A Pride event designed for children and families took an ugly turn in Rancho Cordova Saturday. Protesters showed up shortly after family festivities got underway at the Sacramento Children’s Museum. Drag princess Suzette Veneti says she wasn’t surprised, she was disappointed and wanted answers. One sign read: “Groomers are not welcome in California.” Another read: “Protect white children.” “You’re standing there with a megaphone and signs, you’re scaring kids,” Veneti said. “They could’ve protested at Pride. They could protest anywhere they want, but to pick a children’s museum with children, like, this is for kids.” “There were a lot of young volunteers just in tears, because they had never experienced something like this,” said Andrew Gibout with the Sacramento Gay Men’s Chorus.
In the months leading up to June 11th, antifascists in and surrounding Coeur d’Alene recognized the threat that queer folks were facing from both local and faraway fascists. Different collectives outside Coeur d’Alene got together to assess the risks of traveling to north Idaho to support and defend Pride and to establish goals for the day. Antifascist crews worked hard brainstorming and predicting potential outcomes, taking care to prioritize the safety of Pride attendees and vulnerable folks living in north Idaho. Eventually, crews decided the best and safest goals would be to: Create a buffer between the fascists and Pride attendees and mitigate potential harm. Antifascists were ready to defensively put their bodies on the line in case of a violent entrance into the park by fascists in order to slow them down and give Pride attendees more time to leave. Render aid in case of confrontations.
This Pride month is unlike the others. We are facing a moment of unprecedented roll backs of victories won over the last 50 years. Attacks on queer people and queer rights are mounting as the right wing advances their political agenda of limiting our right to our bodies. Over 300 anti LGBTQ+ pieces of legislation have been put forward in state legislatures across the country. Many have passed. Many of these laws specifically target trans children and their ability to access healthcare, play sports, and even go to the bathroom. One especially horrific policy in Texas deems gender affirming healthcare as child abuse and demands that trans children be separated from their supportive parents. They are going after the children, the brave kids who stand in their truth.
Just one day before the 52nd anniversary of the Stonewall uprising, a riot against the police led by trans women of color, New York City cops brutalized and arrested marchers as well as a street vendor. On early Sunday evening, after the Queer Liberation March and the Stonewall Protests’ Pride March, people poured into Washington Square Park. After individuals allegedly moved barricades, the police arrested, brutalized, and pepper-sprayed eight people. Journalist Janus Rose told Gothamist, “The park was packed and people were just hanging out and having a good time after the Queer Liberation March. Then all of a sudden we started seeing dozens of police vans circle around the park with their sirens and lights flashing, pedal to the metal.”
Trans youth are under attack around the country. Though we are only halfway through 2021, it has already become the worst year in recent history for legislative attacks on trans youth. 33 states have introduced anti-trans laws across the country, many of which ban trans students from playing sports. Arkansas recently became the first state to ban trans youth from accessing gender-affirming health care, and many other states have either passed or are debating similar bills. All of these laws must be repealed, and we need to build a militant trans rights movement to defend against these right-wing attacks. The results of efforts to oppress and dehumanize trans people hit trans youth the hardest. The American Journal of Psychiatry reports that trans people are about six times more likely to suffer from mood and anxiety disorders, and over half of trans and nonbinary youth in the U.S. reported having seriously contemplated suicide in 2020.
Every year, Pride Month ushers in the summer. For some, this is a celebration of the Stonewall uprising. For corporations and the Democratic Party, it’s a time to co-opt what was once a radical quer movement. Pride month marks a riot led by a Black trans woman, who threw bricks at the cops and alongside other people of color, queer folks and leftists fought the police in the streets for days. But today, it has become not only a profit scheme for corporations, but a means to portray themselves as allies while covering up their complicity in LGBTQ+ oppression. Bank of America, for example, has presented itself as an ally of the queer community, all the while profiting from privatizing and seizing houses from people.
June is Pride Month – a time set aside to honor the Stonewall uprising, which launched the movement to end discriminatory laws against LGBTQ people – and to remember the many important cultural and legislative victories since that pivotal summer in 1969. This year, the celebration occurs under the cloud of more than 125 anti-LGBTQ bills that have been introduced in state legislatures, many targeting children who identify as transgender by denying them access to lifesaving medical treatment, banning them from participating in sports or using the restroom. This is up markedly from last year when more than 40 such bills were introduced. In fact, 2021 has set a record for the number of anti-trans legislative efforts.
In recent years, trans issues have broken into the mainstream. It didn’t happen overnight; it’s been a long time coming. Trans activists have been at the center of the fight for LGBTQ rights since before Stonewall, decrying discrimination and violence against their peers for decades. Now, between Pride Month and protests centering on Black lives, these issues are in the spotlight again. Black trans activists have taken to social media and the streets, bringing attention in particular to the growing number of murdered Black trans women within their community. For many who’ve criticized the commodification of Pride, it’s been a welcome shakeup. Crosscut spoke to four Black trans organizers who’ve witnessed and been part of this evolution.
Scranton, PA - LGBTQ Pride is turning 50 this year a little short on its signature fanfare, after the coronavirus pandemic drove it to the internet and after calls for racial equality sparked by the killing of George Floyd further overtook it. Activists and organizers are using the intersection of holiday and history in the making — including the Supreme Court’s decision giving LGBT people workplace protections — to uplift the people of color already among them and by making Black Lives Matter the centerpiece of Global Pride events Saturday. “Pride was born of protest,” said Cathy Renna, communications director of the National LGBTQ Task Force, seeing analogies in the pandemic and in common threads of the Black and LGBTQ rights movements.
New York, NY – The Reclaim Pride Coalition (RPC), formed by LGBTQ+ activists in early 2018 to protest the corporatization and gross mismanagement of NYC Pride by Heritage of Pride (HOP), calls for a civil rights march on the 50th anniversary of the historic Stonewall Rebellion. On Sunday, June 30, 2019, RPC along with other activist and community groups from around NYC, the nation and the world, will march in the spirit of the Stonewall Rebellion, celebrating the best of the community – a March that acknowledges both the struggles it's overcome as well as those it still faces in this country and abroad.
By Siobhán McGuirk for Rewire - No Justice No Pride members have elevated an urgent, national conversation. And we’re not sorry. This month, the social justice group No Justice No Pride (NJNP) disrupted the Capital Pride parade in Washington, D.C. The protest attracted a lot of coverage, including some high-profile endorsementsof the collaborative’s demands, which focus on ending Pride’s general complicity with corporate and state institutions that criminalize, harm, and exploit queer and trans people. Just as the D.C. group, of which I am a member, was inspired by recent actions in Phoenix and Toronto, groups across the country have picked up the NJNP baton and are now protesting at the local level. The D.C. action has prompted some commentators to promote false claims about the history and present realities of lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex, asexual, and two-spirit (LGBTQIA2S) communities. This article corrects those myths. MYTH #1: Pride is a celebration, not a protest. Our community has no battles left to fight. FACT: Pride marches commemorate a rebellious insurgency against police brutality and exploitation at the hands of bar owners who colluded with the police. The 1969 Stonewall uprising in New York City was led by trans women of color, and it sparked a movement.
By Olga R. Rodriguez, Rebecca Gibian and Colleen Long and Martha Irvine for Associated Press - SAN FRANCISCO — Tens of thousands of people waving rainbow flags lined streets for gay pride parades Sunday in coast-to-coast events that took both celebratory and political tones, the latter a reaction to what some see as new threats to gay rights in the Trump era. In San Francisco, revelers wearing rainbow tutus and boas held signs that read “No Ban, No Wall, Welcome Sisters and Brothers” while they danced to electronic music at a rally outside City Hall. Frank Reyes said he and his husband decided to march for the first time in many years because they felt a need to stand up for their rights. The couple joined the “resistance contingent,” which led the parade and included representatives from several activist organizations. “We have to be as visible as possible,” said Reyes, wearing a silver body suit and gray and purple headpiece decorated with rhinestones. “Things are changing quickly and we have to take a stand and be noticed,” Reyes’ husband, Paul Brady, added. “We want to let everybody know that we love each other, that we pay taxes and that we’re Americans, too.”
By Julia Craven for The Huffington Post - When the Toronto chapter of Black Lives Matter discovered they were the honored guests at the city’s 2016 pride parade, the group wasn’t very enthused. And on Sunday, activists from the Toronto chapter of Black Lives Matter brought the city’s parade to a halt for about 30 minutes to urge for the inclusion of more black LGBT members in the festivities. “We understood that Toronto Pride has had a history of anti-black racism,” Janaya Khan, a co-founder Black Lives Matter Toronto, told The Huffington Post.
Hundreds of thousands of people on Sunday packed gay pride events from Chicago to New York City, Seattle to San Francisco, with overall attendance expected in the millions for what amounted to a celebration of a freshly endorsed right to marry. In San Francisco, a parade that at times resembled a rainbow-colored dance party snaked through downtown. Cheerleaders, dancers and proud families of lesbians and gays swooped up Market Street as spectators flocked 10 to 15 people deep along both sides. There were "Hooray for Gay" and "Love Won" signs. There were rainbow flags and knee socks, umbrellas and tutus. SF Pride Board President Gary Virginia said the exuberance was amplified given last week's U.S. Supreme Court ruling that same-sex couples can wed in all 50 states. Still, he said more needs to be done in housing and job discrimination in the United States and for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people around the world.
By Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez in SF Examiner - “When people with AIDS are under attack, what do we do? ACT UP! Fight back!” Twenty five years ago, the principal rallying cry of the AIDS virus protesters known as ACT UP rocked the sixth annual AIDS Conference in San Francisco. The protesters chanted, sang songs and engaged in civil disobedience for a week straight. ACT UP San Francisco is seen as a pivotal voice during the early days of the AIDS crisis, winning much public support to increase research funding, change medical processes and otherwise save the lives of those dying. “They hate us, there are no drugs, no one is doing anything, so we have to push things,” said Tim Kingston, a journalist at the time. Grief “was the motivating emotion.” Many demonstrators ended up dying from AIDS.