The Stonewall Riots, which erupted on June 28, 1969, were spurred as a response to the continued violence and repression against LGBTQIA+ – specifically from police authorities in New York City. In this video with Logo TV, activist and bestselling author Janet Mock explains why it wasn’t just the people present at the Stonewall uprising but also the people who were excluded from mainstream queer spaces that are important to understanding LGBTQIA+ resistance.
Mock emphasizes in the short clip that activists like Marsha P. Johnson and other trans women of color were integral in the Stonewall movement. After being systematically ignored and harassed by police for so long, the Stonewall uprising was a moment when these folx said “enough is enough.” In was in their exasperation that the movement was formed.
Mock explains that we should always remember which the “people whose bodies never had protection or shelter” like those who were differently-abled, trans women of color, drag queens and others. She encourages us to move beyond a focus on “who threw the first brick” and rather to the ways that politics of sexuality create a type of double marginalization. In the end, she says “it isn’t about parades. It isn’t about rainbow flags. It’s about resistance.”
Mock wrote an editorial about the Stonewall movie which she has said “rewrites LGBT history.” This is likely the reason why she wants to shift the focus to a better and more accurate understanding of what Stonewall was truly about.
Watch the short video below:
Photo: Logo TV screenshot