This weekend the largest mass shooting in America since Wounded Knee took place in Orlando, Florida. Pulse, a gay club celebrating Pride, was targeted during a Latinx night, and most of the 50 people who lost their lives belonged to the Latinx queer community. Over 100 people were shot.
This violent event has shaken our local queer and Latinx communities. Our Muslim community is anticipating a wrongful backlash of Islamophobia. This has effected Bicycle Coalition staff and volunteers deeply and personally.
This Was a Hate Crime Against Queer and Trans People of Color
It is important to recognize that people who have GLBQ orientation, and folks who identify as transgender, have historically been the subject of violence and exclusion. Policies against gay relationships and families are periodically violently enforced, and widespread discrimination makes being queer and trans unsafe. The effects of this discrimination, homophobia and transphobia are compounded for queer and trans folks of color. This is why our communities are mourning and asking for change.
It is our intention to focus on the people and community who were attacked in Orlando. Please take this opportunity to see the faces and read the stories of the 49 victims. Most of them were queer people of color. They are important.
To further center the community in Orlando, we would like to share this video featuring trans and queer Latinxs responding to the tragedy. Powerful words, and crucial perspective.
Creating Safer Spaces
The Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition has been working on creating safer spaces for staff, volunteers, and our partners. Safer spaces are anti-oppression spaces where everyone in them agrees to work to disrupt oppressive forces like homophobia, transphobia, Islamophobia, and racism. We feel this is our responsibility in a world where the Pulse attack can happen.
Our queer, transgender, and Muslim Friends are always welcome in our spaces and at our events, and we will continue to work with you to create safer spaces that include all of us.
Wishing you all peace and healing in this time of mourning.
Minneapolis Bicycle Coalition Safer Spaces Policy
Safer spaces are intentional anti-oppression spaces, created with the goal of supporting and welcoming all identities, meaning all genders, races, religions, abilities, orientations, etc. We make safer spaces by being brave enough to enter these spaces, being vulnerable to making mistakes and learning, and by calling out and responding to oppressive behavior.We will know our spaces are actively anti-oppression when everyone feels they can engage to their fullest.