LGBTI people and allies have slammed a group of anti-trans lesbian protesters who hijacked Saturday’s Pride in London parade.
A group of trans-exclusionary radical feminists forced their way to the front of the march, and after negotiating with organisers were allowed to lead the parade for much of the route, according to Pink News.
They distributed flyers encouraging lesbian separation from the LGBTI community over “trans politics” and claims that butch lesbians are forced to transition to male.
The incident echoed this year’s Auckland Pride, where a small group of anti-trans protesters similarly forced their way to the front of the march.
After a large social media backlash criticising the anti-trans group at Pride in London, Mayor Sadiq Khan has also spoken out against their actions.
“Pride is about celebrating difference and London’s amazing LGBT+ community,” said a spokesperson for the mayor.
“It’s about showing those round the world that in our great city you can be free to be whoever you want to be and love whoever you want to love.
“The vast majority of those present at [the] march respected and embraced that and the mayor condemns the tiny minority who did not.
“Transphobia is never acceptable.”
Mayor Khan was meant to lead the parade, but spent much of the march stuck behind the transphobic protesters.
Liberal Democrats LGBT+ chair Jennie Rigg called for an apology from the event organisers.
“I am appalled that transphobic protesters were allowed to lead the march and the crowd asked to cheer them on,” she said.
“This is a betrayal of the thousands marching. The Pride organisers should resign and offer a full apology.”
Pride in London has distanced itself from the transphobic protesters, claiming the weather was a factor in allowing them to lead the march.
“Every year, Pride is attended by hundreds of thousands of people who demonstrate that Pride still matters,” said a spokesperson.
“Given the hot weather and in the interest of the safety for everyone attending today’s event, the parade group was allowed to move ahead.
“We do not condone their approach and message and hope the actions of a very small number people does not overshadow the messages of the 30,000 people marching today.”
For those wanting to know what the #GetTheLOut protest at Pride today was about? This is a flyer all about it. Hundreds were given out by lesbians leading at the front of #LondonPride. Happy reading! #Pride #IsAProtestAfterAll pic.twitter.com/OwWg9T70xz
— Jen Isaacson ☀️ (@isacsohn) July 7, 2018
terf lesbians at london pride claiming trans women are threatening their identity is the most ridiculous thing i’ve heard. a trans woman threw the first brick at stonewall that started the pride movement fuck off with your transphobia
— lil🏳️🌈 (@lilycarolinee) July 7, 2018
London Pride this year, first group to pass was TERFs with a “transactivism erases lesbians” banner. Almost got in trouble with police shouting at them to fuck off. Pride is a riot, and I won’t stand quietly while I’m told I’m not welcome at pride as a trans lesbian.
— Laura Kate Dale (@LaurakBuzz) July 7, 2018
The largest Pride in the country and they let transphobes lead it. Fuck London Pride. Its more interested in its corporate sponsors than it is the marginalised people that make it happen.
— Bi-Furious Smol ❤️💙💜💖 (@Damn_It_Dillon) July 7, 2018
Hi! I’m Goody RealcuntXX and my idea of a righteous campaign involves barging in front of LGBT NHS staff who were supposed to lead London Pride in honour of it’s 70th birthday, in order to hate on a vulnerable LGBT minority. I simply don’t understand why we’re so unpopular!
— Rosie Swayne (@Invocal) July 7, 2018
The shameful behaviour of some TERF activists at #LondonPride is not in my name. I’m a cis lesbian. Trans women are women. Trans women don’t share all my experiences and i don’t share all theirs but we have much in common and my feminism includes all women.
— Dr Sophie Duncan (@clamorousvoice) July 7, 2018