LGBTQ

Violence in Lewisham Momentum

Author

Mark Osborn

A further series of unpleasant attacks on left activists aligned with Workers’ Liberty took place at the Lewisham Momentum meeting held on Wednesday 14 August.

The most serious incident at this Momentum meeting was that Bill Jefferies of Ladywell ward, Lewisham Deptford CLP, physically attacked me. He hit me on the chin and grabbed my throat, in the hall outside the meeting room as the meeting was breaking up. He is 10cm taller and 40kg heavier than me.

I’m okay, as always. But my chin still hurts and there’s a mark on my neck.

Stonewall and the early days

Author

Ian Townson

The “Stonewall riots”, which began on 28 June 1969 in New York, marked the start of the modern lesbian and gay rights movement.

Leicester protest at Trump’s state visit

Author

Liz Yeates

Despite the rain and it being a weekday, roughly 100 people gathered at Leicester’s clock tower to protest the ridiculous state visit laid on for Donald Trump. There was a buoyant atmosphere and a diverse crowd — much like the previous Trump actions in Leicester, just a little smaller.

Ban is antisemitic

Author

Chris Reynolds

On 7 June, a lesbian pride march in Washington DC, the “DC Dyke March” banned marchers who had Stars of David on their rainbow flags. The organisers said that anti-Zionist Jews were welcome, and that they banned flags with Stars of David because they wanted to exclude all “nationalist” symbols.

Lots of people are nationalists of different shades. Why should they be banned from lesbian pride marches? And Palestinian flags weren’t banned. A similar ban was imposed at a pride march in Chicago in 2017. Root-and-branch anti-Israel politics inevitably spills over into antisemitism.

Bigots attack women on bus

Author

Charlotte Zalens

Two women travelling on the N31 night bus in Camden, north London, on 30 May were attacked and left injured in a homophobic and misogynist attack. Melania Geymonat and her partner Chris were harassed by a group of men who noticed they were a couple. The men demanded that they kiss for their entertainment, described sexual positions, and threw coins at them. When the couple did not go along with their demands the men beat them up, leaving Melania and Chris with facial injuries and covered in blood.

Letters

Defining people's oppressions?
I’m canvassing opinions on the call for marginalised groups of people to “define their own oppression”.

The LGBT+ organising group at the National Education Union conference argued for a definition of transphobia which I agreed with. It was however defeated on the basis that there are conflicting views on what constitutes transphobia and that the amendment was anti-woman.

SNP trans contradictions

Author

Heather Herbert

On 17 May, the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia, the SNP member of parliament Mhairi Black gave a fantastic speech calling for the reform of the Gender Recognition Act (GRA).

Unofficial protest in Cuba

Author

Simon Nelson

On 11 May, an unofficial Pride protest in Cuba was disrupted by the Cuban police, with some violence, and several activists were detained at the protest or in the run-up. Nevertheless, around 300 people, many of them young, joined the protest with slogans including “Viva gay marriage”, “A diverse Cuba”, and “Yes, we can.” It was the first time in many years that a civil society protest has gone ahead in Cuba without a permit.

A different PCS conference

The 2019 conference of PCS, the main civil service union, from 21-23 May in Brighton was the most open and interesting one in years. The great majority of motions on the Conference agenda were not controversial and nor should they be: the bulk of equality and terms and conditions motions should command support. However, on a number of issues the NEC found itself struggling to win over delegates.

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