Every June, corporations unabashedly participate in rainbow capitalism by putting out rainbow logos and pride product lines without taking any meaningful action to support LGBTQ+ causes. We have grown quick to call out such corporations for their performativity, so why don’t we call out other forms of rainbow-washed oppression — especially when it comes to justifying the mass murder of an entire populace?
Picture this: it’s June 28, 1970, nearly a year after the monumental Stonewall riots, and you’re attending the first Pride Parade in New York City. Except it’s not a parade, and it’s not entirely about Pride: it’s the Christopher Street Liberation Day March. Here, we recognize the familiar names of Marsha P. Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, Miss Major Griffin-Gracy, and the lesser known names of the march’s organizers Craig Rodwell, Fred Sargeant, Ellen Broidy, Linda Rhodes, Brenda Howard and many more. Unlike today’s Pride Parade, this march in New York was dedicated to Gay Liberation in the forms of political speeches, demonstrations, and gay visibility.
“What do you mean they’re out of stock in all sizes? I’m wearing it,” I grumbled from the confines of a Target fitting room. My girlfriend was trying to find me a different size of the bright green Pride jumpsuit that has circulated TikTok, but, as we looked for more of the Pride collection items in different sizes, it became evident that many weren’t available online for pickup, delivery or shipping, despite being available in very small quantities in Westwood’s City Target.