Black Pride | St. Louis Public Radio

Black Pride

Black Pride St. Louis President Randy Rafter said, “Everyone’s invited; everyone’s included,” about this weekend’s events.
Evie Hemphill | St. Louis Public Radio

On Wednesday’s St. Louis on the Air, host Don Marsh discussed the intersectionality of black and queer identities and how the organization Black Pride St. Louis offers support for the community in advance of its celebratory weekend starting Friday.

The president of Black Pride St. Louis, Randy Rafter, joined Marsh in-studio as Earl Fowlkes, president and CEO of the Center for Black Equity, chimed in via phone.

Organizers of the Black Pride Festival set up a tent on Sunday in St. Louis' Grove neighborhood.
Jason Rosenbaum I St. Louis Public Radio

President Donald Trump’s words and actions were at the forefront of people’s minds on Sunday at St. Louis’ Black Pride Rally.

One of the longest-running black LGBTQ community events in the nation, this year’s gathering coincides with a summer in which the president announced on Twitter that transgender people were banned from serving in the military and, more recently, assigned some blame to counterprotesters for violence at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Members of Black Pride march in the Pride St. Louis parade in June.
Pride St. Louis

A group of people in St. Louis face a one-two punch of adversity every day.

As members of the LGBT population, they can legally be denied housing or fired on a whim. As African-Americans, they’re already more likely to be homeless or unemployed.

A small, local LGBT organization called Black Pride  embraces all these challenges. But as members prepare for their annual celebration this weekend in The Grove area, members still have to justify the group’s very existence.