These intersections came up last night, at the membership meeting I helped lead for Community United Against Violence (CUAV). We practiced skills like active listening and speaking authentically, to speak and honor our truths and let one another be heard.
We also reported back from the “Secure” Communities campaign, and last week’s rally for immigrant rights. Performing at the rally was a rich experience, helping quench my thirst for pouring my words into spaces where they can be held as part of a movement. Another performer, Xago from headRush, held it down with street performance that I was proud to follow. Also, being there as a member of CUAV, I was glad to speak up for queer and trans folks against violence.
While I know the connection may not be clear to everyone, I was a little disappointed when one of the rally’s participants approached one of CUAV’s staff people to ask, essentially, a question that would make anyone bristle: “What are you people doing here?”
Okay, so she didn’t say it in so many words, but she was asking what queer and trans folks have to do with immigrant rights. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, since we’re so often dismissed and forgotten, in spite of the fact that queer people are everywhere. Queer people are immigrants too, and when poor immigration policies are hurting communities, you can imagine how much harm they cause to queer and trans people whose identities are devalued on many levels. We belong in this fight, to speak up for ourselves and our brothers and sisters, and also to show solidarity, to show that we stand for human rights for all people, and we won’t stand for violence against any of us.
To anyone involved in any movement, I’d say don’t dismiss us or power we can bring to your fight. We’re here, and we won’t be forgotten. And I think we all know that uniting, not dividing, is the only way to reach our shared vision of justice.
In other news, I’m really wanting to put more creative work on here – poetry, fiction, videos of performances and other media. There’s only so much I can ramble on about creative arts – the work speaks for itself.
So you can look forward to that. Here’s a start, a video from Saturday’s Lit Crawl reading. I highly recommend clicking here for the other readings – I certainly wasn’t all there was to see.