Tel Aviv’s annual Gay Pride Parade drew more than 200,000 people to the streets on Tuesday June 13. Members of the LGBTQ community and their allies from around the world celebrated along the beach, marching for values of freedom, tolerance and democracy. Their stories are heartbreaking and heartwarming.
Mahdi Satri, Israel, Enlisting in the Israel Defense Forces as a Zionist, Israeli-Arab Muslim
“Being a supporter of the LGBT caused me many problems, not only in my community, but in my family as well, as I am a Muslim advocate for LGBT rights who lives in an Arab village near Akko. It’s really hard to stand for what you believe in. They’re boycotting me in my village and inciting against me in mosques.
I’ve been going to the parades since I was 15 years-old without my parent’s permission, but two days ago they knew that I was going to the parade. They don’t want me in the house anymore, so I’m looking for apartment now. I don’t regret anything I’ve done. I’ll continue to support LGBT rights, and I’ll continue to march at every Gay Pride Parade in Israel.
For me, standing with the LGBT flag at the parade is an honor, because we call for human rights. At the parades, you see children, teenagers, women, men, religious people, and people from different political parties. You see Members of Parliament and ministers. They have nothing in common except for one thing—being human!”
Alexandra Markus, Montreal, Research Analyst and Olah Chadasha
“I expected to get flack…
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