By Victoria McNally via SWNS
Over 80% of potential Pride-goers say hate won’t derail their plans this year.
This comes from a recent OnePoll survey of 1,000 U.S. residents, 81% of whom agreed that LGBTQ people should be able to attend Pride events without fear of verbal assault.
“I think all groups should be able to meet peacefully without being harassed. We are not supposed to judge other people,” said one respondent.
Although not federally recognized until 30 years after its inception, Pride Month honors the anniversary of the 1969 Stonewall Uprisings with marches, parties, memorials and continued civil rights activism in support of LGBTQ (gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer) Americans.
Although the majority of respondents (61%) did not openly identify as allies or members of the community themselves, 64% have participated in at least one activity or event related to LGBTQ culture.
Twenty percent have attended a past Pride event, and 41% have watched TV shows related to LGBTQ culture, such as “RuPaul’s Drag Race” or “Queer Eye.”
One in three (34%) also feel likely to attend Pride — but a similar percentage of respondents (33%) are highly concerned that events in their area will be disrupted by anti-LGBTQ rhetoric.
In fact, several such incidents have already occurred in 2022.
Per the Los Angeles Times, a recent Drag Queen Story Hour event in Oakland was disrupted by five men aligned with a far-right extremist group, who reportedly yelled slurs at guests in attendance.
That same day, 31 masked members of a white nationalist organization were arrested in Couer D’Alane, Idaho, on suspicions of conspiring to riot at a Pride in the Park event.
Law enforcement also found a truck containing riot gear and at least one smoke grenade at the scene, according to local officials.
But while the majority of Pride-bound respondents (40%) said that these incidents haven’t affected their plans, nearly as many (39%) admitted that the potential for discrimination has actually made them more interested in going, not less.
“I have the right to go to these events and live proudly,” one respondent noted. “I will keep doing this as long as it takes for change. "
“No one will become gay from going to a drag show,” said another. “I’ve been to many and I’m still very straight.”
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