BLACK LIVES MATTER
These are difficult times, not because of the conditions that keep us indoors, but because we are brutally confronted by the inequitable and unjust systems built into the structures of society. We condemn the murders of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, Ahmaud Arbery, David MacAtee, and so many other victims of anti-Black violence who have come before.
The Leslie-Lohman Museum is here witnessing. We are heartbroken, we are angry, and we are forever an institution that is committed to anti-racism. Yet, in spite of the radical and beautiful histories of the Museum, we, like all other museums, are plagued by the very same inequities and blind spots that are being protested on the streets today. We strive to hold space for multiple subjectivities, and to be an intersectional platform, and commit to our own structural change.
Uprising brings visibility to a movement. Every June we march as an annual tribute to the 1969 Stonewall riots, to commemorate those who stood up against oppressive homophobic systems and demanded visibility and civil rights. The Stonewall protests helped make the biases against Queer people visible to a broader public. We must also acknowledge the confronting truth that the LGBTQ rights movement is rife with racism and race-based discriminations. When we look for representation of Black and Brown people in the historic images of Stonewall, eerily there are only a handful – if that. Queer Black and Brown people have been leading this fight from the beginning, but they are often erased. When the Stonewall Inn was raided by the police they were the first to be arrested and beaten down. Violence and systemic racism continues to target Black and Brown people. This history is long and remarkably consistent; it needs to end.
But Stonewall was not the beginning of the LGBTQ rights movement. It was an explosion that came out of enduring too many years of homophobia and violence. This 2020 Pride season, that sentiment is magnified by the memory of Stonewall, and the current protests erupting across the country in response to the murder of George Floyd, and countless others, by sanctioned police brutality. Black lives matter. We stand in solidarity with those calling for racial justice and an end to all forms of oppression. Now is the moment for us to use our collective voices, networks, and positions of power in real space and time, to make change and end the systematic oppression of those who have been and continue to be marginalized.
“I am proud to raise my voice here in this day as black, lesbian feminist committed to struggle for a world where all our children can grow free from the diseases of racism, of sexism, of classism, and of homophobia. For those oppressions are inseparable.” – Audre Lorde, 1979 1st March on Washington for Lesbian and Gay Rights
RESOURCES AND DONATIONS
Black-led LGBTQ+ Organization
Snap For Freedom
Atlanta-based, Black Trans and Queer led, abolitionist organization. Snap For Freedom builds power of Black trans and Queer people to force systemic divestment from the prison industrial complex and in invest in community support
Black AIDS Institute
BAI is the only national HIV/AIDS think tank focused exclusively on Black people, and working to end the Black Hiv epidemic through policy, advocacy, and high-quality direct HIV services.
Trans Cultural District
The worlds first-ever legally recognized trans district which aims to stabilize and economically empower the trans community
LGBTQ+ Freedom Fund
Post bail for LGBTQ+ people held in jail or immigrant detention centers and raises awareness of the epidemic of GLBTQ+ over-incarcceration.
House of GG
Founded and led by Trans and gender nonconforming people and allies, House of GG create safe and transformative spaces where members of our community can heal and nurture them into tomorrow’s leaders. Focusing on support for trans women of color in the south.
Trans Justice Funding Project
Acommunity-led funding initiative founded in 2012 to support grassroots, trans justice groups run by and for trans people. Organizing around racism, economic injustice, transmisogyny, ableism, immigration, incarceration, and other intersecting oppressions.
The Okra Project
The Okra Project is a collective that seeks to address the global crisis faced by Black Trans people by bringing home cooked, healthy, and culturally specific meals and resources to Black Trans People wherever we can reach them.
Works to end the criminalization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth (ages 13-25) in New Orleans through youth organizing, healing justice, and leadership development programs.
[original lists compiled by Raquel Willis and Phillip Picardi]
Image: JEB (Joan E. Biren) , Audre Lorde (Reads her words, Wash, DC), 1980, silver gelatin print, 19 x 13.8 in. Gift of the artist. Collection of the Leslie-Lohman Museum.