People in Ukraine do not like LGBT prides.
Whenever the pride is discussed, it can be heard that they can do everything they want at home but there’s no need to walk around the city. What is the reason behind it? The point is that people have poor understanding of what a pride is and what aims it has. They think that it’s an event during which people in colorful clothes (or even without it) agitate everyone for “turning to the dark side”.
But in fact, Kharkiv Pride is the march for equal rights for all the people no matter how they perceive themselves and whom they love. It is the march against discrimination, rejection and aggression with which the members of the community face every day. It is the response to the hatred they receive from the society. These are the reasons why LGBT+ people walk along the streets and attract attention to their rights. The more hatred we face, the louder we speak.
In what way? Read further.
We’ll conduct the pride even for those who wouldn’t attend it.
So, what is the possible option of telling people the essence of Kharkiv Pride? They say that seeing it once is better than hearing about that dozens of times. It’s better to read the mottos from the banners of the participants and understand that Pride is not about sex but about the rights. However, people with distorted understanding are unlikely to attend the pride. Thus, we decided to conduct the pride before it actually commences. In this way even those who were not going to attend it, would see us.
That is why we moved the mottos of the participants of Kharkiv Pride from their banners to city streets. Similarly to the march itself, the printouts depict real people who represent Kharkiv LGBT+ community. The sincerest thing is to express your own position openly.
It’s quite a symbolism that those against the equality usually express their positions with their faces covered. The same happened to the first posters which were torn and removed at night only 4 hours after being sticked.
The more hatred we face, the louder we speak.
That was the message which the activists left on each of the Kharkiv Pride posters damaged that night.
Soon the advertisements appeared on big screens in addition to the city walls. Almost all the operators of outdoor advertising refused to cooperate with us. Fortunately, we managed to find one that agreed. It was the first time when Kharkiv LGBT+ community got an opportunity to tell the whole city about its existence. As promised, we talk louder and louder.
We will shoot a video saying that the hatred won’t stop us and will call everyone to join the march.
“Completely ill bastards”, “Filth”, “If I were she, I’d keep my mouth shut”, “This plague has to be eradicated”, “You have to be sent to the funeral pile” – these are just a few of the comments from the pages of the LGBT+ community in social networks.
Upon the communication with the activists of the community it became clear that even after restricting access to their pages in social media, such comments are still with them as if they are tattooed on their bodies. People have to constantly live with them. Every day. From morning till the very evening. But despite this, they still have enough internal powers to fight for their rights.
The video depicts the representatives of Kharkiv LGBT+ communities and their supporters. They had no fear to appear in front of the camera completely helpless. They did it to show that words can do more harm than the most powerful weapons. Moreover, another idea was to show that they are not going to surrender despite the fact that society does not accept them.
We will have some radio pieces to talk about the motifs of the people supporting Kharkiv Pride.
Upon working on the project, we noticed an interesting fact. For some reason, the opponents of the LGBT+ think that the members of the society are eager to attend as many marches as possible.
But it’s definitely not true. As with all of us, every person coming to the pride has plenty of other pleasant things to do on a sunny Sunday in September: walking in the park, travelling somewhere in the countryside…no matter what the activity is, the most important is to do it with your nearest and dearest.
The point is that not everyone can enjoy these simple moments of joy. Upon coming out, LGBT+ people face the disapproval of the society, unfair treatment by the state and even threats to their lives. Therefore, they have to spend their own weekend going out to the streets to support their right to live a normal life and do not participate in such marches. This was the key message of the commercials on the radio.
Let’s turn hatred into the support of the LGBT+ movement.
No advertisement can stop the flow of hatred but we managed to find the way of converting this hatred into our advantage. With this aim we’ve created the mechanism of converting into a donation each comment humiliating personal dignity, calling to limitations of the rights and the liberties as well as to aggressive actions against the representatives of the community. All the donated money are further spent on informational campaigns promoting the support to LGBT+ people.
Initially we offered the followers of Kharkiv Pride in social networks to join this mechanism. If someone has written some rude or offensive words to you because of your support of the pride, do not try to debate with haters. The better option is to donate. Whenever such a situation happens, simply leave the following reply: “Voila! ✨ Your hate comment has just turned into something good because our budget was increased by … UAH. It means that even more people will learn about Kharkiv Pride. Keep doing this!”. Remember that “the more hatred we face, the louder we speak”.
This our second project aimed at supporting LGBT+ community and the second chance to rethink our attitude to the Pride. The march is not a parade of bright people but an opportunity to support the significancy and dignity of each person no matter of his or her views. We are proud of all the people who participate in the march despite all the possible risks and threats. The more hatred there will be in the society, the more help we’ll be able to provide to make their voices sound louder.
Max Burtsev, Creative Director of Аrrіbа!
Lada Sabova — Video Editor;
Palokio — Music;
Dasha Starko, Olya Shevchuk — Copywriters;
Dima Alimov, Yulya Razvenkova, Evgeniy Babanin — Designers;
Natasha Kuzmina, Olya Burtseva, Max Param, Olya Pomeranskaya, Polina Itkina, Yulya Razvenkova, Denis Galushka, Artur Ulyanitsky, Artem Kondratenko — Art-department.