Pride: When a Riot led to World Transformation
Under more ‘normal’ circumstances June would typically be the month in which many different countries all around the world take part in the celebration of Pride Month.
This year however, the pride experience is one that is surely meant for the history books. Indeed, we are currently living through quite the historical epoch. It will be the first time in our collective history where we will all celebrate and honour pride together, from afar.
June 2020 has been marked particularly by the strong wave of protests, riots, civil unrest and disobedience all throughout the USA and other countries. Where citizens from over 2000 cities and towns all across the country and beyond, raised their voices en masse. Denouncing the terrible injustices that have been and still are committed against the black community. Black trans women, mothers, fathers, daughters & sons, brothers & sisters, all of whom have been persecuted, marginalised and mistreated, suffered greatly. In the face of racism, prejudice, police brutality and even death. The violent passing of George Floyd is arguably one of the strongest ever catalysts to exact an even stronger stance in the ever-present fight for basic human rights in the US. Black Lives Matter! Reverberated on the North American continent from the 26th of May, the same sentiment still echoes up and down the country today as well as many others, who joined in solidarity.
How is this in any way relevant to Pride you might wonder?
It might be interesting for you to learn that the joyous rainbow coloured, and glitter sprinkled parades were once not so shiny and bright. The first ever pride in history was in fact, a riot. The first bricks of which, were (arguably) thrown by two trans women of colour. Marsha P Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, names often associated with the Stonewall riots, both of whom were at the forefront of the LGBTQ+ rights movement. On Wednesday June 28th 1969, in Greenwich Village, New York City.
So you see, if it wasn’t for the strength and bravery portrayed by the black trans community, the LGBTQ+ rights movement would have never been properly put in motion. Many of those currently in the LGBTQ+ community would not be able to enjoy the liberties that they fought for on all our behalves.
This is why now more than ever, we must all stand with and show support to the black communities, through their literature, art, and magnifying their voices. By looking within, and recognising our own faults we will improve our communities, our ruling bodies and by extension, ourselves. We must rise and do our best to aid and assist one and all in any way we are able.
To the entirety of the black community this is a message of gratitude and support we thank you; we love you, we see you and we support you.
Stay Healthy and Stay Safe this Pride
-The ilāpothecary Team