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Pride festival themed ‘Sacredness before Stonewall’

Pride festival themed ‘Sacredness before Stonewall’


The Navajo Nation is home to the largest Pride celebration in Indian Country. This year’s Diné Pride theme is “Honoring Sacredness before Stonewall.”

“Our pride is solely focused on the sacredness of Native and two-spirit identity before Stonewall,” Alray Nelson, one of the founders of Diné Pride, said.

The event is part of the annual lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer Pride celebrations that happen every June across the United States. It will be held June 28 to 29 in Window Rock.

“Because of Western encroachment, because of colonialism, it really blurred the traditional knowledge about our LGBTQ relatives,” Nelson said. “Western teachings taught in boarding schools impacted a generation of Navajo people that now do not see our community as valid, as human or as sacred.”

This is why the event is refocusing on how two-spirit relatives were treated and fit into the Navajo community.

“So, our pride is to reaffirm, reclaim that knowledge and history that at one point in time before Western encroachment, before white people coming onto our land, before Christianity, our people were honored and recognized and revered,” Nelson said.

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About The Author

Pauly Denetclaw

Pauly Denetclaw is Meadow People born for Towering House People. She was raised in Manuelito and Naschitti, New Mexico. She was the co-recipient of the Native American Journalist Association's 2016 Richard LaCourse Award for Investigative Reporting. Denetclaw is currently finishing her degree in multimedia journalism from the University of New Mexico - Main. Denetclaw covers a range of topics including genetic research, education, health, social justice issues and small businesses. She loves coffee, writing and being with her family. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram. Her handle is @pdineclah