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Queers Say No to Pinkwashing at Commonwealth Club
A small but hardy group of queer activists gathered outside of the Commonwealth Club in San Francisco to let people know we won't be used to pinkwash apartheid.
The San Francisco Commonwealth Club hosted an event entitled "LGBT Rights in Israel: 25 Years of Progress and Challenges" today, featuring the Bay Area's Pinkwasher-In-Chief, Arthur Slepian, Executive Director and Founder of A Wider Bridge. Slepian's role is to go around promoting the idea that Israel is a progressive, democratic society because it has LGBT rights for Jewish citizens of Israel.
Queer activists and Palestinian queers call this "pinkwashing" - using Israel's liberal policies on sexuality and gender as a smokescreen to cover up its crimes against Palestinians, migrant workers, especially recently African migrants, and its apartheid system that legally discriminates between citizens on the basis of nationality and religion. We won't be used!
We handed out copies of a brochure called "The Truth About Gay Israel" as well as an article by Gheith Hilal of the Palestinian queer group, Al Qaws, laying out Eight Questions Palestinian Queers Are Tired of Hearing.
The event didn't seem to be very well attended, but a number of those who did go in thanked us for the information.
Wherever there is pinkwashing, let there be resistance!