June 2020 – Pride month. But Pride with a difference. The pandemic has cancelled the parade and at the same time the killing of George Floyd has illuminated the fact that racism is everywhere, playing out interpersonally and systemically with fatal consequences.
Black Lives Matter asks each of us to think about our role in a system that has racism woven into it. Reni Eddo-Lodge reminds how this attitude and its insidious practices are embedded in education, economics and public policy. The world is being called to act. The same way people everywhere have come together to fight Covid, we are seeing people rise to call time on racism. The pandemic of racism – as Benjamin Crump called it – has to be faced as urgently as we are attending to coronavirus.
In the LGBT+ community it comes together far too often in hate expressed towards Trans people of colour. There is bullying and verbal abuse, acts of physical violence and of course, those appalling numbers of trans people of colour being murdered.
So as we celebrate Pride this year we should be mindful that Pride is not just a party. It was, and it remains, a protest of inequality and injustice. Our public and professional communities can take the opportunity to stop and think. To look at ourselves and explore the ways that racism contaminates our community and our spaces. In particular we need to consider the multiple injustices our black trans people have to navigate. To think about how we become the community we can be, we want to be and should be. Allies together whether it’s homophobia, Transphobia or racism – or the intersection of them all – we confront. This is the month to start a truly intersectional challenge to hate and injustice. P