LANSING, Mich. — In memory of the Stonewall Riots, the Willow Tree Family Center in Lansing hosted their second annual Black Pride event. Their focus? To highlight the struggles and contributions of the Black, gay experience.
"We're having Black Pride that centers Black, queer, freedom fighters specifically," said Carrington Kelsey, one of the event organizers. "So we're talking about Marsha P. Johnson, we're talking about how Malcolm X. was actually a bisexual sex worker at one point in time and people don't know about these histories."
Marsha P. Johnson was a gay liberation activist and one of the most prominent figures at the Stonewall Riots in 1969. Those riots were a spontaneous series of protests by members of the gay community at the Stonewall Inn in New York City from June 28 to July 3.
This weekend's event to honor the Stonewall Riots featured music, vendors and even free face painting. Kelsey said get-togethers like this one are important for discussions about how to include more people at the table and enact change.
"We talk to those voices, we go to those voices and say hey how do we include those voices and the people who are actually doing the work like BLM," Kelsey said. "We are constantly talking about cultural change."
If you missed Saturday's event, be on the lookout for it this time next year to get in on the fun and remembrance.
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