this year pride toronto is selling t-shirts and merch that say "I BELONG" and "CAN'T STOP/WON' STOP" on them.. very interesting considering the following:
yesterday at rabble andrew brett wrote about how "pro-israel" lobbyists(b'nai brith) threatened the government and corporate sponsorship of the toronto pride festival unless pride bans pro-palestinian marchers from participating in the parade.
apparently martin gladstone has met with and written to the pride committee many times asking them to ban queers against israeli apartheid( a totally legit group, btw), claiming that their presence has "very eerie parallels to nazi germany"
umm... you know what else has parallels to nazi germany? banning groups from participating in their community's own parade and festivities and punishing people for their political beliefs by pulling these seedy and totally unethical 'im holding your funding hostage' moves.
remember how under the nazis homosexuals were also persecuted?
gladstone has said that the city of toronto and td canada trust, who are major sponsors of the event, have both contacted the pride committee and expressed their "opposition to the inclusion of the anti-apartheid contingent."
this morning an update was posted that pride banned queers against israeli apartheid. according to their statement
"Pride Toronto wishes to state publicly that it is a non-partisan organization created to serve the LGBTTIQQ2S* community of Toronto in all its cultural, religious, ethnic and sexual diversity. The organization does not have any affiliations whatsoever to political entities or causes."
complete and total fucking bullshit. really? the organization does not have any affiliations whatsoever to political entities or causes? what about the corporations whose money you're beholden to, those corporations ARE affiliated to political entities and causes and by affiliation pride is as well.
also, thanks pride for deciding who and who may not participate in an event that is supposed to be inclusive.
ANYONE who is participating in toronto pride this year should not do so unless they contact pride and tell them how disgusted they are with their decision. pride is pride, and queer political groups should have just as much right to march as anyone else--queer political groups are the most targeted, the most marginalized, and the most willing to go to the frontlines to fight for queer rights and pride toronto is just going to ban them?
right, because its just better to fucking plaster yourself with corporate logos and glitter and strip your clothes off down church street because pride "isn't political."
like it or not it IS political and this decision sets a disgusting precedent that noone should feel settled with. queer and gay rights don't exist in a vacuum, they are intrinsically linked to political and human rights across the globe and to ignore this issue and just march around all day pretending that all is well with the world is not only lieing to yourself and your community but also being totally complicit.
do something, we don't let people tell us who we can fuck or love so why is it alright for the pride committee itself to ban people from participating in their own fucking parade!?
this is a list of pride's sponsors(including bud light, pepsi, pizza pizza, yellowtail, trojan, and via rail), pick one, send them an email:
td bank put the pressure on? if you're a client call your bank, i am a td client and i'm going to call today and tell them i'm closing my account with them:
you can go here and contact b'nai brith directly: http://www.bnaibrith.ca/contactus.html
and let's not forget pride toronto, who would have us throw away our politics for one day in the sparkly corporate sponsored sun: firstname.lastname@example.org