Massive Pride demonstration in Madrid: “They want to push us back into the closet: we will not allow it” | Society | EUROtoday

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LGBT+ folks have despatched a transparent message from Madrid this Saturday: “We bravely went out to tell those who threaten us that we are many more,” stated the president of FELGTBI+, Uge Sangil, shortly earlier than main the nationwide Pride demonstration in Madrid. Like her, hundreds of individuals have come to the centre of the capital – 300,000 in response to the Government delegation and greater than 1,000,000, in response to the organisation – to observe the protest march, with the slogan Education, Rights and Peace: Pride that transforms.

“Education in diversity is a fundamental tool to combat hatred,” the organisations careworn of their manifesto, learn from Plaza de Colón at round 10:00 p.m. Shortly earlier than, the pinnacle of the demonstration had arrived, which began at 7:00 p.m. from Atocha, and which was attended by, amongst others: the president of Cogam, Ronny de la Cruz; the activist for the rights of LGTBI+ folks with disabilities, Ángeles Blanco; the second vice chairman of the Government and Minister of Labour, Yolanda Díaz; the Minister of Equality, Ana Redondo; or the Ministers of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, and Culture, Ernest Urtasun.

“There is a wave of far-right and repression that wants to push us back into the closet and is generalising a dangerous offensive that aims to cut back on freedom, equality and democracy. We will not allow it. This Government is a dam,” stated Minister Redondo. Hate crimes have elevated by 33.1% in Spain final yr, in response to the newest information from the Public Prosecutor’s Office, which in its annual report on the topic famous that greater than 80% of them usually are not reported. Crimes that, in response to the judicial establishment, “contribute to stigmatising and generating an imaginary of prejudices that often lead to the commission of physical crimes.”

“We want a State pact against hate speech,” insisted the president of FELGBTI+, whose mandate ends this yr, throughout the march. Precisely, the slogan of the second demand of the demonstration – the procession had 92 banners – known as for such an settlement.

Currently, Spain stands out within the rating of nations – it occupies fourth place – ready yearly by ILGA (the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Intersex Association) based mostly on standards of security and ensures for the group. The southern European nation grew to become an LGTBI+ benchmark in 2005, when the Government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero (PSOE) accepted equal marriage; and two years later, the Gender Identity Law. The final regulation in favor of the group dates from 2023, processed by the coalition authorities between PSOE and Podemos: the so-called ley trans (Law 4/2023 for the actual and efficient equality of trans folks and for the assure of the rights of LGTBI+ folks).

The rights of the collective “are being questioned in too many parts of the world,” Yolanda Díaz has denounced. “There are states in the European Union with violations of rights,” she has added, referring to the rise of the intense proper in some international locations on the continent. The EU Agency for Fundamental Rights confirms “signs of progress” within the area. “However, intimidation, harassment and violence continue to be constant threats,” the company warns, urging international locations to “act decisively and reinforce the progress achieved,” in addition to to develop sturdy insurance policies that counteract discrimination and defend the rights achieved.

Cold beers and rainbow followers

Meanwhile, on the outskirts of Paseo del Prado, and conscious of the greater than 30 levels that hit Madrid throughout the afternoon, a bunch of younger folks had been sharing chilly beers. “It's going to be a long day; you have to come well prepared,” stated Andrea Martínez, a 28-year-old from Madrid. Street distributors additionally took benefit of the chance: Among essentially the most sought-after gadgets, aside from the group's flags, had been rainbow followers. “If I make 100 euros I'll be satisfied,” one in all them summed up. The LGTBI+ anthem resounded within the background. Who cares (from Alaska and Denmark).

Just a little additional again, music roared within the Ministry of Health's float because it waited to start its journey. It is the primary time {that a} authorities ministry has joined the occasion with a automobile, “a party of vindication, struggle and joy, in the face of a bitter right wing that wants to curtail rights and freedoms,” stated Minister Mónica García. “Here is a demonstration of how to fight for freedom; in the world of the right there is only room for the Melonis, the Orbans, the Mileis and the Ayusos,” she continued. García has additionally attacked the reform of the regional trans regulation, promoted by the Executive of Isabel Díaz Ayuso (PP); she has described the reform as “a step backwards and a pathologisation of LGTBI+ people.”

One of the Madrid organisations that has most opposed Ayuso's modifications is Chrysallis, devoted to trans households and youngsters and youth. “The Constitutional Court will annul these reforms,” ​​predicted Encarni Bonilla, president of the affiliation, in reference to the appeals of unconstitutionality introduced in June by the Government of Spain in opposition to the modifications of the Community of Madrid. “We must celebrate that we continue to make trans children visible and that no matter how much they want to cut our rights, they are not going to cut our lives,” added Bonilla.

“This is the first Pride we have celebrated with an institutional setback in Madrid,” stated Irene Montero. The Podemos MEP and former Minister for Equality was not on the head of the demonstration, however a little bit additional again. “I wish Mrs Ayuso and Mr Almeida would come to find out what freedom is,” she added.

One of the banners from the Pride march in Madrid.
One of the banners from the Pride march in Madrid. Andrea Comas

Despite the truth that Madrid Pride is among the most vital in Europe and the world, neither the regional president nor the mayor have attended any of the occasions. They haven’t even put in the flag of the collective within the institutional headquarters and the municipal posters of the occasion have been criticized for stereotyping LGBTI+ folks. “We are not condoms or drinks or heels,” the protesters criticized Almeida's bulletins.

One group that was absent from this Pride was non-binary folks, who felt that the newest rules had left them out. Thus, they demanded a 3rd field on official paperwork that has not been included within the regulation. “For the Minister of Equality, we are not a priority,” criticised Samthony Abián, a 29-year-old non-binary individual, earlier than the march, which they didn’t attend.

This yr, for the primary time within the historical past of Madrid Pride, there was a visitor nation: Colombia. Its float (one of many 51 that crossed Madrid till midnight) was recognizable by the vallenato and cumbia rhythms that resonated by means of its audio system. “I came to celebrate, but also to raise my voice,” warned Camilo Guerrero, a 39-year-old Colombian resident in Madrid, who was invited to the procession. Colombia obtained the MADO 2024 award for its efforts to grow to be an LGTBI+ vacation spot. Although the nation is a benchmark in Latin America, LGTBiphobia persists: in 2022 there have been 42 murders and 840 circumstances of violence, in response to the newest official information. For Guerrero, “it is time to claim our rights; we are in a global context that puts the collective's achievements in jeopardy.”