posted on Jun, 23 2004 @ 11:14 PM
Use of the rainbow flag by the gay community began in 1978 when it first appeared in the San Francisco Gay and Lesbian Freedom Day Parade. Borrowing
symbolism from the hippie movement and black civil rights groups, San Francisco artist Gilbert Baker designed the rainbow flag in response to a need
for a symbol that could be used year after year. Baker and thirty volunteers hand-stitched and hand-dyed two huge prototype flags for the parade.
The flags had eight stripes, each color representing a component of the community:
1. Hot Pink for Sex
2. Red for Life
3. Orange for Healing
4. Yellow for Sun
5. Green for Nature
6. Turquoise for Art
7. Indigo for Harmony
8. Violet for Spirit.
The next year Baker approached San Francisco Paramount Flag Company to mass-produce rainbow flags for the 1979 parade. Due to production constraints
the hot pink and turquoise were removed and blue replaced the indigo.
This six-color version spread from San Francisco to other cities, and soon became the widely-known symbol of gay pride and diversity it is today