrations and recognize the accomplishments that the Honolulu Pride and Hawaii’s Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Questioning community and their Allies have achieved, and congratulate the Honolulu Pride on the celebration of its 21st anniversary.”

The governor is scheduled to deliver remarks at the Gay Pride Parade and Festival at Kapiolani Bandstand Saturday afternoon.

Golojuch said the Lingle administration did not respond to Honolulu Pride’s request for a proclamation last year, while former Gov. Ben Cayetano issued what Golojuch described as a “generic” pride proclamations that didn’t include the word “gay,” except on one occasion.

About the Author