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Graphic by Kelly Campbell
Graphic by Kelly Campbell

Pride in New York City Honors the Black Lives Matter Movement.

June 28 celebrates 50 years since the first pride parade, this year, honoring the Black Lives Matter Movement.

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Even though the Pride Parade was canceled this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, people still celebrated, and used the time to honor the Black Lives Matter Movement. 

While the commemoration was held virtually, that did not stop LGBTQ+ allies from taking to the streets in New York City to protest police brutality in the wake of the George Floyd killings in Minneapolis on May 25. 

There were less people than normal at what would have been Pride, and people were masked, practicing social distancing, but it made waves in any case. 

 

Foley Square began the march with signs that read: “Black Lives Matter,” alongside rainbow flags being waved in the air. The Queer Liberation March for Black Lives and police brutality was its name and its organizers were the Reclaim Pride Coalition

Simultaneously, hosts of the live-streamed event Carson Kressley and Sam Champion introduced live shots of the protest as well as singers like Janelle Monáe performed for the virtual audience. 

Two communities that intertwine came out to show support of one another, and fight a common denominator: law enforcement and their history of assault.

However, it was not long before cops on Sunday started to pepper spray and arrest people because they were graffiting.

Multiple videos surfaced where cops can be seen shoving the protestors to get through the crowd. The protest that went from lower Manhattan to the Stonewall Inn, a historical monument for the LGBTQ community as it is the location of the event that led to the gay liberation movement. From there, the activists rallied at Washington Square Park. 

"They pushed everyone in front of them out of the way and onto the ground. They pushed a reporter who was taking photos down and started randomly pepper spraying people. I couldn't see anyone instigating. It seemed like they felt out numbered after entering a huge group and panicked and started beating people up," Mike Perles, an attendant of the march told Gothamist.

Because of the turmoil that ensued, the live-stream event was cut short.

A day that is commemorated for the LGBTQ community, and a day that honored the Black Lives Matter Movement was once again soiled by the same people the demonstration was about: law enforcement and the oppression they represent.

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