During Stockholm Pride we manifest all people’s equal worth and protest against sexism, LGBTQ-hatred and racism. RFSL and RFSL Ungdom participate with seminars and walk in the parade arranged by Stockholm Pride. Because Pride Järva takes place during the same week we want to talk about what our organisations work for and why we don’t support the initiative Pride Järva.
Stockholm Pride was first presented in its current form in 1998, and this year Pride is celebrated for the first time in, among other places, Borås and Kristianstad. The festivals are often arranged by LGBTQ individuals that fight for safety and visibility in their areas; that fight to end discrimination or threats. Pride is one of the more visible and outreaching manifestations that are made, but for many of us the work for LGBTQ individuals’ rights is an everyday task. Regardless of city, religion, age or colour, teachers, executives, librarians, politicians and non-profit organisations in civil society work hard and together. The work that RFSL and Stockholm Pride does is based on feminist and anti-racist values, since the work for human rights can’t be done at the expense of others and because many of us have experienced both homophobia, racism and Islamophobia. You can’t work against any discrimination with any form of credibility if you at the same time endorse or reproduce other kinds of discrimination.
That is why we distance ourselves from Pride Järva that for the second year in a row has been initiated by Jan Sjunnesson, ex editor in chief of Sverigedemokraterna’s newspaper Samtiden. Sjunnesson has spread hatred towards Muslims numerous times and does not support all LGBTQ individuals’ rights. This year Milo Yiannopoulos has been invited by Sjunnesson to participate at Pride Järva. Yiannoppoulos is driven by Islamophobia and has at his own Twitter account announced that he will parade in Sweden through a ”ghetto”. Yiannoppoulos has also announced his support for the so called ”toilet laws” in the USA that discriminate against and restricts trans people’s rights. Yiannoppoulos has been banned from Twitter for life because his hate rhetoric.
The LGBTQ movement is wide and is made up of a host of different individuals and groups. We come from all parts of the city, all parts of the world and dream all kinds of different dreams. We practice different beliefs and religions and our organisations will never join racist or Islamophobic environments. Conservative, fascistic and fundamentalist forces are something that LGBTQ individuals have always had to defend themselves against and sometimes flee from, which of course is unacceptable. Many LGBTQ individuals have themselves experienced threat and violence from the groups that the organisers behind Pride Järva belong to.
We support Pride arrangements that share our values and that really care about LGBTQ individuals’ rights. Not the ones who claim to do that, but whose purpose is to increase the hatred against other groups.
STOCKHOLM PRIDE, RFSL, RFSL STOCKHOLM, RFSL UNGDOM