August 10, 2018 at 6:05 pm EDT | by Lou Chibbaro Jr.
LGBT counter protesters delay release of location for ‘#ResisDance’
dance protest, Unite the Right, WERK for Peace, gay news, Washington Blade, ResistDance

LGBT activists have used dance protests to counter Trump. This weekend, a group is planning a similar protest to counter the Unite the Right 2 rally. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

UPDATE: Organizers of the LGBT ResistDance plan to gather Sunday, Aug. 12 at 2:30 p.m. inside Dupont Circle.

Organizers of a contingent of LGBT activists planning to hold a “queer and trans” dance party counter protest near the White House on Sunday to confront participants in a Unite the Right Rally organized by white supremacist leaders said they won’t disclose the starting point and the route of their action until Sunday morning.

A group calling itself ResisDance Media, the lead organizer of the LGBT counter protest, issued a statement on Friday saying that for “safety concerns” they were withholding the exact time and place they will assemble and the route they plan to walk along D.C. streets until Sunday morning, other than to say their action will take place Sunday afternoon.

“D.C. trans and queer community members will hold a massive #ResisDance on August 12 as a counter protest to the Unite the Right II rally,” the statement says. “The event will feature lots of raging trans and queer dancers, rainbow biodegradable confetti, bumpin’ beats, and fabulousness,” according to the statement.

In a Facebook posting the group added, “While Nazis and white supremacists spread an ideology of racism and genocide, we are here to fiercely and unapologetically celebrate our communities and our existence – and of course drown them out with bumpin’ beats and lots of rainbow biodegradable confetti!”

Among those saying they will participate in the LGBT counter protest is Sarah Massey, director of communications for the National LGBTQ Task Force and other Task Force members.

Organizers of the Unite the Right rally have said they plan to hold the rally at Lafayette Square across the street from the White House from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

D.C. Police Chief Peter Newsham said at a news conference on Thursday that D.C. and U.S. Park Police would be present in large numbers at the rally and would separate an expected 400 rally participants from as many as 1,000 counter protesters expected to descend on Lafayette Square.

Among the LGBT contingents’ organizers is local gay activist Firas Nasr, who has organized LGBT dance party protests over the past two years, including two such protests outside the Trump International Hotel to protest policies of President Donald Trump.

Nasr told the Washington Blade that the dance protest will include an informal march through the streets with portable loud speakers playing dance music.

In a separate statement released on Friday, the Human Rights Campaign, the nation’s largest LGBT civil rights organization, announced it and its sister educational organization, the Human Rights Foundation, would respond to the Unite the Right rally through a series of digital events, including a Twitter campaign to repudiate white supremacist views expected to be expressed at the Unite the Right event.

The HRC statement said that among its planned activities for this weekend was to join the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and other civil rights groups in a “Twitter storm” utilizing the hashtag #AgainstHate.

“Today, we believe it is as important as ever for the LGBTQ community to loudly declare that the fight for racial justice and equity is inextricably bound to our fight for full equality,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “We must use our voices, our power and our energy to be good allies, fight white supremacy and be united against hate in all of its forms,” Griffin said in a statement.

In its own statement, the National LGBTQ Task Force said its stands in full solidarity with the groups targeted by white supremacists and others involved with the Unite the Right Rally on Sunday.

“The Task Force wholeheartedly resists those seeking to erase, eliminate or evict anyone who is Black, Jewish, Muslim, nonwhite, immigrant, LGBTQ, or otherwise marginalized individuals living in today’s society,” the group said in its statement.

Lou Chibbaro Jr. has reported on the LGBT civil rights movement and the LGBT community for more than 30 years, beginning as a freelance writer and later as a staff reporter and currently as Senior News Reporter for the Washington Blade. He has chronicled LGBT-related developments as they have touched on a wide range of social, religious, and governmental institutions, including the White House, Congress, the U.S. Supreme Court, the military, local and national law enforcement agencies and the Catholic Church. Chibbaro has reported on LGBT issues and LGBT participation in local and national elections since 1976. He has covered the AIDS epidemic since it first surfaced in the early 1980s. Follow Lou

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