LGBT+ landmark, The Stonewall Inn, was the location for a rally attended by thousands organised to protest against the killings of black trans people through police brutality and transphobic violence.
Protestors gathered outside Stonewall in the names of Tony McDade, Nina Pop and all the other black trans people killed. Tony McDade was shot and killed by the police on May 27. At the time, LGBT+ equality organisation Basic Rights Oregon shared on social media, “Tony’s death brings national scrutiny and is a stark reminder of the epidemic of violence that disproportionately claims the lives of black transgender people in America.
“His death arrives as the country is roiled by the murder of George Floyd by law enforcement in Minneapolis and the police brutality that disproportionately targets communities of colour.”
Nina Pop was found stabbed to death in her apartment in early May, no suspects have as yet been apprehended.
The protests come at a time when people across the US and the world have taken to the streets in force to support #BlackLivesMatter and demand justice for George Floyd.
– @FreeActorvist outside of stonewall tonight #BLACKTRANSLIVESMATTER pic.twitter.com/9rGHIrgNJL
— Marti Gould Cummings (@MartiGCummings) June 1, 2020
During the rally, trans activist Ianne Fields Stewart was recorded speaking to those gathered. She referred to the lip service of supposed trans support which hasn’t seemed to materialise.
She said, “Black trans women have given y’all culture. Have given y’all style. Have given y’all seasoning in your damn chicken! And for too long, we’re not here.
“You say you honour us. You say you uplift us. Then where the fuck are we?”
To honor #NinaPop, #TonyMcDade, and the many Black Trans people who been murdered by state-sanctioned violence, @TheOkraProject is dedicating $15,000 to create the Nina Pop Mental Health Recovery Fund and the Tony McDade Mental Health Recovery Fund. [THREAD]
— Ianne Thee Stewart (@FreeActorvist) May 31, 2020
Stewart also announced on social media a new Mental Health Recovery Fund named in honour of Pop and McDade. A press release described, “The Okra Project recognises that black trans people are feeling the weight of our siblings being murdered while their murderers, whether it be the assailants or the police force that puts very little efforts into finding their killers, walks free.”
The time and location of the rally could not have been more poignant, as the modern Pride movement has its roots in the Stonewall Uprising all those years ago and Pride month has just begun.
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