Let’s march!

by Mahkesha Hogg
LGBTQ Black Issues Columnist

With spring arriving soon, new things are blooming. New activists are rising up every day to take on an administration that is seemingly anti-everything. People who never considered themselves activists before are taking to the streets to fight for issues such as women’s rights, refugee and immigration rights, black lives matter (BLM) and LGBTQ rights just to name a few.

This is good news for the black LGBTQ community because, just as we saw in OKC with the BLM peaceful protest against police brutality, we are seeing that all civil rights issues are being fought together. The unity amongst all ethnicities, nationalities and cultural backgrounds makes all our fights stronger.

At the Women’s March on Washington, we saw three million marchers on seven continents gather to let their voices be heard. These voices drowned out the hopeless feelings that many of us had when the Trump administration took office. It was the largest march in U.S. history. Folks started to finally realize that if one group is marginalized then we can be all marginalized.

There was some controversy in which some subgroups within the Women’s March wanted to focus on the fact that some white women were just now awakening to the oppression of women of color. Some of the Washington organizers even went as far as to tell the white women to shut up and learn.

To me that was only going to divide our cause and make us look like we weren’t cohesive. I get what they were saying and those issues are important, but if you are going to fight against a machine you must look and sound unified. You must find the commonalities and uphold them. Division and bickering is what the opposition wants.

Are you ready to get your marching shoes on? I am. The Women’s March has inspired a new national march specifically for LGBTQ rights. The National Pride March on Washington will be taking place this June at the nation’s capital. This march needs our presence across the globe especially for those brothers and sisters in Africa who face criminal charges, beatings and even death for being LGBTQ.

Our own Vice President Pence is an advocate of the psychological torture known as conversion therapy (the attempt at turning gay people straight or transgender to cisgender). How barbaric in the land of the free? This administration cannot dim the equality flame that Obama lit.

So, we must carry on the torch and never stop, never back down, never go backwards. We will keep our rights and marriages. We will have children and show the world that our families are just like everyone else’s. We will fight with our brains. We will not be afraid to kiss in public or hold hands. We will stare bigotry in the face and say this is how we love.

This is how we win!

Copyright 2017 The Gayly - 3/14/2017 @ 9:12 a.m. CDT