As David Bruinooge, a 42 year-old Brooklyn resident, watched the Women’s March on Washington on the news last weekend, he felt inspired to keep the momentum going by organizing a National Pride March for LGBTQ equality this June. The Women’s March on Washington drew over 1 million people to peacefully protest in D.C. on Trump’s first day in office. Women’s Marches in sister cities around the nation (and the entire world: over 5 million marched globally) made the combined events the largest protest in U.S. history. Bruinooge hopes to build as much support for an LGBTQ rights march.
Initial support for the march quickly went viral on Facebook, much like the original plans for the Women’s March on Washington. Bruinooge has committed to work with the Capital Pride Alliance, the group that plans the yearly Pride March and Festival in D.C. With this in mind, the date for the march will coincide with the city’s annual LGBTQ celebrations from June 8 to 11. Bruinooge set the date for June 11, with plans to join the Capital Pride Festival, scheduled to commence on Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. near the Capitol building. He hopes the march will help drive business for local LGBTQ friendly vendors at the festival.
“My intention was never to undermine what was going on with D.C. Pride,” Bruinooge told the Washington Blade. “They obviously have the infrastructure and the mass support to help this become a reality.”
Executive Director of Capital Pride Alliance Ryan Bos has already reached out to Burinooge to discuss details on how the two organizers can collaborate, according the Blade. He told Bruinooge he believes the two events have the potential to complement each other.
The National Pride March Facebook page encouraged supporters possibly unable to make it to D.C. in June to “reach out to your local Pride organizations to assist in creating solidarity through your existing Pride events. Let’s make this truly a ‘National Pride March’ that spreads from coast to coast and shows solidarity through our Pride movement.”
This overwhelming support for LGBTQ and women’s rights only further emphasizes just how ready Americans are to take measurable action against the new government’s planned stripping of their basic civil liberties. Marginalized communities in particular seem increasingly motivated to fight back against the current administration’s anti-LGBTQ agenda, which probably inspired an alarming decision by the Texas Supreme Court to hear a case that could undermine federal marriage equality at the state level (and possibly set precedent for other states to legally attack same-sex marriage). Human rights advocates also malign signals by the Trump administration that it will attempt to push through the atrocious so-called “First Amendment Defense Act,” which would limit basic rights such as employee discrimination protections.
The Women’s March organizers continue to follow up with participants in hopes of maintaining momentum and promoting actionable change against some of Trump’s most harmful proposed (and already enacted) policies. We hope that the National Pride March will do the same by encouraging Americans from all walks of life to get involved in the fight for LGBTQ rights.
Missed the Marches? Check out GO’s extensive photo galleries of inspiring images from the Women’s March on Washington and sister cities: