The Darker Side of Pride Weekend ; This Weekend on “Out”.

by on Sep.04, 2012, under Uncategorized

Pride 2012 has been repor­ted as a smash­ing suc­cess, with tens of thou­sands vis­it­ing the city for the week­end, and some of them shelling out for tick­ets and vis­it­ing the event in Pre­ston Park. It was col­our­ful, it was loud, and it was cer­tainly a party atmo­sphere across the city.

But what hasn’t been repor­ted quite so widely in the media is the other side of the Pride week­end. Sus­sex Police repor­ted 47 arrests had been made, and con­sid­er­ing the level of the cel­eb­ra­tions, maybe this isn’t a shock. Passed out drunk people lined the streets at times, but this isn’t that new for Brighton on a busy week­end as we all know. More of a shock was the attemp­ted polit­ical silen­cing and cen­sor­ship of the Pride Parade itself. Pre­vi­ously the most polit­ical part of the week­end this 2012’s parade saw heavy handed poli­cing and sneaky tac­tics on behalf of the organ­isers (now, of course, a private com­pany run by the mono­pol­istic cabal who own the major­ity of the “gay scene” and it’s only media out­let), designed to intim­id­ate and silence a small group of activist.

With pride of place being given over to the floats of Nan­dos and the Co-Op, you may have missed the small walk­ing group shunted to the back of the parade and sur­roun­ded on all sides by police. They called them­selves Queers Against the Cuts and were march­ing to high­light the impact of the government’s cuts to wel­fare, edu­ca­tion et al, and to draw atten­tion to a oft over­looked part of the LGBTQ com­munity, the home­less, and the danger the new squat­ting laws will be pla­cing them in. They had registered with Pride and planned to march peace­fully to the park and then disperse.

But when they showed up on the day things were slightly dif­fer­ent to what had been planned…

Join me, Form­al­de­hyde, as I talk to Beth, one of the main organ­isers of the group about the har­rass­ment they faced by the police and the organ­isers, why it happened the way it did, and how this impacts on Pride both here in Brighton and nation wide this Sat­urday on Out at 8.30pm. Will be a mix­cloud link too as soon as possible.

And find out more about what happened here (Gscene), and here (social­ist party and joint organ­isers of group)

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