LA and NYC Prides Announce Rallies Against Police Brutality

"We feel it is our moral imperative," LA Pride organizers said.

Resistance has always been at the heart of Pride, and organizers in two major U.S. cities are recognizing that legacy.

LA Pride and NYC Pride have announced new initiatives in the wake of the nationwide protests against systemic racism and police brutality. LA Pride 2020 will now be a march in solidarity with Black Lives Matter, although it is unclear whether the event is a collaboration with the group, according to CBS News.

The march is scheduled for Sunday, June 14—the same day that would have been Los Angeles’ 50th annual Pride parade, which was postponed in March and later canceled amid the onset of the coronavirus pandemic.

Christopher Street West, the nonprofit that organizes LA Pride each year, said the rally was its “moral imperative” to “honor the legacy of Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera, who bravely led the Stonewall Uprising, by standing in solidarity with the Black community against systemic racism and joining the fight for meaningful and long-lasting reform.”

In the Big Apple, NYC Pride organizers are taking their anti-racism initiative online with The Rally, a virtual event to protest police brutality and discrimination. The event is scheduled for Friday, June 26, which would have marked the beginning of the city’s Pride 2020 festivities. It will be livestreamed on @NYCPride’s social channels and is free to attend.

Ashlee Marie Preston, a Black trans journalist and activist, and Brian Michael Smith, a Black trans actor (The L Word: Generation Q, Queen Sugar), will host.

The new events come more than a week after the death of George Floyd, an unarmed Black man killed by police in Minneapolis, Minnesota. His untimely death—and the killing of countless other Black Americans, including Tony McDade, a trans man shot by police Florida—has prompted protests against racism and police brutality across the country.

On Tuesday, activists in New York City gathered at the Stonewall Inn for a protest and vigil honoring Black LGBTQ lives lost to police brutality. Officials in both LA and NYC have implemented nightly curfews, ostensibly to deter protestors from gathering.

Brooklyn-based writer and editor. Probably drinking iced coffee or getting tattooed.
@_sammanzella