if you make a rude comment regarding women’s sports/female athletes, chances are im already driving to your house to fight u
spagka said: how do you think Pride should go about aiding non cis gays?
A few things off the top of my head…
Pick a theme that’s relevant to local queers.
The theme for Pride this year was “Free to Love.” As explained by the Chair in the booklet, “Free to Love is about celebrating the rights and freedoms that many of us in Ottawa enjoy, while standing with those for whom the struggle continues.”
They’re referring to struggles abroad. Like most cisgays, they are wholly oblivious to how messed up things are in Ottawa if you’re not among their highly privileged ranks.
The rampant transphobia on Ottawa’s streets. The 40% of homeless youth in Ottawa who are queer. The elderly queers who have to go back in the closet for the nursing homes. The ableism, sexism, fat-shaming, racism, stigmas, transmysoginy and cissexism that’s rampant in our own communities.
Be the community you represent.
The board of directors are all cisgays.
Have French content.
A third of the queers in Ottawa are Francophone yet all the support groups, workshops, and events are exclusively in English. At most someone will sometimes say a few opening words in French before going back to English, or say in English how someone can ask a question at the end of their English-only event in French if they want.
Pride’s idea of being accessible to francophones is to translate their schedule for their events in French in their booklet. All the events are, of course, really in English. At most someone will say a few token words in French at a flag raising.
Disallow prison themed-events.
Pride this year has “Penal Code Weekend” and “Incarceration BBQ.” These are not to show solidarity and they’re not relevant to the events occurring within its scope, like the really cool Ottawa Pup.
If you have enough good fortune for prison to be a laughing matter, great. But it isn’t so for many queers out there, including those that this event is supposed to include.
Do activism that matters.
Their idea of activism are to hold vigils.
Being in the same space in silence for a few minutes doesn’t change anything. It doesn’t make you more aware. It doesn’t make others more aware. It just makes its participants feel better about themselves over a subject most of them don’t even comprehend.
So how do you do activism that matters?
Have events that can actually make a difference for trans people.
A clothing swap. Workshops on strategies for coping with harassment/workplace/home. Discussions for post-op folk for themselves. Discussions for others who are pre-HRT. Tutorials for binding for people who can’t afford binders, prosthetic boob making crafting sessions for transfeminine folk, packer crafting sessions for transmasculine folk.
A mixer for established trans activists to speak to each other doesn’t accomplish anything. Have lawyers on hand to do free sign offs on paperwork.
Have events that can actually make a difference for queer people.
The sex ed workshop school never gave you. Coming out to your parents. Dealing with ageing whilst queer. Support groups for those looking to start a new family.
Have blocks for free therapy sessions. Distribute information for resources people can turn to.
Use existing platforms to spread awareness.
They have all these events - flag raisings, movie nights - use them to give space to voices that need to be heard to make a difference. Don’t just jump into a movie, have a minute set aside before each event for awareness raising.
The microphone is there. Use it.
How cool would it be if POWER got to speak at the flag raisings? And Families of Sisters in Spirit? Instead of just another cisgay saying how things are good for them?
They also print a booklet. They could have included local resources for queers to turn to. List the support groups in Ottawa, where they are, when they are. Crisis line phone numbers. Websites. It could have just been a single page in this sixty page booklet. There’s none of that.
Don’t just say it, do it.
There’s a movie night talking about how difficult it is for queer asylum seekers. Heck it’s also the theme for the whole thing - yet there’s no events aimed at new Canadians. This duality between what they say they care about (all queers) and who they actually target (cisgays) is evident all throughout the week-long event, including at this.
I counted sixty two faces in the photos of the booklet they gave. They were almost all cisgays, two straight people doing drag, and three drag queens. I didn’t see a single trans person. I saw three queer youth. I didn’t see a queer elderly person. Or a fat person. They were almost all white.
Fuck yeah party! Pride does that right.
…no matter how many books we read, how many ally trainings we participate in, or how sharp an analysis of power we think we have, we can never totally know one another. We will never have a complete knowledge of how not to hurt another human being. We can have a million conversations but I will never know what it feels like to live inside your body and the meanings that are attached to it. You can never truly know what it feels like to live inside my body and the meanings that are attached to it. And if we can never truly know one another, how can we ever truly be good to one another?
The project of being good to one another is, ultimately, a failed project. But we must be good to one another we must try and fail and try again and fail again and try forever more. A performance of political perfection is always already a performance of failure. The so-called politically perfect performance has all the color and distance of José Muñoz’s queer utopian horizon. We are not yet queer, we are not yet liberated, and therefore, every single performance we enact, whether on stage or in the everyday, must strive for political perfection, must move ALL of us closer to liberation"