Remarks by the First Lady at a Pride Celebration

June 10, 2023

THE FIRST LADY: Welcome to the White House. And happy Pride. (Applause.)

The Pride Celebration is always one of the most exciting events at the White House. But this year, we wanted to do something a little different than before — not just a reception that recognizes the leaders and the activists of this movement, but an all-American picnic here on the South Lawn — (applause) — celebrating you, America's LGBTQ families. (Applause.)

We're grateful to the Gill Foundation who helped make today possible, as well as all of those organizations who worked to bring hundreds of families together from across our country.

It's such an honor to be here with all of you and to see so many of our friends. And as I look around at this crowd, I re- — I'm reminded that you're not just leaders and icons. You're parents trying to figure out what to make for tonight's dinner. (Applause.) You're kids who are hoping to spend every minute in the pool this summer. (Laughter.) And you're friends who drop off meals when someone is sick.

All of us wants what everyone else wants: The chance to be who we are and love who we love and make a good life for our families. (Applause.) And all of us deserve that.

We know that this year's Pride is caught between the push and pull of progress. Outside the gates of this house are those who want to drag our country backwards —


THE FIRST LADY: — and so many battles yet to be brave.

But today, we're not here to be strong. We're not here to be courageous, even though, for so many of you, just coming to this event is an act of bravery.

Today, we are here to find joy. (Applause.) We want our kids just to be kids, running around and, hey, eating too much sugar; to laugh with the friends that we wish we saw more often; to find solace in the arms of people who see us for who we are; to celebrate the beauty and the resilience of this community.

The author — you know I'm an English teacher; you had to get a little bit — (applause) — Rita Mae Brown once wrote, "Every day you're alive and someone loves you is a miracle." (Applause.)

Today, we say loud and clear that you belong, that you are beautiful, that you are loved. (Applause.)

That's the miracle that carry us — carries us through the darkest times, that gives us hope for the future that we all want, that strengthen us for the fights ahead.

And when you leave here to go back to the place that needs so much change, take that miracle with you. Let it remind you that you don't have to face these battles alone.

You are never alone, and you are loved.

Thank you for celebrating with us today. (Applause.)

And now, please welcome Scarlet Harvey, a health and fitness coach from Texas, who is here with her wife, Krystle, and their three kids. Thank you. (Applause.)

MS. SCARLET HARVEY: Hello. And happy Pride. (Applause.)

We are the Harvey family. And we're thrilled to be here at the White House for this incredible celebration of joy with the LGBTQ+ community and fam- — friends from across the country.

We live in Houston, Texas, with our three kids: twelve-year-old Josselin —

AUDIENCE MEMBER: Woo! Josselin! (Laughter.)

MS. SCARLET HARVEY: — (laughs) — four-year-old Liam, who couldn't join us today; and Krystopher, who will be one later this year on Pride — (applause) — this week.

My wife, Krystle, is an elementary physical education teacher, and I am a health and fitness coach. (Applause.)

Growing up in Texas and knowing I was part of the LGBTQ+ community, I had to hide my true self. I never knew if I'd be able to marry the person I love or have kids. But look at where I am today: together with my wife and kids at the White House. (Applause.) And I am so damn proud. (Applause.)

We're a blended family living out and proud to show our community, our state, and our country that love makes a family. (Applause.)

As you can imagine, being out in Texas can be especially tough. In many areas of Texas, we don't see families like ours, and many times we get looks and whispers behind our backs. But we don't let it discourage us from being us. We don't let negativity and ignorance win.

We hope being an out and visible two-mom family will help others realize that while we may look different — (applause) — that we may look different than their family, there's so much we have in common.

Every week, we try to balance the kids' school, basketball practice, and play dates; cheering them on their sport games; and trying to instill confidence in them to be their best self. After all, isn't that what we're all trying to teach our kids? (Applause.)

We teach our children that everyone is unique and we must not only accept their uniqueness, but embrace it and celebrate it. We show our children the love and what love looks like. We practice kindness and respect to all. We try to be examples not only for our kids, but to anyone else's and anyone who sees us.

We always be proud of our family and proud of our love. (Applause.)

And we're also proud that we have the President who gets it and who values us — (applause) — and knows that love makes a family. (Applause.)

It's an honor to introduce a true ally of the LGBTQ+ community, the 46th President of the United States, Joe Biden. (Applause.)

[APP Note: The president's remarks which followed can be founf here:]

Jill Biden, Remarks by the First Lady at a Pride Celebration Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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