June 3, 2019
As an African LGBTQ community member and activist, for a long time Stonewall has been and is a symbol for the fight that was won by those that came before us, and the fight ahead that I still have to continue to help my people get the rights we deserve just as any other human being.
When I think of Stonewall and Pride I reflect that a few years ago, those before me had the same dream that I hold today. They wished to live in a community free from discrimination, hate-based attacks, segregation and living in fear. That instills in me a sense of purpose and respect. Through that history I understand the sacrifices front line voices have to make when we choose to say, “Enough is enough and we shall not be silenced or ignored anymore.”
In my activism at home, Pride has been not only about educating the masses that cause harm to us but also standing with my LGBTQ people to let them know that we shall continue showing up until we are accepted. The history of Stonewall is my trumpet that continues to blow loud especially in moments when I feel hopeless and drained.
For many African LGBTQ movements Stonewall is the epitome of HOPE. Many LGBTQ people from countries where it is illegal to be gay admire how far the LGBTQ community in the USA has come and we cannot talk about this motivating factor without recognizing where it all started – Stonewall.
To know that a community we have such admiration for back in our home countries once struggled with discrimination, hate and the segregation that we are currently facing is very bonding for us. We feel and know that we are not alone – but most importantly we look at Stonewall and all the history that surrounds it and we are re-energized not to give up; it’s like that small glimpse of light when all is going dark and you tap your shoulder knowing that “They won the great fight, we too can.”
What better means then of showing our gratitude for those that paved the way that has shaped many LGBTQ movements world wide, than celebrating the Stonewall revolution!