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$ PRIDE $ (and why I don’t think cops belong there)

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Am I introducing Pride merch like a god damn conglomerate? You’re 100% right. If Lego can cash in, so can I. Except, when LGBTQA+ creators do it, it’s like when you hand money to the dude in the sleeping bag on the sidewalk instead of the dude ringing the bell to get money to run through the hands of the CEO before making the dude in the sleeping bag sit through a gospel reading to get a bowl of oatmeal and a roll of toilet paper.

Moving on.

Before I shamelessly hawk my wears, let me explain this shit like a fucking recipe blog.

I don’t think cops should be a presence at Pride. Not just because cops routinely raided gay bars and checked people’s genitals and counted how many pieces of “gender appropriate” clothing they were wearing and beat them and outed them and humiliated them etc. until Marsha fucking snapped and chucked that brick, but also because of how the police have weaponized their presence to prevent events and protests from even happening. Cities have tried to use, “but you have to pay for the police to protect you!” as an excuse to withhold permits and contracts from event organizers who couldn’t raise the funds. And “protection” from police at Pride has sometimes meant open harassment and violence against the people paying for their protection in the first place.

Just because marriage equality passed in the United States doesn’t mean LGBTQA+ people are safe and all our problems have been solved. We’re still considered “less-dead” in criminology terms: victims more vulnerable to becoming cold cases due to marginalized status.

The situation is somewhat similar to what happens to Black Lives Matter protests: Pay us to protect you at the protests you organize in remembrance of how we, specifically, have historically victimized you. Oh, and while we’re here, why not let us make you feel incredibly unsafe.

In the United States, there’s a flag that’s become a popular substitute for the traitor (confederate) flag. It’s a version of the American flag in black and white. One stripe is blue, to signify the “thin blue line,” the mythical concept that without the police to brutalize citizens, the workers will undermine the fruits of their labor or something dystopian like that.

In my area, they usually fly just above “Trump 2024” or “Fuck Biden” MAGA flags.

I fucking hate them.

Like, whenever I hear a firetruck, I fantasize that it’s one of those houses.

So, as with many, many things in my life, I was motivated by spite to make a flag for LGBTQA+ Americans who don’t want cops at Pride, based on the bootlicker flag:

The "No Cops At Pride" flag is based off the American flag, but with rainbow stripes and the gray asexual flag stripe instead of red ones. The field of stars is black, with NO COPS in block letters in the pink and blue of the transgender flag.

This image file is huge, by the way, so that you can use it on what you want. Put it in your Cricut machine and make stickers and sell ’em on etsy. Make it a real flag, I don’t care. Put it on your FB, print it out and write love letters on it, whatever blows your skirt up. Monetize it. Get that cash, gaybies.

What I’m not cool with would be if someone not a member of the LGBTQA+ community decided to be an ally by making money off it. Or a corporation. That would disappoint me and I would lose respect for that person or entity. But I want it to be available for everyone so I’m not gonna copyright it or anything.

But I’m gonna sell merch!

Over at TroutMartyou can find this design, as well as a limited edition, super gayed-out version of our favorite misogynistic insult that will only be available during the month of June.

Giving queer people money is allyship, right?

Anyway, a very merry Pride to you, remember the people who died so you could watch cis straight actors pretend to be them in the biopic.

No Cops At Pride.

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  1. Sam B
    Sam B

    Well, considering that most corporations have Pride merchandise just to make money and don’t actually want to rock the boat, I’m positive none of them will try to take something that could come off as anti-cop. Same with most straight allies.

    June 2, 2021
  2. Emily Barnard
    Emily Barnard

    After attending Pride in multiple cities since the early 90s, I’m beginning to feel the same about religious “leaders” and organizations, especially in vestments. Yes, I’ve been there when usually-United Methodist pastors with a few stray non-trad Catholics either march in the parades or offer prayer and services. I know hashtag-not-all-religious-people. But I also saw rights stripped away from gay citizens in CA thanks to the combined efforts of the Mormon* church nationally, and Black congregations in Los Angeles, both notoriously homophobic. After the last decades where Christianity has been weaponized to take rights away from LGBTQ+ people, and to literally destroy them if they don’t conform, I think it’s time for religious leaders and participants to go back to their own congregations and parishes and do some work there. Maybe hosting their own specific Christian Pride and Protection for LGBTQ+ Americans would do more good for a while?

    June 2, 2021
    • Emily Barnard
      Emily Barnard

      *My family is Mormon. I still don’t know if they know I was one of the people outside their Temple, protesting.

      June 2, 2021
    • Mikey

      Just to be clear: When you say “religious leaders and organization,” do you mean specifically Christian ones? Because you’re only mentioning those.

      (I PROMISE I’m not trying to make this into a “gotcha!” or something like that. I’m just want to make sure I’m not misinterpreting anything.)

      June 4, 2021
      • Al

        I was actually about to say — Christianity isn’t all of religion. You’ve raised really valid points, but there’s no reason to be opposed to Hinduists or Buddhists at Pride.

        June 18, 2021
  3. Jane Doe
    Jane Doe

    I just want to say thanks for not forgetting the “A”. I mean I figure the “+” probably also includes asexuals, but then again, who knows. Anyway, just wanted to say thanks for that.

    June 4, 2021
  4. Regret

    I think there are some copyright alternatives that prevent others from copyrighting your idea without limiting who can use it how. I think they are called creative commons or copyleft, but I’m far from an expert.

    June 10, 2021

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