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President Obama's Weekly Address | New LGBT National Monument

Uploaded 06/26/2016

New LGBT National Monument

On Friday, June 24, President Obama designated the Stonewall National Monument – the first national monument dedicated to telling the story of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community’s struggle for equal rights.




Remarks of President Barack Obama as Delivered

Weekly Address

The White House

June 25, 2016 


Hi everybody.  The story of America is a story of progress.  It’s written by ordinary people who put their shoulders to the wheel of history to make sure that the promise of our founding applies not just to some of us – but to all of us.

Farmers and blacksmiths who chose revolution over tyranny.  Immigrants who crossed oceans and the Rio Grande.  Women who reached for the ballot, and scientists who shot for the moon.  The preachers, and porters, and seamstresses who guided us toward the mountaintop of freedom.

Sometimes, we can mark that progress in special places – hallowed ground where history was written – places like Independence Hall.  Gettysburg.  Seneca Falls.  Kitty Hawk and Cape Canaveral.  The Edmund Pettus Bridge.

One of these special places is the Stonewall Inn.  Back in 1969, as a turbulent decade was winding down, the Stonewall Inn was a popular gathering place for New York City’s LGBT community.  At the time, being gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender was considered obscene, illegal – even a mental illness.

One night, police raided the bar, and started arresting folks.  Raids like these were nothing new – but this time, the patrons had had enough. So they stood up, and spoke out, and over the course of the next several days, they refused to be silenced.  The riots became protests; the protests became a movement; the movement ultimately became an integral part of America.

Over the past seven years, we’ve seen achievements that would have been unimaginable to the folks who, knowingly or not, started the modern LGBT movement at Stonewall.  Today, all Americans are protected by a hate crimes law that includes sexual orientation and gender identity.  “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is history.  Insurance companies can no longer turn you away because of who you are.  Transgender Americans are more visible than ever, helping to make our nation more inclusive and welcoming for all.  And one year ago this weekend, we lit the White House in every color – because in every state in America, you’re now free to marry the person you love.

There’s still work to do.  As we saw two weeks ago in Orlando, the LGBT community still faces real discrimination, real violence, real hate.  So we can’t rest.  We’ve got to keep pushing for equality and acceptance and tolerance.

But the arc of our history is clear – it’s an arc of progress.  And a lot of that progress can be traced back to Stonewall.  So this week, I’m designating the Stonewall National Monument as the newest addition to America’s national parks system.  Stonewall will be our first national monument to tell the story of the struggle for LGBT rights.  I believe our national parks should reflect the full story of our country – the richness and diversity and uniquely American spirit that has always defined us.  That we are stronger together.  That out of many, we are one.  That’s what makes us the greatest nation on earth.  And it’s what we celebrate at Stonewall – for our generation and for all those who come after us.

Thanks everybody, and have a great weekend.


(c)2016 The White House | SCVTV
4 Comments for President Obama's Weekly Address: New LGBT National Monument
  1. Well,that will probably be his only some what memorable legacy the didn’t hurt anyone, cost taxpayers millions, HILLARY didn’t get a donation, from,Bill Clinton didn’t rape anyone at that location, he didn’t go against the constitution to do it, it’s never been called a gun free zone, it won’t be written in history books negativity, and best of all, it didn’t piss us off or hurt Trumps chances of making America safe and great again!!👏👏👏

  2. Sean Cohen Sean Cohen says:

    Really… out of all the problems in the world

    • Don’t be a sore loser, Sean. Sorry you haven’t evolved yet. And nice try, acting as if a president recognizing an important landmark takes away from other duties. Grow up.

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