Yes. The million-dollar question that floods the minds of numerous corporations and consumers at the end of June once their crayon usage returns from a vibrant rainbow to a dull gray.
Pride 2020 put an extra emphasis on activism with the nationwide protests sparked by the inhumane killing of George Floyd. Putting the celebratory arm in the backseat so to speak, the Pride 2020 conversation focused on amplifying Queer and Trans People of Color (QTPOC) voices through the month of June, giving back to the pioneers who catalyzed the rights the queer community has today.
To continue this energy year-round, here is a list of QTPOC businesses, films, shows and musicians to continue supporting far and beyond the month of June.
On a local level for all you Seattleites out there, now that King County has entered the phase where haircuts are permitted, the only barbershop/salon you should be going to is Andro Barbershop. Short for androgynous, Andro is a queer black-owned barbershop made to be a safe space for those looking for a fresh cut with an at home feel. Fun fact, I found this shop on a literal rainy day a month into living in Seattle when I stumbled in because it was the only one open. They were recently looted and are currently taking donations to help pay for the costs.
On a national scale we love TomboyX, and not only because they are one of our clients. TomboyX has been a mission-driven company since day one, starting the business not because of their passion for fashion, but for their love for the queer community. Over the years they have given more than $100,00 to various queer causes and organizations, and continue to make products with the queer community at the forefront.
Just as 2019 was wrapping up, Haitian-Canadian DJ Kaytranada blessed us with his sophomore album “Bubba,” including the likes of Kali Uchis, Tinashe, and Pharrell Williams to name a few. According to Paper Magazine’s 2020 Pride cover series, “Bubba,” is a black dance album with an open invite to those who vibe to it. Phase 4 of reopening Washington is when we’ll finally get to re-friend our local bartenders and enjoy the comfort of spilled drinks and loud music. So, until then, study up on his past work to get the juices flowing.
Just this week, Netflix debuted Laverne Cox’s documentary “Disclosure” a film analyzing how Hollywood has portrayed trans people in media. In the past decade, shows like “Orange is the New Black” and “Pose” have increased trans representation. The film opens the conversation how every time there is an increase in visibility amongst a marginalized group, a spike in violence and legislative assault follows, as we saw earlier this month with Trump’s reversal of transgender health protection.
Also this month, season 2 of Ryan Murphy’s “Pose” made it on Netflix. “Pose” is a FX drama that tells the story of 1980s ball culture, and gained popularity for having the largest cast of transgender actors to ever appear as series regulars on a scripted show. The representation doesn’t stop on screen as members behind the scenes also reflect this diversity, which led to black and trans makeup artist Deja Smith to be nominated for an Emmy.
Currently on the forefront, cast member Indya Moore has been guiding the conversation around the intersectionality of being QTPOC amidst this national movement. She is raising thousands for the black trans community who she mentions is often left out of the Black Lives Matter conversation.
During July and beyond, amplify black and QTPOC voices. A little goes a long way, and it is never too late to start learning. Pride was always about the people and never about the corporations, and it’s time to do our part in maintaining that mission and living every color of the flag.