Emily Lyndon, South west London Socialist Party
London Pride took place on Saturday 1 July with over one million people attending across the city.
Socialist Party members from London branches and beyond came together to speak to attendees about the socialist alternative to the austerity and suffering being served to us by the Tory government. Throughout the day, people snapped up copies of the Socialist and donated over £100, ‘end oppression, fight for socialism’ badges were worn with pride. The atmosphere was angry and hopeful, with many people approaching the stall to start conversations, concluding that capitalism most certainly is ‘not giving’. Once we peel back the insidious layers of rainbow capitalism, with huge corporations dominating the event masquerading as LGBTQ+ allies for profit, it was clear. There is an urgent need to end the suffering caused by Tory austerity.
People of all ages spent time talking to Socialist Party members about the ways their lives would improve if there was a new mass workers’ party. Throughout the day, people discussed with us the collective action needed to create a more just world for everyone.
Need for socialism
Parallels were drawn between the issues facing LGBTQ+ people during the Stonewall riots and the oppression that trans people face today at the hands of right-wing governments. Trans people are being failed by governments who are relentlessly encouraging harmful rhetoric, and restricting essential health care for people who need it. The lack of liberation for trans people over fifty years on from the first Pride shows the inability to achieve an inclusive society under capitalism.
Despite an unnerving police presence and the facade of corporate rainbows, one takeaway was clear: Pride will always be a protest, no matter how many millionaires use it for their own financial gain. Now more than ever we must continue our fight to end capitalism and ensure a safe future for all.