Charlotte Pride demands the repeal of HB2, mourns the losses of Orlando and calls for immigration reform
On June 23, 2016, the Charlotte Pride, Inc., Board of Directors unanimously passed its annual Stonewall Resolution commemorating the Stonewall Riots of 1969.
Each year’s Stonewall Resolution offers Charlotte Pride the opportunity to mark the history which catapulted the modern LGBTQ rights movement into mainstream consciousness and to weigh in on important matters of current public dialogue.
The LGBTQ community in Charlotte and North Carolina have been been faced with a daunting challenge following the passage of HB2, anti-LGBTQ legislation targeting our community and other minorities. In this annual Stonewall Resolution, Charlotte Pride demands the full repeal of HB2 and all other anti-LGBTQ laws at home and abroad. Additionally, the tragedy of June 12, 2016, in Orlando, Fla., has given new focus to the magnitude of anti-LGBTQ violence and discrimination in the U.S. and across the globe.
On the same day the Charlotte Pride board gathered to consider the annual Stonewall Resolution, our own U.S. Supreme Court found itself split on another vitally important issue which affects our LGBTQ siblings. A split 4-4 decision from the Supreme Court effectively blocked President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and expanded Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA+) programs. More than five million undocumented immigrants had been eligible for these programs, which offered safety and security for marginalized members of our communities, including a disproportionate number of LGBTQ people of color. These programs offered work authorization, eligibility for identification and drivers licenses, the ability to pursue higher education, and access to certain health care programs.
LGBTQ young people, in particular, have taken leading roles in the movement for safety and security of undocumented immigrants living in the U.S. Their presence has been felt across the nation, whether marching under an “UndocuQueer” banner in Charlotte Pride’s first LGBTQ Pride parade in nearly 20 years in 2013 or in protests in cities and towns across the nation and even at the White House.
In response to the Supreme Court decision, the Charlotte Pride released the following statement:
“We are stronger when we are together.” The LGBTQ community knows the meaning of this sentiment. Across every divide of race, age, class, ethnicity, ability, gender, socioeconomic status and more, the LGBTQ community has stood strong for our own and our allies. It is a ideal our nation has sadly forgotten when considering the hopes, dreams and aspirations of the millions of undocumented immigrants who, along with their families, call the United States their home. On June 23, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court effectively blocked programs which would have provided for the safety and security of millions of undocumented immigrants — among whom many disproportionately identify as LGBTQ and as people of color. Charlotte Pride recognizes that none of us are equal until all of us are equal — none of us are safe, secure, welcome or included, until all of us are. Our nation must find an immediate path forward on meaningful immigration reform which guarantees the safety, security and inclusion of all undocumented immigrants, including members of our own LGBTQ community. The Supreme Court decision on June 23 — coinciding with the passage of Charlotte Pride’s annual Stonewall Resolution — is but another in a long list of reasons why the work of our Liberation Movement and why the Spirit of Stonewall still has so much to accomplish. It is a reminder of the long journey our nation and world must still travel before each of us truly experiences equality and liberation.
The Charlotte Pride Board of Directors presents to the community our annual Stonewall Resolution.
COMMEMORATING THE STONEWALL RIOTS OF 1969, MOURNING THE TRAGEDY OF
PULSE ORLANDO, AND CALLING FOR THE REPEAL OF NORTH CAROLINA’S HB2
WHEREAS, On June 28, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn in New York City’s Greenwich Village, members of our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community took a nearly-unprecedented move against political, social, legal, and police oppression; and
WHEREAS, These community members — many of whom identified among the most oppressed in our community, including transgender people, the homeless, sex workers, youth, and people of color — summoned the courage and conviction to stand for the most timeless and cherished human values of freedom and liberation; and
WHEREAS, LGBTQ people across the United States first commemorated the Stonewall Riots with the first Christopher Street Liberation Day march on June 28, 1970, and each annual commemoration has thus inspired continued movement toward equality and inclusion, as well as the annual Pride festivals and parades celebrated across the globe each year today, including celebrations and commemorations in the City of Charlotte, North Carolina, this year on August 20 and 21, 2016; and
WHEREAS, The LGBTQ community and its allies continue to be targets for legal discrimination and oppression, including in North Carolina where the recent legislation HB2 was designed and passed to directly target members of the transgender community and the larger LGBTQ community, low-income earners, and other minorities after the City of Charlotte passed local LGBTQ-inclusive non-discrimination protections; and
WHEREAS, LGBTQ people also remain the target for violence, as evidenced recently by the tragedies of June 12, 2016, when an act of terror took the lives of 49 of our siblings and injured at least 50 others in the nightclub Pulse, located in the City of Orlando, Florida, the kind of place like the Stonewall Inn where our community nearly 50 years ago had once fought to retain as a safe haven against discrimination, abuse, and violence; and
WHEREAS, We are reminded today and in each passing day of the very real, physical harm which still threatens LGBTQ people at home and in hostile environs across the globe, and that legislation like HB2 creates a climate instilling fear and prejudice, resulting in increased anti-LGBTQ oppression and violence; and
WHEREAS, The Spirit of the Stonewall Riots of 1969, the resulting Liberation Movement, and the universal kinship of all humankind naturally calls each of us to a broader understanding of equality and compels us to speak out against unjust discrimination, oppression, and violence;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED: We, the members of the Board of Directors of Charlotte Pride, Inc., recommit ourselves to the timeless and cherished values of self-evident and universal equality which underpin our movement toward LGBTQ liberation, inspired our nation’s founding, and which continue to shape our evolving national conscience; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: We, in the Spirit of Stonewall, demand that the North Carolina General Assembly immediately and without compromise repeal HB2 and enact statewide statutes inclusive of sexual orientation and gender identity protecting against discrimination in public and private employment, housing, public accommodations, health care, hate crimes, and education; and
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: We call on all LGBTQ and ally people across our region to stand in solidarity with the LGBTQ community in Charlotte during our annual Charlotte Pride Festival and Parade, showing our strength and resilience in numbers as we celebrate our achievements, mourn those who have passed, and envision a world in which LGBTQ people are affirmed, respected, and included in the full social and civic life of their local communities, free from fear of any discrimination, rejection, and prejudice, and;
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED: We appeal to all people of goodwill in the City of Charlotte, this great State of North Carolina and in the United States of America and across the globe to join in prayer with the victims and families of the Pulse Orlando shootings and stand in solidarity with LGBTQ peoples worldwide to immediately and without haste repeal any and all anti-LGBTQ statutes and to enact full, complete, and uncompromising LGBTQ-inclusive non-discrimination and anti-violence statutes, ordinances and laws.
PASSED THIS TWENTY-THIRD DAY OF JUNE IN THE YEAR TWO THOUSAND SIXTEEN WITH THE UNANIMOUS CONSENT OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF CHARLOTTE PRIDE, INC.
Craig Hopkins, President
Daniel Valdez, Vice President
Abdul Green, Secretary
Richard Grimstad, Treasurer