With some steps forward have also come some enormous leaps backwards within the LGBT community in countries such as Russia.
By now I’m assuming you’ve all heard the news; our brothers and sisters across the world are in serious trouble. We’re not talking minor infractions here either… really, we’re not.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like for your entire country to tell you that everything you are is wrong? That your existence and audacious ability to continue breathing is an affront to God / the Justice System / the Holy word of blah blah blah…? Or what about having strangers applaud your debasement openly in the street?
This is the daily reality for the LGBTIQ citizens of countries as vastly different as Russia (http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/11/russia-law-banning-gay-propaganda), Belarus (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/02/15/gays-in-belarus-face-repr_0_n_2697873.html) and Greece (http://www.bilerico.com/2013/06/police_in_greece_victimizing_trans_persons.php ). African and Middle-Eastern nations such as Uganda, Iran, Iraq, Afghanistan and Turkey (to name but a few) are countries whose goverments have all taken steps to either marginalise or silence the community. Our own government has even deported asylum seekers; men, women and those of differing gender identities who face brutality, imprisonment and even death upon arrival in their countries of origin, in spite of overwhelming outcry and support from lobbying groups.
In some of these cases it has been a steady decline, for others it has been sharp and brutal. The lens of conservative repression and aggressive fundamentalism has focused on our community and without your help, our friends, our brothers and our sisters in foreign lands will be silenced.
There is a time and place for action, there is a moment and a galvanising force that unites us and tears down our rivalries, our petty internal struggles that serve only to diminish our strength.Isn’t it funny, thinking of yourself or the community as strong, as anything but divided? Well guess what, WE ARE! That’s the real catch here – when we agree to stand with one another and demand our rights, our visibility and freedom we are not only strong, we are FUCKING TERRIFYING!
Welcome to FREE TO FIGHT!
Named after the CD compilation by CandyAss Records that championed self-defence classes for women and shared experience of violence against the feminist community, ‘Free To Fight’ is an upcoming multi-disciplined performance spectacular featuring the talents of a whole host of performers and DJs all in aid of the Russian LGBT network affiliates ‘Coming Out’ who are currently struggling to come up with the legal fees to support its campaign workers.
I cannot stress how important it is to support this cause! All money from this event will go directly to ‘Coming Out’ and we even have some super amazing special surprises that will be unveiled closer to the event which will provide a few lucky people with a limited edition reminder of the evenings’ proceedings, sure to illuminate any space within your lovely houses!
The performers we have lined up for you are AMAZING! Can we just take a moment to appreciate them please:
Pariah Circus, Tuesday Laveau, Tiger Tiger, Screaming Keating, Violet Vayne, Ally Katte and Great Scott are all LEGENDARY!
They’re donating their sparklingly wonderful faces for your viewing pleasure and promise to shake more tail feather and throw so much rock ‘n’ roll attitude your way, you’ll wonder what the hell has hit you!
There will be space to write your own messages to your local MPs that we will happily post on your behalf to lobby for equal rights in Russia. If we can get as much political support as possible then we can turn the tides and ensure that something will be done, that our voices will be heard and our community supported.
It’s time to take some power back, to stand up, to make a difference and to make the ground tremble. We can make a difference but only together!
Join us and declare yourself FREE TO FIGHT!
Click here to visit ‘Coming Out’ – The St. Petersburg LGBT Association
On FaceBook? Click here to confirm your attendance at Freedom to Fight at the QueenShilling