This week’s Boston Pride announced it will be honoring Gilbert Baker, during the flag ceremony at City Hall Plaza on Friday.Baker is the mastermind behind the rainbow flag that’s become synonymous with the LGBT rights movement. He passed away earlier this year, and the community decided to honor him for his great work.
Honoring Gilbert Baker
Boston Pride decided to have such a nice gesture, indeed. During its flag-raising ceremony at City Hall Plaza, members of the Boston Pride paid tribute to Baker for his contribution to LGBTQ people.The ceremony date, June 2, also marked Gilbert Baker’s birthday, which made the occasion even more special.
The announcement as a way to say goodbye and thank the gay rights who died last March. Baker’s rainbow design has become a unifying symbol around the world.The artist was also honored with a Google Doodle, which spread some wisdom on the man who delivered an undeniable symbol of love, respect, and unity.
Baker was born in Chanute, Kansas in 1951. After a stint in the Army, he settled in San Francisco, which had transformed into a community that endorsed civil rights for women and other under-represented segments of society.
Baker’s most enduring contribution
The iconic rainbow flag was born thanks to Baker’s friends. They asked him to create something that could be identified with the rising number of men who were coming out in San Francisco and elsewhere. Community members asked for a symbol for protests and marches This would help them communicate the idea of a unified stand. Harvey Milk himself, prominent gay rights advocate, ask Baker to come with the creation of the original emblem.
So, Baker began to work. Earlier banners had used a pink triangle, a reclaiming of the same symbol used by Nazis to identify gay men in concentration camps during World War II.Baker left that aside and emerged with a rainbow flag charged with meaning.At first, it had eight stripes, each one of a different color and meaning. Orange indicated healing; yellow meant sunlight; violet meant spirit. However, the number of stripes was reduced to six because the demand for the flag grew after Milk’s assassination and Baker couldn’t keep up.
“What the rainbow has given our people is a thing that connects us,” he once said. “I can go to another country, and if I see a rainbow flag, I feel like that’s someone who is a kindred spirit or [that it’s] a safe place to go. It’s sort of a language, and it’s also proclaiming power.”