Uncompromising Love: Reimagining Pride and the World for Queer Black Women

Black Queer women are deserving of love, all the time, and can not be forgotten.
ZaneleChisholmZaneleChisholm
Jun. 18, 2020
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Cherie is an online community of beauty lovers sharing their stories; whether that's their favorite products, makeup tutorials, or skincare routines. Download the app today to be a part of #BeautyWithoutBarriers and show the world what beauty means to you! Over the past few weeks, a surge of Black Lives Matter protests has taken place across the globe. A reaction to the anti-black, racist systems that have plagued Black Americans withstate-sanctioned brutality for decades. The swell of mass demonstrations came, specifically, as a response to the death of George Floyd, 46-year-old a Black man who was unjustly killed by apolice officer, Derek Chauvin, in Minneapolis, Minnesota on May 25, 2020. Floyd’s deathtriggered uproar across the U.S, as well as in countries across the world, resulting in now ongoing rallies that last deep into the night. On March 13, 2020, Breonna Taylor, a 26 year-old-Black woman was shot to death by police in her home while she was sleeping. Taylor’s killing did not spark international outrage,her name circulated social media for a couple of days, and by the next week, the world movedon. For, Floyd the world has stopped. The striking contrast in the way love and outrage were offered immediately to George Floyd compared to Breonna Taylor is a violent and heart-wrenching example of what many Black women mean when we say that love, and who is deserving of it, has always been political. This is not to take away from the grief we all harbor for Floyd, every ounce of the anger expressed following his death is more than justified. I say all this to highlight the extra work it takes to get the world to love and care for Black women with equal capacity and without being begged to.
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Extra work, done by other Black women, that makes a two-month difference, sometimes years, sometimes a lifetime. Two weeks ago, this is not how I would have begun this article. But I cannot write Breonna Taylor out of a narrative that she so strongly belongs in. Nor can I escape the erasure of extreme and often fatal violence against Black trans women, who are fundamental to Queer rights as well as Black power. As a cornerstone of Pride, Black trans women like Marsha P. Johnson created space within the idea of love that allowed for Black women to be recognized as deserving. And the pride that exists today for Queer people could not exist without her and Black women like her.
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Reading about the stories of women like Nina Pop and Monika Diamond is a painful reminder of the second-class status continuously applied to the value of Black trans women’s lives. As a Queer Black woman, I cannot separate my pride from my sorrow for the Black women who are continuously brutalized and forgotten. I saw a tweet that quoted Shantira Jackson, a speaker from an LA protest for Breonna Taylor, who said “we measure love in the plans we make for someone’s life”. The past few weeks have been incredibly difficult, and they will continue to be as generations of people call for radical change. In the corners of my internet, and I hope yours, people are calling on us to think about the future. Waving signs that demand the defunding of police and the end of systemic oppression, people are asking us to imagine a future, a world without police. I’d like to ask that we, for Pride and for the future, widen the view. Imagine a world where Trans Black women, Queer Black Women, Black women are loved unrelentingly, fully, and while they are alive.
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I’ve shared the sorrows permanently embedded in my relationship with pride and blackness. And as marginalized folks, we are consistently expounding our traumas, so much so that sometimes it feels all-encompassing of our total experience. But my humanity is not chained to pain. There is so much beauty entwined in an identity that is constantly in the midst of a revolution. My greatest joy is the ability to reimagine the world again and again until love is allencompassing. I’d like to show you, through prose poetry, what my reimagined world looks like: A love that is on time. We frequent comfort in the cusp of each other’s hold. Happiness, a settled emotion in the pit of our stomachs, has been familiar for a while now. Our bodies, when seen, saunter the outside world with a presence that is innate. Our skin, brushed with the folds of dusk, interlocks with darkness to conceive a garden of wonder and discovery. There is potential in everything. Inside this home, each of our bodies creates life differently. Humanity transmitting with every touch. There are the legacies of every revolution in a kiss. A reminder of every world recreated. Black Women, in all our forms, crafting new realities that intersect the unshown with visibility. And grief. Grief a warm acquaintance of time and no longer a constant.RESEARCH/STUDIES ● http://aworldwithoutpolice.org/ ● https://time.com/5847396/france-protests-anti-racism/ ● https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/jun/05/defunding-the-police-us-what-does-itmean ● https://www.advocate.com/crime/2020/3/24/trans-businesswoman-shot-death-whilebeing-treated-ambulance ● https://www.advocate.com/crime/2020/5/06/trans-woman-nina-pop-stabbed-deathmissouri ● https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/27/us/transgender-women-deaths.html ● https://www.nytimes.com/article/breonna-taylor-police.html ● https://time.com/5847396/france-protests-anti-racism/ ● https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-52928304 ● Tweet Reference: https://twitter.com/asgharthegrouch/status/1269712657914847232
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