Antifascist Action Edinburgh statement on the Pride Five arrests!


The following statement was originally posted to Facebook to address the shocking complicity of Glasgow Pride in the arrests of five queer, trans and antifascist activists at the Glasgow Pride parade on the 21st of August. It was subsequently been removed by Facebook after the post was reported, no doubt by directly of by those sympathetic to Glasgow Pride organisers. Radical voices within queer movements cannot and should not be silenced, so please find below the statement in full.

The continuing crank-wheel of commercialisation and police co-option of Prides across the world was seen, felt and heard at Glasgow Pride on Saturday. Members of the queer & trans antifa community displaying a ‘These faggots fight fascists’ banner were arrested on trumped up charges of homophobic aggravated breach of the peace. This was a disgusting move from the police, who arrested queer people at a queer march with a queer banner whilst at the same march ignoring genuine homophobic hate preachers on a street corner nearby. Protecting homophobic fascists whilst brutalising queer antifascists is emblematic of the behaviour of police Scotland who have more in common with the far right than with liberation movements.

Queer people being attacked by the police with the complicity of corporate friendly pride organisers is an absolute outrage. Rather than stand by their queer siblings, Glasgow pride instead chose to condemn the victims of police repression and side with the police via a grotesque public statement that represented only their own cowardly interests and not those of the queer & trans community at large. It comes as no surprise that those with financial motivations have little to nothing in common with those whom they claim to represent.

Those who have more in common with police than with LGBTQAI+ demonstrators fighting for their rights and against the fascist menace have no place running anything in the name of queer liberation, much less a pride march.

Pride has it’s origins in the Stonewall riots, which manifested the anger at police attacks on non-cis, non-hetero, non-white communities and as such is no place for police or corporate interests who only seek to legitimise themselves with a queer friendly face at pride events for their own selfish reasons.

Welcoming police endangers the safety of participants as was clearly demonstrated on Saturday, when police spinelessly attacked those standing up for their own freedom. Liberation must be intersectional and there can be no queer struggle without struggle against state repression, capitalism and the rise of an emboldened and violently homophobic fascism which the police facilitate the world over.

Edinburgh Antifa stands with the 5 activists arrested on Saturday (the Pride5) and all victims of state, fascist and corporate violence. We will be making our views heard and standing by our queer siblings at the Glasgow sheriff court on Monday morning, where those arrested are due to appear. We call on all antifascists to stand stand by queer comrades in their struggle for liberation!