How do we fight back?

In just the last few weeks here in San Diego, a gay Lyft driver was brutally assaulted by his passengers and an LGBTQ-supportive church in the heart of Hillcrest was vandalized—both bold anti-LGBTQ attacks. This comes at a time when residents, patrons, and business owners in the Hillcrest area are reporting an increase in hate speech, threats, and violence towards our community. These terrifying realities coincide with a national increase in violence towards the LGBTQ and other minority communities.

This week, the New York Times reported that the Trump administration is considering drastic changes to the way our government defines gender that would severely impact our transgender, intersex, and gender nonconforming community members. This has left many in our community shaken but resolved to fight back.

It is imperative that each of us stand with and support our transgender, intersex, and gender nonconforming siblings. This Friday our community is holding a Won’t Be Erased Teach-In, and on Saturday will be having a Won’t Be Erased March and Rally. We hope you will join us!

We also know that an important election is upon us, and one of the most important and strategic things we can do to ensure that our community has a voice is to show up to the polls. We know that marginalized populations and young people historically show up to the polls less often than their counterparts. Let’s change that. There are still opportunities to help our community show up to the poll by participating in our nonpartisan Get Out The Vote effort.

Spending this last week talking to many in our community, I understand how scared many of us are. We are absolutely fortunate to live in San Diego and California where we are surrounded by support, yet we must remain vigilant for our safety and active in the struggle for equality. It is together in this fight that we will leave a legacy of a better world for the next generation, and together that we will Persist With Pride.

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About Fernando

Fernando Lopez is the Executive Director of San Diego Pride. Lopez’s years of LGBT advocacy, nonprofit management, public education, diversity consulting, media relations, guest lectures, and organizing have made him a consistent presence ensuring the struggles of the LGBT community are ever visible.