PSAs produced by Palestinian Queers for BDS
Three Palestinian LGBT organizations have released statements responding to the the New York LGBT Community Center's decision to cancel a "Party to End Apartheid" under pressure from donors. You can learn more about Michael Lucas (referenced in the first statement) here.
Palestinian Queers for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions: The Palestinian Queer Movement does not want to be used by Michael Lucas and his friends to justify the Israeli Occupation. Now that we are firmly emerged as an organic and integrated part of the global Queer Movement, Palestinian LGBT people are here to tell you that we need an end to the Occupation. Israeli fantasies about being "Democratic" while violating our Human Rights are absurd. And Israeli fantasies that they are rescuing us, are pathetic. The Occupation is keeping us from moving forward. Thus an anti Apartheid Party in the LGBT Centre should not be canceled on the basis of being irrelevant, or not related to LGBT issues. It is totally relevant and in the heart of LGBT struggle in Palestine, in NY and all around the world.
alQaws for Sexual and Gender Diversity in Palestinian Society and Aswat – Palestinian Gay Women (full statement here): We have recently concluded a first of a kind tour to the US, where we shared our personal, social and political struggle as Palestinian Queers living in Israel and Palestine … Your decision to ban an activist organization focused on Israel/Palestine limits freedom of expression for everyone who relies on the Center as a safe haven. In addition, your decision also tells LGBTQ Palestinians in New York and our community in Israel/Palestine that their human rights as Palestinians are not welcome at the Center, and that while they visit the Center, a part of their identity must be left at the door! … After experiencing such overwhelming support from prominent LGBT organizations and LGBT leaders in the US, we never imagined that the LGBT Center of New York would not join us, and the larger community, in connecting the struggle for LGBT rights to the struggle for human rights… We strongly urge you to reconsider your decision and allow the event "Party to End Apartheid" to take place as scheduled.