Tuesday, February 7, 2017

LGBTQ Solidarity Rally NYC: A Liberal Diversity Blizzard

This past Saturday, February 4th 2017, my fellow @ArtistsForDemocracy and I were at yet another rally, this time in solidarity with the LGBTQ community. All minorities feel threatened under the new administration, and the LGBTQ rights are as fragile as ever. Many of the rally speakers talked about being refugees, persecuted in their native countries for having different gender identities. So their confluence of sexual orientations, gender identities, countries of origin and immigration or refugee statuses made them that much more vulnerable in present-day America. However, Senator Chuck Schumer, Comptroller Scott Stringer and other officials, who attended this rally, repeatedly vowed to keep New York a sanctuary city. The mood at the rally was most positive and optimistic.

Director of NYU Islamic Center started his speech with "Our Jewish Brothers and Sisters..." He condemned the president for omitting Jews in his speech on the Holocaust Remembrance Day. He ended with "You don't have to be Jewish to stand for Jewish rights. You don't have to be a woman to stand for women's rights. You don't have to be gay to stand for gay rights. You don't have to be Muslim to stand for Muslim rights."
Openly gay New York State Senator Brad Hoylman, who had swastikas etched on his house after the appointment of Bannon. The Senator called everyone to text the word "TAXES" to the 41411 number, as a way of casting a vote for disclosure of taxes for presidential candidates.

Portraits of more speakers. One of them is a Jewish gay man who fights for Muslim rights. Oliver from Nigeria, who was persecuted for being a gay activist there, found his refuge in America; he pleaded with us not to preach to the choir, but to those who support Trump.  And another speaker, whose name I, sadly, didn't catch, said that being called a liberal snowflake is appropriate, because no two snowflakes are alike, and together we create a diversity blizzard. I loved that metaphor.


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