As one of the first national Pride celebrations occurring after the passing of the “Don’t Say Gay” bill, in the very state that this law passed through legislature, we at the Miami Beach Pride organization cannot stay silent. We have fought many battles, as individuals and as a united front over decades of our history. When state legislature brings forth a bill as harmful as this, we cannot turn a blind eye to the detrimental effects this sweeping legislation will have on our community’s physical safety, mental health, suicide rates, and ripple effects yet to be seen.
We remain resolute in our responsibility to continue the work of the LGBTQIA+ leaders before us and advocate for the rights of our community’s safety and to protect the simple right of being acknowledged by not removing the word of “gay” from the vernacular of our teachers, children and leaders.
We strongly denounce this bill on the grotesque violation of basic human rights. We will continue to honor and celebrate our LGBTQIA+ community while vocally opposing the many tactics used to attack and silence us.
In his recent State of the Union address, the President declared, “as I said last year, especially to our younger transgender Americans, I will always have your back as your President, so you can be yourself and reach your God-given potential.” Yet, Florida has passed a bill that dehumanizes our youth, stifles parents, and punishes teachers for providing safe spaces for those that may be struggling. How are they to reach their potential in that environment? This kind of legislation promotes fear and oppression, and we want to be clear that we will continue to fight for protection and equal rights for our community. Our programming is curated with the intention to promote inclusivity, diversity, and education. We wish to hold our supporters accountable not just in dollars but in action as well to support all human beings.
We hope that you will continue to support your local LGBTQIA+ youth in being able to speak with their authentic voices. We are proud to share that our forthcoming Social Justice Event will consist of a panel of teachers, psychologists, parents, and a Miami Beach Pride Board member to openly discuss the impact of the, “Don’t Say Gay” bill. The word “GAY” will be used freely and with the passion and determination of a resilient community!