I have griped over the years about the TBLG community sitting on the sidelines when it comes to issues of importance to the African-American community and the one sided out of context appropriation of our civil rights heroes and sheroes to highlight gaycentric issues.
Have to say I was shocked and surprised to see this joint letter come out from a coalition of national BTLG groups. Some of the members of this coalition who signed this joint letter, like the National Black Justice Coalition, the International Federation of Black Prides, the Task Force, Lambda Legal, NCLR and Unid@s weren’t a surprise to me, but others were.
Anyway, here’s the open letter.
National LGBT groups issued the following joint open letter on the killing of Trayvon Martin:
The tragic killing of Trayvon Martin is a national call to action.
Our hearts go out to Trayvon’s family and friends for the loss they have
experienced. We stand in solidarity with them as they demand answers
and justice. We represent organizations with diverse lesbian, gay,
bisexual and transgender constituencies.
Many in our community have been targets of bigotry and bias. We have a
great deal of experience grappling with the role bias plays in violent
crimes against our communities. We well know the stories of young people
targeted for violence just because of who they are: Rashawn Brazell,
Lawrence King, Ali Forney, Deoni Jones, Brandon White, Matthew Shepard,
Angie Zapata, Sean Kennedy and countless others.
Trayvon’s killing is a wakeup call to the enduring cancer of racism
and racial profiling. The pain his family continues to endure transcends
communities and unites us all. Every person, regardless of race,
religion, sexual orientation or gender identity, must be able to walk
the streets without fear for their safety.
Trayvon’s killing is tragic and the stark reality that racial bias
played a role in his death has alarmed our nation. Questions must be
asked. Answers must be sought. And justice must be served. We join our
voices to the chorus of so many others to demand that local and federal
authorities find those answers. We stand in solidarity with Trayvon’s
family and friends as they seek justice for his killing. In the timeless
words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., injustice anywhere is a threat to
CenterLink: The Community of LGBT Centers
Family Equality Council
Freedom to Marry
Human Rights Campaign
International Federation of Black Prides
LGBT Progress at the Center for American Progress
National Black Justice Coalition
National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR)
National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE)
National Coalition for LGBT Health
National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
National Stonewall Democrats
Out & Equal Workplace Advocates
Pride at Work
Services and Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE)
Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN)
The Trevor Project