The D.C. Capital Pride Parade was interrupted earlier today by protestors.
Protestors from No Justice No Pride blocked the parade route at 15th and P streets at about 5:30 in the afternoon.
They joined arms and carried a pink, turquoise, and yellow banner across the entire street while shouting “No justice, no pride.”
Police quickly acted by grouping around the protestors and rerouting the parade. No arrests were made.
That said, other Parade participants were upset by the situation and shouted back at the protestors saying, “Shame! Shame!” or “I fought for 20 years for this, and now you’re going to ruin the parade,” as JoeMyGod says one man shouted.
In addition, the group posted a statement online about the message behind the protest:
DC’s queer and trans community is no longer willing to accept that Pride isn’t possible without support from deeply problematic corporate sponsors. Capital Pride has consistently demonstrated that it is more interested in accommodating the interests of Metropolitan police and of corporate sponsors than it is in supporting the very communities it supposedly represents.
Because of the current political climate and in response to years of being dismissed and ignored by Capital Pride, members of Washington, DC’s queer and trans community took direct action on Saturday, June 10, blocking the Capital Pride parade.
Similar to other protests at Pride events around the country, members of No Justice No Pride, an ad-hoc coalition of local organizers, brought the parade to halt, offering a different vision for what LGBTQ Pride looks like and demanding that the Capital Pride board bar the participation of institutions that harm LGBTQ2S communities, specifically naming metropolitan police as well as corporations who profit from pipelines and war.
“We deserve to celebrate Pride without being forced alongside the Police who kill us,” says Angela Peoples, one of the participants. “Pride should be a haven for the entire LGBTQ community. The Capital Pride Board has shown who it’s prioritizing. No Justice No Pride is for everyone who has previously been excluded and for a different vision of what this event could and should be.”
Today’s direct action comes after many attempts, this year and in years past, to get Capital Pride’s executive leadership to address the contradiction between including corporations that profit from harming LGBTQ2S communities and the police who jail Trans and LGBQ2S people of color being invited to march in what is supposed to be a celebration for the people they target.
Many other groups that tried to participate in the event were upset that the events had been halted or altogether ruined by this protesting.
It seems that like the Philadelphia campaign hoping to add new colors to the rainbow flag, in trying to get attention for people of color within the LGBTQ community, protestors have in fact ostracized some allies and supporters within the community.