2019 has been chock full of iconic queer moments. Ellen Page said she only ever wanted to play queer roles! Kristen Stewart said she wanted to propose to her girlfriend! A lesbian couple got engaged on “The Bachelor” (and then promptly got un-engaged)! A lesbian astronaut personified “be gay, do crime!” Somebody invented a chair for queer women who can’t sit correctly! There were so many amazing things that happened to, with, and for queer women this year, which makes it extra important that we stop to recognize the things we’re truly thankful for.
This year, I’m thankful for all the typical things, like my friends, family, and Rachel Weiss (just, like, her face in general), but I’m also so incredibly thankful for all the super queer advancements that happened this year. From pop culture to politics, here’s everything queer you should be thankful for this year while shoveling turkey (or tofurky) into your mouth.
WorldPride | Stonewall 50
This year was WorldPride | Stonewall 50, aka the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall Riots on June 28, 1969. On that day, our queer elders decided enough was enough and stepped up to fight for their rights. I am especially thankful for them this year on the 50th anniversary, but I hold my sincere thanks for them with me at all times. I wouldn’t be living life as an openly queer woman without them. We wouldn’t have the modern-day queer rights movement without them — period. We even received an apology from the NYPD this year about their involvement in the riots (though many, many years too late).
Queer Media Representation
Thanks to GLAAD’s “Where We Are on TV” report, we get to see what queer media representation looks like every year, which really helps to track how it’s evolved and what still needs to be done. This year’s report found that 10.2 percent of all series regulars on broadcast television were LGBTQ+ characters — a record-high increase from last year’s 8.8 percent. Queer female characters were seen the most often too, claiming 53 percent of regular and reoccurring characters on broadcast television. How can you not be thankful for better representation and more inclusive programming?
Cara Delevingne and Ashley Benson’s Relationship
I am thankful for the beautiful (and apparently extremely erotic) relationship between queer heart-throb Cara Delevingne and former pretty little liar Ashley Benson for no reason other than its pure chaotic and intimate nature. Remember when they bought that sex bench and had so little shame in it that they just openly carried it into their home? Remember when they made every queer woman spiral into a panic about whether they had gotten engaged? I am so, so thankful for everything about this couple.
The U.S. Women’s Team Winning The World Cup
I mean, hello?! If you didn’t know about this, where have you been? The U.S. National Women’s Soccer Team fought hard for their win at this year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup, and it seems they also fought hard to make it extra gay. For one, team captain Megan Rapinoe. Is any further explanation really needed? The team itself had at least five openly queer members at the time of their win, and we even got to see a lesbian couple get engaged during the celebration. We’re all sports lesbians now!!!
“Killing Eve” Season 2
Okay, listen: Maybe “Killing Eve” isn’t your cup of tea, or maybe you’ve ignored all of our pleas to get you to watch the show. Regardless, this year I am thankful for having received a second season to what I consider one of the gayest shows on TV right now. Hot women! Hot women fighting! Hot women fighting each other!!! Need I say more? You’re either just as grateful as I am for this cat-and-mouse, subliminally horny TV show, or you’re about to go watch it for the first time. Either way, you better be thankful.
Getting To See A Gay Presidential Candidate
Regardless of how you feel about his ideas, you have to give it up to Pete Buttigieg for being the first-ever openly gay presidential candidate. I’m thankful for that alone, but I’m also thankful that Buttigieg has been not only open but vocal about his sexuality and his love for his husband. Plus, his husband obviously has a deep love for him. You can feel it even between all the messy politics.
“The L Word” Reboot
It’s coming, queers, it’s coming! This is not a drill! “The L Word” reboot was announced what seems like forever ago (ahem, it was only January), and it’s finally hitting our screens in December. It’s almost time to reunite with beloved characters Bette, Alice, and Shane while also being introduced to a whole new cast of queers just trying to figure it out. Personally, I’m just thankful that Kate Moennig’s face is everywhere again, but there are plenty of other things to be thankful for about the upcoming reboot.
Watching “The Prom” Somehow Make Broadway Gayer
“The Prom” is a Broadway musical about a group of students fighting for their right to have a prom after it’s canceled over the main character wanting to bring her girlfriend as a date. And wouldn’t you know, the two love interests are happy and share a kiss at the end! Yep, you heard it right: a happy lesbian ending. The show was nominated for seven Grammys. Also, how could we forget the fact that an IRL lesbian couple got engaged during “The Prom” this year? Public and monumental gay love is definitely something to be thankful for.
The Supreme Court Tried LGBTQ+ Workplace Discrimination Cases
There has been some hardship in terms of LGBTQ+-focused court cases (see: the ban on transgender soldiers in the military, a transphobic dad winning custody, Hong Kong rejecting same-sex civil unions), but there is still a major U.S. Supreme Court case in the works that could make a major impact on LGBTQ+ rights. The Court heard three separate cases in October that had to do with workplace discrimination toward queer people. Two had to do with the legality of being fired for your sexual orientation, and one — the first-ever trans-specific case — deals with discrimination over gender identity. No decision has been reached yet, but all eyes are on the Supreme Court. This year, we’re thankful for the hope that comes with the anticipation.
GO Mag’s 100 Women We Love
GO Mag released our 100 Women We Love Class of 2019 this year, which featured so many amazing women doing so many amazing things. From celebs like Amandla Stenberg who are being unapologetically themselves in the public eye to women like Lillian Faderman who are continuing the fight for LGBTQ+ equality, our Class of 2019 is full of women to be thankful for. Plus, our nominations for Class of 2020 are still open! Maybe you’ll see your face (or someone you know) on our list next year.