March 25, 2011

Queers organize protest @ LGBT Center

In response to the Center's cancellation of the Siegebusters event and banning of Siegebusters' meetings from the Center, queers organized a protest of the LGBT Center.

Here's the press advisory:


Groups challenge LGBT Center's move to ban anti-occupation group at behest of pro-Israel funders


Protest rally against LGBT Community Center: under pressure from pro-Israel funders, the Center has cancelled an anti-occupation fundraiser and banned meetings of a Palestine human rights group.


All conscientious community and: Siegebusters Working Group, Existence is Resistance, Israeli Apartheid Week organizers,


Saturday, March 5, 6:30-7:30pm


Outside LGBT Community Center, 208 West 13th Street (near 7th Ave.)

More info:

Many voices have been raised against the Center's decision through a petition: ( - 1400 signatures and counting, and statements from individuals and organizations: (

The LGBT Center's director, Glennda Testone, cancelled a major Israel Apartheid Week fundraiser this week. She acted just hours after an anti-Muslim activist threatened to organize donors to pull Center funding. Glennda also decided that SiegeBusters can't meet at the Center any more; and that airing Israel's violent repression of Palestinians -- queer and otherwise -- violates the Center's "safe haven."

This isn't the first time the Center is labeling community members "good" or "bad": it's not so long since trans people were literally thrown out when trying to attend Center events. We fought back then, and we'll fight back now. No silencing of voices calling for liberation.

Faced with bad press and a torrent of criticism, Glennda "offered" to substitute the fundraiser with a closed meeting about the Center's policies. We're not distracted by Glennda's bad-faith deal. And we don't have to have a meeting to know that the LGBT Center belongs to all of us.

Here's the list of sponsors the protest:
SiegeBusters + Existence is Resistance + Israeli Apartheid Week + Aswat – Palestinian Gay Women + Irish Queers + Al-Qaws for Sexual & Gender Diversity in Palestinian Society + Palestinian Queers for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions + Audre Lorde Project + NYU Students for Justice in Palestine + Jews Say No! + Queers for Economic + Justice Al-Awda New York: The Palestine Right to Return Coalition + Out- FM (WBAI) + Adalah-NY: The New York Campaign for the Boycott of Israel + Queering the Air (New Brunswick, NJ) + Jews Against the Occupation + US Boat to Gaza + Professor and author Lisa Duggan + Professor and author Sarah Schulman + International Socialist Organization + Author Sherry Wolf + Professor and author Judith Butler

Here's the Facebook event, which is now full of comments:

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About Queers for an Open LGBT Center