« I’m not trying to not be very politically political, but when it targets my community, I feel very, very annoyed and very hurt, » said Ve Cinder, a 22-year-old transgender woman who traveled from Pennsylvania to take part in at the largest Pride event in the country.
“I’m just, like, scared for my future and my trans brothers. I am afraid of how this country has looked at human rights, basic human rights,” she said. « It’s crazy. »
Parades in New York, Chicago and San Francisco are among the events that nearly 400 Pride organizations across the United States are organizing this year, many specifically focused on the rights of transgender people.
One of the big marshals of the New York City parade is non-binary activist AC Dumlao, chief of staff of Athlete Ally, a group that advocates for LGBTQ+ athletes.
“Elevating the trans community has always been at the heart of our events and programming,” said NYC Pride spokesperson Dan Dimant.
San Francisco Pride, another of the largest and most well-known LGBTQ+ celebrations in the United States, drew tens of thousands of spectators to the city on Sunday.
The event, initiated by the Dykes on Bikes group, featured dozens of colorful floats, some carrying strong messages against the surge in anti-transgender laws in state homes across the country.
Organizers told the San Francisco Chronicle that this year’s theme places an emphasis on activism. The parade included the nation’s first drag laureate, D’Arcy Drollinger.
“When we traverse the world more authentically and more fabulously, we inspire everyone,” Drollinger said over breakfast before the parade.
Along Market Street, former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Congressman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) were seen riding together.
In Chicago, 16-year-old Maisy McDonough painted rainbow colors on her eyes and face for her first Pride parade.
She told the Chicago Tribune she’s excited to « come together » after a tough year for the community.
« We really need the love of this parade, » she said.
On Saturday, first lady Jill Biden made an appearance at the Pride parade in Nashville, Tennessee, where she told the crowd « loud and clear that you belong, that you are beautiful, that you are loved. »
Several other cities held their main events earlier this month, including Boston, which hosted its first parade after a three-year hiatus that began with Covid-19 but extended through 2022 because the organization that The management disbanded due to criticism that it excluded racism from minorities and transgender people.
A key message this year has been for LGBTQ+ communities to unite against dozens, if not hundreds, of bills currently before state homes across the country.
Lawmakers in 20 states have moved to ban gender-affirming child care, and at least seven more are considering doing the same, adding greater urgency for the transgender community, its advocates say.
“We are under threat,” Pride event organizers in New York, San Francisco and San Diego said in a statement that was joined by about 50 other Pride organizations nationwide. “The different dangers we are facing as LGBTQ communities and Pride organizers, while differing in nature and intensity, share a common trait: they seek to undermine our love, our identity, our freedom, our safety and our lives” .
On Sunday, New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed into law a bill that would make the state a « safe haven » for transgender youth and ban law enforcement agencies from providing information that could undermine a child’s ability to get treatment. that affirm gender.
New York Mayor Eric Adams made a similar move this week, issuing an executive order barring the use of city resources to cooperate with out-of-state authorities in detaining anyone receiving gender-affirming treatment in the city.
The Anti-Defamation League and GLAAD, a national LGBTQ+ organization, reported 101 anti-LGBTQ+ incidents in the first three weeks of this month, roughly double the number for the entire month of June last year.
Sarah Moore, who analyzes extremism for the two civil rights groups, said many of the incidents coincided with Pride events.
However, Roz Gould Keith, who has a transgender son, is heartened by the increased visibility of transgender people at marches and celebrations across the country.
« Ten years ago, when my son asked to go to Motor City Pride, there was nothing for the trans community, » said Keith, founder and executive director of Stand with Trans, a group formed to support and empower young people transgenders and their families.
This year, she said, the event was « packed » with transgender people.