By Fernando Zweifach López
In May, Pride Executive Director Fernando Lopez reflected on what the word “Resilient” means while announcing Resilience is the theme of this year’s Pride. Here is the announcement reprinted.
Have you taken a moment to pause and reflect on everything you have overcome in the last year? You have survived through a pandemic, isolation, fear, a reckoning on racial injustice, unemployment, hospitalization, an insurrection, and the impossibly devastating loss of loved ones counted in the approximately 600,000 to 900,000 COVID-19 deaths we’ve had in the United States. While we have further to go, you have made it this far. You are resilient.
Our community and movement remain under threat as the pandemic exposed systemic barriers to our success, anti-LGBTQ bills are being entered into legislative bodies across the country, and our civil rights hang in the balance again with the Supreme Court. Our community is also mobilizing, strengthening our national intersectional coalitions in deeply meaningful ways, assisted by the innovation our remote work has required us to learn. You are a part of that vital work.
Hope and gratitude may feel like impossible emotions to rip from the jaws of our own anxiety as we cautiously attempt to heal from this marathon of trauma, and yet as I write this to you, what echos through my mind is the strength and beauty that is queer resilience. Our diversity, creativity, resolve, and battle-tested brilliance have always helped this community shine.
Vaccines are helping to bring us all slowly back together, as we do the labor of discarding our trauma and relearn how to be in community and feel safe. In that recovery, we will rub our eyes and the world will slowly come into focus. It will become more and more clear the ways in which our community and movement can restore, rebuild, redeem, and revive one another. We will become whole again as we reimagine a free and fearless future and see that in our core we are still ourselves, full of pride and joy. Rest. Reflect. Heal. Better days lie ahead where we are together, and together, we are Resilient.