A group of No Justice No Pride protestors appeared at the Capital Pride parade in Washington Saturday in both a march of their own and a stand-off/blockade that resulted in the Capital Pride parade being re-routed and significantly delayed.
About 3:30 p.m., a couple hundred No Justice No Pride protestors were accompanied by pop hits by Beyonce, Lady Gaga, et. al. blasting from a loudspeaker as the marchers chanted anti-corporate slogans.
Later, another group of No Justice No Pride activists joined hands with a chain-like material on P Street between 15th and 16th streets, N.W., in the planned route of the Pride parade. Ten protestors were in the chain with several other activists surrounding them. On one end, a woman chained herself to a fence; on the other end of the chain, another activist chained herself to a parked vehicle. They chanted slogans and clashed vehemently with several bystanders. Police set up a boxed perimeter and informed members of the press and others to remain outside. Interactions came close to fisticuffs a few times but as far as the Blade reporters could tell, no violence ensued.
Protestors had several concerns, which they distributed on pink sheets and read from. Among them, they demanded that Capital Pride:
• honor the legacy that trans women of color played in the history of Pride by adding more transgender women of color in leadership positions
• more stringently vet which corporations serve as sponsors of Capital Pride
• prevent uniformed police officers, including the LGBT Liaison Unit of D.C. Metropolitan Police Department and military personnel from participating in the parade
See the attached photos for a full list of their demands, which are also available at nojusticenopride.org.
Capital Pride Executive Director Ryan Bos and Treasurer Ashley Smith consulted with police on the best way to proceed. The parade was re-routed and delayed by about 90 minutes.
Following a few more minutes of chanting and listing demands, the activists went down the street to conclude their protest with a rally. No arrests were made.
“We deserve to celebrate Pride without being forced alongside the Police who kill us,” said Angela Peoples, one of the participants, in a No Justice No Pride statement. “Pride should be a haven for the entire LGBTQ community. The Capital Pride Board has shown who it’s prioritizing. No Justice No Pride is for everyone who has previously been excluded and for a different vision of what this event could and should be.”
The Blade will have more later on this unfolding story.