By Bryan Garcia (he/him/his)
Austin Pride is upon us. As queer people of color communities, we clearly belong at the table but are rarely welcomed into the room. Over the decades, Pride has been co-opted and become a corporate, white, commercial, cis event. The rainbow-colored police vehicles don’t help make the event more of a comfortable experience either. And while the LGBT acronym is a huge marketing tool for the event, it feels like only the “G” is ever really centered, leaving the rest of the community to fall on the wayside in terms of visibility. Queer people of color communities deserve a space where they feel like they can show up as their whole selves regardless of age, class, belief, and/or ability.
So what can you do this year to celebrate Austin Pride if the parties and parades are not appealing to your needs and desires?
Create Your Own Celebration.
Make it what you need it to be. Bring your favorite chair to lounge in. Fave alcoholic or non-alcoholic beverages. A nice cushion and maybe a comfy blanket to keep you warm. Or a fan to cool you down. You are in charge of the atmosphere. Make your own playlist! Share it with your friends and have them praise your secret inner DJ. Invite your people. Dance. Rest. Make it about community care. Make it a potluck. Celebrate each other. That vibrant chosen family and community YOU have worked so hard to build deserves to be acknowledged and put in the spotlight. Affirm one another. Remind each other why your existence is so important.
We Have a Seat Saved for You.
There’s always room at allgo. We aim to curate spaces where you and yours can show up as your whole authentic selves. Many people are isolated from affirming communities so we welcome you to ours. This one has room to deeply plant your roots and make yourself at home. Our mission to nurture and celebrate queer people of color by building, educating, and mobilizing communities toward a just and equitable society has never stopped or been more meaningful than it is today.
We have a virtual event coming up about envisioning PRIDE for QPOC coming up Tuesday, August 10th – 6-7:30 PM where we will talk about what it means to us as queer people of color communities to celebrate pride, which was originally a riot led by queer people of color and born out of a struggle that continues to this day. We would love for you to be there. You can register here! This free online event is one of many this year around promoting the well-being and vitality of QPOC communities in Austin, TX. For more information about this and other Health and Wellness events, send a message to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also register here.
Make Your Well-Being a Priority.
This past almost year and a half has taken us all in so many different directions and because of this, it is important to ground ourselves in the truth that we are still here: living, breathing, and the same sun and moon are still shining on us. July was designated as “National Minority Mental Health Month” by the House of Representatives in 2008, but recently reclaimed and renamed Mental Health Liberation Month by BEAM, the Black Emotional and Mental Health Collective. I like this name much better. Even though this month is coming to an end, we deserve to have ways in which we can cope with and manage stress in healthy ways all throughout the year.
One of these could be through guided meditation. I have noticed that a lot of the ones I have used in the past for myself have been voiced by white voice actors or instructors. So, I want to share a guided meditation by Jessamyn Stanley, a proud black, fat, queer poly femme yoga instructor and author of Every Body Yoga. In this video, she will give an introduction to the meditation, set you up, and then walk you through it. Feel free to close your eyes if that makes you comfortable and enjoy!
So, how are you celebrating Pride this year? Let us know @allgoqpoc on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram!