On June 15th, 2019 in Hamilton, Ontario, Pride was attacked by a group of far-right homophobes, christian fundamentalists, neo-nazis, and queer bashers. They arrived with massive homophobic signs and banners, and immediately began to scream insults and slurs. They aggressively harassed individuals, made jokes about rape, and threatened physical violence. Things quickly escalated as the bigots violently confronted people who were holding a fabric barrier in an attempt to block them from disrupting Pride. Initiated by the far-right activists a brawl broke out – queers who refused to allow their presence to go unchallenged were attacked, but fought back. Several friends were injured and required medical attention. After being kicked out of Pride, this same group chased and assaulted queer youth in the neighbourhood, and then went on to attack people at Toronto Pride the following week.
Since these events, Hamilton Police have focused exclusively on going after the queers who defended themselves and their community. Over the course of the last week, police have been targeting and harassing known queer anarchists in the city. Our dear friend Cedar (who wasn’t even present at the event!) was arrested on Saturday, and sits in jail on hunger strike as you read this. On Monday, another queer was arrested – they were released from the station and are facing two criminal charges. We have confirmation that another arrest is forth-coming, and that even more are a possibility.
Fuck this and fuck the police for all they do to protect racists, misogynists, and homophobes. Drop all charges against pride defenders, and free Cedar now!