Celebrities can be known for many things, whether their iconic roles, wonderful films, or even the occasional scandal.
Othersuse their fame more proactively, becoming household names known for theiradvocacy work and commitment to equality, along with their artistic talent.
With June acting as Pride Month, many are out celebrating, volunteering, and figuring out all possible angles tohelp those we know in the LGBTQ+ community.
Luckily, we have plenty of queer famous people on our side to lend a hand.
This Pride, were taking the time to recognize seven specific peopleconstantly making strides for the LGBTQ+ community.
1. Ellen DeGeneres
No list of queer celebrities advancing the cause of LGBTQ+ rights would be complete without this daytime host with the most.
When Ellencame out in 1997, the scene was completely different for those that identified under the LGBTQ+ umbrella. Because of the stigma that was associated with being gay at the time, Ellen took a huge risk in her career by opening up about who she really is.
Thanks to her public outreach, she changed the game for the LGBTQ+ community in terms of their workin and out of the Hollywood limelight.
Ellen has continued to be an outspoken advocate for the LBGTQ+ community alongside wife, Porta de Rossi, with heradvocacy efforts including (but not limited to): speaking out against anti-LGBT legislationand challenging a presidential candidate on his anti-LBGT stance.
Actress Jane Lynch has even called Ellen apioneer for the LGBT community,and its clearshes not wrong about that.
2. Miley Cyrus
Cyrusrecently launched herHappy Hippie Foundation, a nonprofit group dedicated to helping homeless and LGBT youth. Shes also kicked off#InstaPride, aninitiative with Instagram that encourages people to be outspoken in sharing theirstories as members of the transgender community.
If that wasnt enough, Miley went and got anequal sign tattooed on her ring finger,representing her support of gay marriage and marriage equality as a whole.
I believe every American should be allowed the same rights and civil liberties, Miley wrote in an essay for Magazine. Without legalized same-sex marriage, most of the time you cannot share the same health benefits, you are not considered next of kin and you are not granted the same securities as a heterosexual couple. How is this different than having someone sit in the back of the bus because of their skin color?
At only 24-years old, its clear we need more supporters like Miley.
3. Ellen Page
Actress Ellen Page, known for her roles inand ,came out publicly during a speech at the Human Rights Campaign Time to Thrive conference in 2014.
In that speech, the actress said she felt a personal obligation and social responsibility to come out and advocate.
Over the past several years, Ellen has continued her advocacy efforts, including working on projects that center on LGBTQ+ characters. She has also acted as the host of,a series that challenges views on LGBTQ+ communities throughout the world.
Page is an important, visible LGBTQ+ celebrity, and her advocacy efforts have continuedto make an impact over the last few years.
4. Laverne Cox
Laverne Cox got her claim to famefor her role as Sophia Burset on Netflixs hit series,.
Since then, Laverne, who is considered the first transgender woman of color to have such an impactfulrole on mainstream television, has been a committed advocate for LGBTQ+ rights.
She produced a documentary calledFree CeCe, telling thestory of a transwoman sentenced to almost three and a half years in jail for defending herself against an attack.
Laverne also advocated for better data collection of LBGTQ+ individuals with Congress. Better data collection, according to Laverne, means a lower chance of discriminatory bills like the anti-transgender bathroom laws passing.
According to the actress, with more actual data about trans people, there will be less misinformation and hopefully, less hate.
5. George Takei
Although previous generations may know Georgefrom his infamous role, many millennials now recognize him as thefamous LGBTQ+ advocate across social media.
He regularly shares his opinions onways theLGBTQ+ community can lead change.
In fact, he even led atour focused on the process ofcoming out, naming itEquality Trek. On the tour, he spoke about being a gay Japanese-American and what life was like for him growing up. He waslater honored with the Upstander Award from the Human Rights Campaign for his commitment to LBGTQ+ activism.
George has embraced his identity as a gay man, saying its a natural part of who [I] am.He continues encouraging others to do the same.
6. Lady Gaga
Lady Gaga regularly advocates for LGBTQ+ rights through multiple outlets, includingher work as a musician.
Identifying as bisexual, the singer-songwritermade a chart-topping statement with her 2011 hit, Born This Way,a powerful track about loving who youare, no matter what the opinions of others may be.
Her nonprofit group, the Born This Way Foundation, has focused on the fight against bullying, directed at the nations youth with a strong lean towards LGBTQ+ youngsters.
Gaga herself has always taken multiple opportunities to speak out in favor of equality:in interviews, while accepting awards, and even through video messages encouraging others to get out and vote for equal rights.
Shes even made big statements by walking away from a lucrative sales deal because of a companys refusal to support LGBTQ+ charities.
Gaga hascontinued to act as a huge proponent of LGBTQ+ rights, always encouraging fans and followers to be exactly who they were born to be.
Shes way more than just your average pop sensation.
7. Neil Patrick Harris
Neil Patrick Harris is a big supporter of multiple LGBTQ+ organizations, including The Trevor Project and Live Out Loud.
Hes been extremely vocal about his place as a gay actor on television, and strives for moreLGBTQ+ inclusiveness in Hollywood.
Neil also penned a memoir,, focusing on his life andhow he learned to accept who he was.
After a long internal journey, you now embrace being gay, recognizing it as a wonderful and integrally important component part of the totality that is you, he said.
Though Pride is a time to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community and discuss the issues they face, Neil and these other celebrities are advocating for equality year-round.
We should applaud them for that.
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