The unicorn has often come up as the animal representing the LGBT+ community. Why is this and what`s the meaning behind it, you ask? Perhaps because the unicorn is often associated with rainbows?
Or is there a deeper reason for this love for our favorite horned beast? For the hidden nature of this forest-dwelling animal overlaps with how the LGBT+ community sees itself.
Rainbows and Unicorns
The pride flag, a rainbow of diversity, is the perfect representation for the colorful LGBT+ community. It was designed by a San Francisco artist Gilbert Baker. These days the flag can be seen at pride parades all over the world, being flown proud and loud. However, it’s not limited in its meaning. The rainbow can also be used as a flag of peace!
Originally, the flag had eight colors, each with its own meaning. The reason why we’re down to six stripes today is a lot less wild than you probably speculated it to be. There just wasn’t enough fabric! Yeah, Baker’s designed hot-pink stripe was simply too hard to reproduce. Shame, right? I think it looked amazing with the pink.
And the best animal to strut next to the rainbow? The unicorn, of course! Especially considering that in 2018 there was a real unicorn boom within the community. Pride flags were marketed along with unicorn horns that made their way to Pride Parades across the world. Single-horned headbands were all the rage!
But you know, it isn’t just the rainbows that connect the LGBT+ community and unicorns. After all, they have always been pulled towards the mythical creatures of the world. Hence there must surely be something behind that attraction towards the unknown. Let’s see if we can’t get to the bottom of this.
Creature of Change for LGBT Community
It’s wise to bring up the ever-changing nature of the unicorn. Did you know that the creature started off being described as having the feet of an elephant and the body of a lion? This is seen in many Latin books that had strived to describe the mythological. Of course, the old description doesn’t have a lot to do with modern depictions of the unicorn.
But even today they appear in a crazy variety of colors and styles – from pink to black, some with lithe bodies and some with muscular physiques, and some even with wings (although those are called Alicorns). The drawings people do of all these different unicorns, gosh! I could scroll through them for hours!
This fluidity between forms resonates with a lot of the LGBT+ community who don’t conform to the gender binary. While it might have been normalized to think of gender as either male or female, this is not true for all. Like the unicorn’s changing form, there are many gender identities that fall under the LGBT+ banner.
Another version of why the unicorn resonates with the LGBT+ community is that it started out as a symbol of masculinity. The unicorn adorned royal heraldic symbols under which men rode into battles and entered glorious tournaments.
However, through the ages, the creature has been adapted into something more feminine. Let’s look at Peter S. Beagle’s “The Last Unicorn”, in which the unicorn is forced to take a human guise. For this, they choose the form of a beautiful young woman. You can watch the original scene from the animation in the video below.
Then again, it is also stated in that book, as well as many others, that the unicorn has no gender.
This is a break away from the traditional gender-binary. Such non-conformity and change resonate with a large part of the LGBT+ community. However, the fact that this break can be found in books as old as “The Last Unicorn” is also a meaningful sign. A sign that the terms coined now by the LGBT+ had always existed.
The LGBT+ Feeling as Mythical as the Unicorn
The mythical status of the unicorn is also a large part of why the LGBT community connects with them. Especially bisexual people, who receive erasure from both outside and inside the community. They take on the symbol of the unicorn almost in jest. They also feel like they sometimes don’t exist to the outside world. In fact, now that I think about it, this is also why the LGBT+ love all kinds of mermaids and selkies as well!
Most importantly, the mysterious and hidden nature of the unicorn reflects the sense of otherness LGBT+ folks feel. Facing the challenge of walking the tightrope between their identities and societal norms. The ever-changing and elusive unicorn is a perfect symbol for these inner struggles.
While they are discriminated against, the unicorn is an out for them. It’s a representation of dreams and fantasy that has to stay elusive and hidden. Or else it be hunted. For aren’t there many who would do anything for the healing powers of the unicorn’s horn?
Unicorn LGBT T-Shirt
Unicorns play such an important role in LGBT Community, that wearing a T-shirt with Unicorn LGBT message on it, has become a thing to wear proudly, with pride. Strong and brave as unicorns themselves. We found our favorite options for females tees and males to show their unicorn status.
This beautiful creature is a perfect emblem to represent the LGBT+ community. Hidden, yet ever-present in our cultures – the unicorn’s many forms and interpretations are a magnet that draws the community near.
The people who want to change the world into a better, more tolerating place. Perhaps soon, the unicorn can change again. This time into a creature that can thrive without having to hide in the dense forests anymore.