On June 14, 2020 almost 15,000 people risked their health to march in support of Black Lives–this time to remind the world that Black Lives Matter includes Black LGBT persons. The tradition of risking oneself for the right to safety for everyone in diverse Black communities is a long one. For instance, have you heard of the Sojourners for Truth and Justice? During the red scare of the 1950s, when the U.S. worked to silence all types of freedom protests, the women in Sojourners for Truth and Justice marched on Washington to demand an end to anti-black violence and American apartheid.
This is from Equality Archive: “In their 1951 march on Washington, “A Call to Negro Women,” they read a list of grievances that denounced the State’s complicity in racist violence against black women. Their agenda—which was deemed subversive during the Red Scare—highlighted the ways in which, as mothers, wives, and sisters, they experienced violence and oppression within the U.S. apartheid system. In an issue of the Freedom newspaper, Lorraine Hansberry offers a report, “Women Voice Demands in Capital Sojourn” on Sojourners for Truth and Justice’s attempt to meet with President Harry Truman. They proclaimed: “In the spirit of Harriet Tubman and Sojourner Truth—we demand the death of Jim Crow.”
The group included black women writers Lorraine Hansberry and Alice Childress, as well as activists Shirley Graham DuBois and Louise Thompson Patterson. You can learn more in this video by Alexis Pauline Gumbs: