Keep Demonstrating but Stay Safe
Written by Oskar
June is a month devoted to LGBTQ+ activists known as the Pride Month that occurs all around the world. It is a month full of demonstrations and marches. These small but well-heard groups raise awareness about sexual equality and open-mindedness in the average citizen. These pride months spread love and care and they tend to have a positive message. Unfortunately, not everyone sees it this way.
On the day of June 9th 2021 a young gay man called David Gomez was brutally beaten up in Toronto at around 11:15pm by a group of homophobes who disliked him because of his sexuality. He was left unconscious on the streets near Hanlan’s Point. He woke the next morning with a broken nose, damaged hip, shattered orbital bone, a broken cheekbone and a concussion.
It is important that everyone knows about these disturbing events so that people can spread awareness about the safety of these minorities. There are a couple of necessary rules recommended to all the attendees at either demonstrations and/or marches for bigger safety measures.
Stay proud but follow these recommendations:
1. Don't tell people who you are not familiar with about your sexuality
- It is important to stay around a group of people that you can trust and that you are comfortable with. It is best if the groups you demonstrate with are close to you and tend to be peaceful and can solve problems with words rather than with fists.
2. If you see something suspicious or someone aggressive report it
- There are many different types of people that show up at marches and demonstrations who aren’t necessarily part of the LGBTQ+ community. In fact, there is a good chance you may run into someone that has negative intentions and might even be homophobic. These people can try to start small conflicts in order to create chaos and/or to find a good reason to get into a fight with an activist. It is best to report someone with suspicious behaviour to avoid a fight in the first place.
3. Never use any substances or recreational drugs while protesting
- It is very important your mind is focused so that your brain reacts quickly in any situation that might be uncomfortable for you. There is a better chance you will choose the correct option in order to get to safety during a conflict.
4. Charge your cell phone
- This might seem like common sense at first but there are many protestors that rely on their peer group too much. Having a full battery on your cell phone simply allows you to call for help when alone. Pride demonstrations are usually safe but as shown earlier homophobic conflicts happen and there is a higher chance of ending the conflict without getting hurt if help comes first.
All these rules work best together and it is fully recommended to listen to all of them. Following these rules lowers the chances of getting into a conflict during Pride month significantly. A priority even more important than raising awareness during these marches and demonstrations is staying safe and comfortable.
Youth.Gov. “June is LGBT Pride Month”
Gender Equality Law Center. “LGBT Discrimination”
Hello Giggles. “How to Safely Celebrate Pride Month”
Daily Hive. “Anti-gay Attack Hanla’s Point”