This year has been unimaginably devastating. The losses our community and the world have endured from the global pandemic, police violence, and the ongoing epidemic level murder of our trans siblings have shaken us all to our core. The work we have ahead of us can seem too heavy to bear. Finding cause to celebrate or allow ourselves to lean into joy can also seem like an impossible task at times, but that is why we have Pride.
We don’t have Pride because we are free and equal. We have Pride because we are not. Sparked from a riot against legal and systemic violence and discrimination against our community, the Pride movement arose to bring our LGBTQ community together and combat the fear, shame, and oppression we faced and still face to this day.
If we are to create a more equal lived experience for us all, we must first create a more equitable world. We do that by stripping away the systemic barriers that prevent us from living in a truly equal society.
It is time to rebuild trust. Trust in each other. Trust in science. Trust in a nation whose promise of liberty and justice for all is yet unmet. Trust in ourselves to know what is right and just and fair.
Moments on our path will seem hard. They will be. They have been.
We cry out for justice now as we have before. Louder. Stronger. Powerful enough that people are ready to listen.
We spoke out in protest this year like never before. We raged and grieved and mourned and yelled our pain into the sky. Our protest is not done. Our work is not done. We will protest with our dollars. We will riot with our votes. We will march in the streets knocking doors for our future. We will lift our voices to the phones calling out for our dreams. We will fight with and for love.
Pride is not canceled. In-person mass gatherings are canceled. Nothing can strip away our pride. Nothing can deny us the pride our community has built inside ourselves, our community, and the broader world. We will still find ways to raise our Pride flags, celebrate the vibrancy of our community, and bring to light the issues that our movement still faces. We will pursue justice with joy, and at Pride, Together We Rise.
With Love, Hope, and Pride,
Fernando Zweifach López Pronouns: They/Them/Theirs Executive Director San Diego Pride
P.S. I hope you join us safely online this weekend as we uplift the voices, lives, stories, and talents of our beautifully diverse LGBTQ community.
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 them a consistent presence ensuring the struggles of the LGBT community are ever visible.