“Do you think that Pride as an event will happen in Ethiopia in your lifetime?” This was a question we asked for Nisnis, a magazine that we publish quarterly. Suffice it to say that most people agreed that a pride parade or a march in Ethiopia was not something that they would experience in their lifetime.
“I don’t think I will see it in this country. But if by some miracle if it were to happen, the people will come after us with stones and sticks. People have a lot of hate for us,” wrote Nati. It is heartbreaking to read so many comments that underline the homophobia and transphobia prevalent in our lives. This is not something that surprises any queer person in Ethiopia.
What may come as a surprise is the small and not so small victories that we us queer people find and achieve.
Hibist proudly telling us about passing a police station while wearing a rainbow facemask is one victory. A one-woman pride at Meskel Square is yet another small victory. Choosing to accept yourself despite years of religious indoctrination is a big victory.
Refusing to bow down and finding safe ways of resisting is powerful. And that is one aspect of pride that we covered in Nisnis.
As we celebrate pride month, we thought leafing through the pride issue Nisnis would be one way of reminding ourselves that we are a community that has always resisted.
Pride is revolutionary and we are one small example of that.