Queer liberationists take on Bush’s war machine!

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Congratulations to the Melbourne Pride March organisers for moving beyond party themes, choosing the more political “Peace through Pride.” Adopted by InterPride, the international body for Pride March organisations, this theme is a reminder that queers don’t exist in a bubble.

Jerusalem’s first Pride march last year rallied for “Love without Borders.” In an inspiring example of pride and defiance, Jews and the few Arabs who got through the checkpoints marched together for gay rights, peace, and justice for Palestinians. The brave queers in Jerusalem and their counterparts, from Poland to Zimbabwe, are role models and heroes. If they can put up a fight under such extreme conditions, surely we can do it here!

Pride is the ideal day for everyone who cares about liberation to show solidarity with queers of all countries and flaunt our contempt for George Bush’s warmongering. Bush tries to convince us that the U.S. is fighting for democracy and liberating women. But just look at his allies: Saudi Arabia, a monarchy, where women are not allowed to drive or go outdoors unescorted; Pakistan, a dictatorship, where homosexuality is punishable by death; and Colombia, where U.S.-funded soldiers and paramilitary death squads assassinate more unionists than anywhere in the world.

Pride is also a great opportunity for queers to make common cause with Arabs, Indonesians and other immigrants who are being scapegoated. Gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered folks know what it is like to be attacked on the street simply for who they are, or to be targeted by governments for “legal” discrimination and abuse and to suffer witchhunts and media hysteria. History must not be repeated.

Calling queer liberationists of all sexual preferences. The “war against terrorism” is an armed offensive to protect capitalism. It’s time to say “Not in our names!” Glam up at 5 pm on February 2nd, to cavort down Fitzroy Street, St Kilda chanting “We’re here, we’re queer and we’re taking on the war machine!”

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