Okay, okay, by now you all should have seen our blog post promoting our Friend of Dorothy release but do you know where the name came from?
Some of you may have been asked or have asked someone else- Are you a friend of Dorothy? For those of you who dont know this is an LGBTQ2S+ slang, used to ask others if they identify as queer without outing themselves or others publicly.
But wait, why Dorothy?
Great Question! Any fan of Judy Garland knows that she is a gay ICON 🌟 and was a huge supporter of the LGBTQ2S+ community for her whole life. But the truth is- we chose her. 🤫 Judy Garland was no stranger to personal struggle, she lived a life of suffering and trauma which the community recognized early on and identified with. Garland was surrounded by the community her whole life; her father was known to be a gay man and her second husband also lived most of his life identifying as gay, but societal pressure pushed him back into the closet when he moved from NY to LA. And lastly, Judy's fourth husband also came out as gay. Despite being one of the first celebrities to live a life of divorce, drinking, drugs, tragedy and childhood PTSD, she still took her life into her own hands and never pretended to be anything she wasn't. The community praised her courage and bravery and proudly started to identify as being 'a friend of Dorothy.'
In the book Wizard of Oz, Dorothy's character is asked "You have some queer friends, Dorothy", and she replies, "The queerness doesn't matter, so long as they're friends." Lest we forgot Ozma, the first transgender character in modern literature! Lastly, there is Garland's performance of 'Somewhere over the rainbow.' 🌈 Rumored to have contributed to Gilbert Baker's design of the rainbow for the pride flag. 🏳️🌈
Before the Wizard of Oz came along the world knew Dorothy Parker, a notorious defender of human and civil rights who's social circles included many openly gay men. During prohibition Parker would host fancy garden parties inviting mostly gay men and they used the phrase as a passcode.
No matter which story you learned first or how you identify, I think that we owe a lot to the Dorothy's in our lives. Let's be honest, being a lesbian myself, there are many times in my life that I wish I could click my heels and disappear into a magical technicolor world. As a little girl I always loved this movie, with a particular admiration for Judy Garland's character, her bright doe eyes and sense of adventure (reflectively this makes sense haha) but now it means so much more to me. We need the Dorothy's in our life to speak up for us, protect us and advocate for a brighter future.
So, this June add it to your Pride watch list, or read list. Order some awesome food, curl up in a blanket and hold your chosen family close. Just know that we're all here for each other. I may not know you personally, and I may never meet you but I am here for you. Through our shared hardships our history will always be the brightest and we will prevail.
Happy Pride & all my love;
❤️ 🧡 💛 💚 💙 💜 🖤 🤍 🤎
If you want to read more about the origins of the phrase check this link to the wikipedia page.