Did you know that the first Gay Pride parade in 1970 was to commemorate the 1 year anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising against police brutality against queer youth & transwomen? Did you know that the Stonewall Riots actually got started by trans women of color like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera? Did you know that these Sheros of the movement were later banned from Gay Pride parades for being trans women and having radical politics?
Pride history is full of traditions of queer and trans folks on the margins organizing to disrupt Pride parades and festivals for their corporatization, heavy police presence, and overall failure to support and uplift queer and trans youth of color, many facing homelessness and criminalization in supposedly LGBTQ-friendly communities.
This tradition is alive and gaining momentum this year. As Pride season gears, we want to uplift a legacy of disrupting Pride across the globe.
Our very brief slideshow timeline begins with ACT UP & Queer Nation halting the Chicago Pride parade in 1992, demanding more attention to the AIDS epidemic and shaming the Pride parade organizers for letting the Chief of Police lead the parade. We end with the disruption in April of 2017, when Trans Queer Pueblo disrupts Phoenix Pride, demanding the organizers use their power and influence to assist undocumented LGBTQ people who are held in detention centers.
We also included some articles highlighting Pride parade disruptions that we hope you'll gain some inspiration from this Pride season. Stay tuned next week for Part Two of this Disrupt Pride history series!
Do you see a Pride disruption missing? Oh no! We're sorry about that! Please help us by filling out this form and letting us know! We'll update our list weekly.
Are you in D.C. and want to get involved in No Justice No Pride efforts? Join the group on Facebook!
Monica Trinidad is a queer, Latinx artist & organizer based in Chicago, IL. Her first arrest was supporting Black queer & trans organizers in shutting down the Chicago Pride parade in 2015. She is currently the Digital Organizing Director for GetEQUAL, and author of this blog post.
Angela Peoples is an organizer, activist, & advocate working toward the liberation of all Black people. She is currently the Director of GetEQUAL.
June 1992 - Chicago:
ACT UP Chicago & Queer Nation disrupt Chicago Pride parade by staging a die-in. They were calling attention to the lack of support around the AIDS epidemic, as well as calling out the organizers for allowing the Chief of Police to lead the parade.
June 1993 - San Francisco:
ACT UP San Francisco showed up at the Pride Parade (with tomatoes!) to prevent Mayor Frank Jordan from marching -- and, succeeded!
July 2, 2003 - San Francisco:
Six activists (Gay Shame) jailed in San Francisco protest
June 2008 - Chicago:
Bash Back! Chicago disrupts Pride with radical message & theater
June 2012 - San Francisco:
OccuPride disrupts Pride; calling for community not commodity
June 2013 - DC:
Wells Fargo protest at D.C. Gay Pride parade
June 2015 - Denver:
Buried Seedz of Resistance & allies shut down Pride parade
June 2015 - Boston:
#WickedPissed activists disrupt Boston Pride parade
June 2015 - Chicago:
Black queer & trans activists shut down Chicago Pride Parade
#BlackOutPride Action Disrupts Chicago Pride Parade
September 2015 - Durham:
Black Lives Matter queer & trans activists disrupt Pride
February 2016 - Aukland, New Zealand:
No Pride in Prisons, activists disrupt Pride Parade
March 2016 - Melbourne, Australia:
Queer & Trans organizers disrupt annual Pride parade
July 2016 - Toronto, Canada:
Black Lives Matter - Toronto shuts down Pride parade
February 2017 - Canada:
Canada cities are banning police from Pride
March 2017 - Los Angeles:
LGBTQ Resist March to replace regular Pride march
April 2017 - Phoenix:
Trans Queer Pueblo disrupts Pride parade
June 10, 2017 - D.C.:
Capital Pride parade disrupted by protesters
Ten Myths about #NoJusticeNoPride
June 13, 2017 - Boston:
Anti-racist, anti-capitalists: Boston Pride in protest
June 17, 2017 - Columbus:
4 Protestors arrested at Columbus Pride Parade
GetEQUAL's statement of solidarity with #BlackPride4
June 25, 2017 - Seattle:
Black Lives Matter protesters shut down Seattle Pride parade
June 25, 2017 - NYC:
12 Arrested at NYC Pride Parade Outside Stonewall Inn
June 25, 2017 - Twin Cities:
Movement for Black Lives activists disrupt Minneapolis Pride to protest Philando Castile verdict
June 25, 2017 - Chicago:
Chicago Pride Parade Route was stopped by activists
June 25, 2017 - Toronto:
Black Lives Matter makes symbolic return to Toronto Pride