Hundreds of people gathered in Grote Markt on Sunday, June 4 for an anti-capitalist pride march. The demonstration took place as a way to raise criticism and awareness against pink and rainbow washing, the corporate practices of co-opting LGBTQ+ issues for commercial purposes throughout the month of June.
Queer Pride Groningen, a non-profit volunteer group and organizer of the march, reiterated the actively inclusive approach they want the march to have and a boycott of corporations that take away space from those targeted by anti-LGBTQ+ discrimination.
Participants gave speeches and read poems as they took centerstage throughout the event.
The colorful parade united a thriving queer community in the Northern Netherlands, waving flags and chanting to the rhythm of drums. “Power to the people, and people have the power, we’re getting stronger by the hour,” was the catchphrase articulated in unison by the crowd.
Demonstrators filled the streets and walked together across some of the main throughfares, going down Herestraat and coasting along Gedempte Zuiderdiep, Akerkhof and Broerstraat, before heading back to the squares.
The demonstration ended on a forward-looking note. “If you’re queer, it’s queer pride every single day,” said one of the organizers in a plea to keep in mind that advocacy is a long-term commitment.
After the march, participants were encouraged to attend the information fair, where a host of other local activist organizations got involved, such as the Groningen Feminist Network, International Socialists Groningen and Groningen for Palestine.
The event celebrates its fifth year in a row and has taken on a distinctive political stance. Sunday’s march officially launches pride month, which marks the remembrance of Stonewall riots in New York in 1969. Other events will be hosted later this summer.
Pride Groningen will take place on Friday, August 18 and Saturday August 19, 2023.