Tonight we attended Community Leaders Join LGBTQ Community to Condemn Violence and Bigotry -- pretty much the official Montgomery County MD event about the mass shooting at the Pulse LGBT+ nightclub in Orlando FL, i.e. the event that all the local and state politicians etc. were at, and by far the most visible Pulse event here. And as we expected, and some of tonight's speakers acknowledged, it was a long strange trip in many ways.
It was especially interesting as the Jewish holiday of Shavuot was ending at sunset, and so was another day of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan -- indeed, our Muslim organizational hosts invited us to join them for an iftar dinner after they retired for prayer (and any Muslim present was invited to join them for that as well). And of course the shooting was just yesterday morning (in the very early hours), and I just returned from the Philly Trans Health Conference with TransFaith today. This is quite a Pride season! Among other things.
And perhaps the very best part of tonight was James "Jim" Stowe's speech. Jim is the Director of the Montgomery County MD Office of Human Rights, and has been a powerful ally in local LGBTQ work. It's been a privilege and pleasure to work closely with him on trans issues here.
“Senator, why do we not have a Gay Pride parade in Montgomery County? We have members of the LGBTQ community in Montgomery County. Why don’t we stand up and be proud of that as well? And celebrate that!”