Yoav Sivan, a journalist and member of the Jewish Diplomatic Corps of the World Jewish Congress, gives guidelines to activists in the LGBT community who want to keep the all-important value of inclusiveness.
When a strong majority of Americans support LGBT equality, it takes a lot for a pride parade in any American city to cause a controversy, but the Chicago Dyke March, now in its 21st year, did exactly that in June. And it isn’t even the city’s official pride parade, for Dyke March organizers pride themselves on being outside of the mainstream, LGBT or otherwise.
The march nevertheless made it into the mainstream press after three participants carrying rainbow flags emblazoned with the Star of David were expelled from the event. Why? Because they were supporters of Israel.
The organizers acted in the name of comfort for any Palestinian participants and allies and in opposition to Zionism, which they call “an inherently white-supremacist ideology.”
Indeed, other than ostracizing Jewish participants, march organizers went to extraordinary lengths to make people from every walk of life feel comfortable.
The march invitation blared: “We challenge fatphobia and are body positive.”
Fat is okay, but if you’re Jewish, keep it on the downlow.
In the eyes of some in a crowd of 1,500 those Jewish pride flags resembled Israel’s blue-and-white.
“It’s triggering people, and it’s making them feel unsafe,” Eleanor Shoshany Anderson, one of those kicked out, was told, as she later recounted to Chicagoist.
“I really wanted to just be Jewish and gay in public and celebrate that.”
Their transgressions didn’t end there. When the enthusiastic masses chanted “From Palestine to Mexico, border walls have got to go,” the three took the poetic liberty of replacing the word “Palestine” with “everywhere” – which for the march’s disciplinarians was a grave act of defiance. (If you don’t believe this, check out the Dyke March’s official statement.) The irony is glaring: the few were forced to come out as Zionist among the anti-Zionist majority, in a space, mind you, that eschews rigid identities in favor of the freedom to define oneself at will and without penalty. Continue reading on The Jerusalem Post