The activist group Queers Against Israeli Apartheid will attempt to march in the July 4 Pride Toronto parade despite a Pride ban on the use of the phrase “Israeli apartheid,” setting up a potential confrontation with festival organizers on the day of the event.
“I don’t think that a suggestion that they don’t like our message should keep us out of Pride. So there is an intention to march, and we will find the message that works in that march and we will be there. We need our voice to be heard,” said Queers Against Israeli Apartheid (QuAIA) spokeswoman Elle Flanders.Since Queers Against Israeli Apartheid is out, how about Queers for Zionhass (QfZ)? It has the advantage of being accurate and snappier, don't you think?
Flanders declined to discuss the specifics of QuAIA’s plans. Though Pride executive director Tracey Sandilands said that QuAIA would be welcomed if it marched under a name that excluded “apartheid,” such as “Queers in Favour of a Free Palestine,” Flanders said QuAIA would not consider such a change.
Flanders made her comments after an unusual outdoor news conference Tuesday morning on the lawn outside the Dundonald St. house that serves as Pride’s office. As Pride officials spoke from a microphone on the front porch, about 100 QuAIA members and supporters surrounded the iron fence that enclosed the lawn, holding pieces of paper that read “Free Speech” and chanting “shame” and “resign.”
Pride co-chair Genevieve D’Iorio said the board voted to ban “Israeli apartheid” because the long-running controversy around its use had put the festival “in jeopardy.”...