Pride Events Are Preparing for the Worst This Year
Multiple Pride events around the country are either upping security or scaling back their offerings because of increasing threats of anti-LGBTQ+ violence.
NYC Pride emailed a statement to media outlets about its heightened security at this year’s Pride, which takes place on Sunday, June 25. “NYC Pride updates its policies surrounding safety, wellness, accessibility, sustainability and more to reinforce and reassert our commitment to ensuring the safety and well-being of event goers and the greater community,” the statement reads. “These policies continue NYC Pride’s ongoing efforts to acknowledge and be accountable for public safety measures that have inflicted harm to transgender, womxn, black, indigenous and peoples of color that have engaged in NYC Pride events.” NYC Pride banned police and corrections officers from marching in uniform at Pride in 2021 due to “violence, harm, and abuse at NYC Pride Events.”
Meanwhile, the Pride Alliance of Treasure Coast, Florida announced last month that it would be scaling back its Pride events because of Florida’s anti-drag laws, which effectively criminalize being trans in public. The Pride Alliance canceled its Pride Parade, and announced that its Pridefest event would be limited to attendees aged 21 and over.
Although anti-LGBTQ+ sentiment has risen dramatically in the last year, with states like Florida passing sweeping laws targeting trans people, Pride events have seen escalations in violence in previous years, too. In 2022, 31 white nationalists in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho were arrested after they attempted to riot at a local Pride event.
Although nowadays, many people associate Pride with joyful celebrations, Pride Month started with the 1969 Stonewall Uprising as a call for queer liberation. With increasing hatred and violence directed at queer communities, Pride may return to its roots as a site of rebellion.
Republicans are launching a full-on assault on LGBTQ+ people
Laws like Florida’s drag ban aren’t about women’s sports or locker rooms. They aren’t about grooming or pedophilia. Those are made-up talking points crafted by bigots, designed to chip away at resistance to their real agenda: a complete erasure of queerness.
Several states have either passed or are crafting bills that ban gender-affirming care for minors and forcibly detransition trans people. Meanwhile, Pride displays at Target are being pulled because violence against store employees, thanks to conservatives like Matt Walsh calling for boycotts of any LGBTQ+ friendly retailer.
Despite what conservatives might tell you, their actions are clear. Their movement is fueled by hate, which means Pride events must go to greater lengths to create the safe spaces queer folks so desperately need.
(featured image: Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images)
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