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Radicalism Is Part Of Our History

 

Radicalism is part of our history.  The LGBTQ community has achieved the levels of equality we enjoy today in part because members of our community refused to play nice.  The Stonewall uprising afterall was a riot.  And anger – anger at powerful institutions, governments, and people – is an appropriate and understandable response to the injustices we continue to face.  When one out of every five young people caught up in the criminal justice system identify as LGBTQ and when 22% of LGBTQ people live in poverty (including 30% of trans folx); rage at the systems which over criminalize us and marginalize us economically is absolutely legitimate.

And just as radicalism is a central part of queer liberation, so is inclusion.  We are also a community that has opened our arms wide to bring in as many LGBTQ people and our allies as possible.  Over the past decades, our rage and our love have worked together to build a movement that has achieved unprecedented wins.

As we move toward the end of Pride month, we will see (and indeed have seen) the full range of queer expression manifest.  We encourage our community and our allies to hold space for the diversity of response to LGBTQ injustices.  We also call on our community and our allies to avoid any calls – explicit or implicit – to violence against groups or individuals as part of our march toward full queer liberation.  Anger has a role in our movement; violence does not.  As a community, we are our best when we pair our rage with our love.