Pride has arrived on Sesame Street.
The iconic PBS children's show celebrated June's month-long LGBTQ+ celebration with a message of acceptance posted to its social media channels Thursday — along with an image of a rainbow display of Muppets holding hands.
"On our street, we accept all, we love all, and we respect all. Happy #PrideMonth!" it wrote.
The message was mostly met with positive responses on Facebook, where it was shared nearly 40,000 times and loved over 18,000 times as of this article's publishing. "You just brought tears to my 41-year-old eyes. If you had told me when I was a kid… Thank you. From the bottom of my heart," commented Chris Alwell.
Others pointed out how the show still lacks LGBTQ+ representation and "this cute post does nothing to address this."
"My daughter is 6. The fact is she will not see a family like hers in the show before she outgrows it," wrote Colleen Jameson. "That may be just a 'waiting period' for the show- but it is her childhood and it will never happen. So many of the other kids get to see families like theirs represented. Her friends at school who don’t think a kid 'can have 2 mommies' don’t see it either."
In fact, Sesame Workshop — the nonprofit organization that produces Sesame Street — squandered a golden opportunity for queer representation by issuing a denial in 2018 that muppets Bert and Ernie are a "loving couple" after former Sesame Street writer Mark Saltzman declared it.
"As we have always said, Bert and Ernie are best friends,” the organization wrote on Twitter at the time. “They were created to teach preschoolers that people can be good friends with those who are very different from themselves.”
Regardless, many in the LGBTQ+ community continue to consider the pair of longterm male roommates as queer icons. Sesame Street, at least, took one more step to coming out this Pride, especially after Lil Nas X sang a duet with Elmo.