Culture

Pride Month Isn’t Over Yet: Here Are Some Of Our Favorite Online Pride Events You Can Still Celebrate With

Obviously Pride month has been fundamentally changed this year, thanks to the Coronavirus pandemic – which forced nearly 500 LGBTQ events to postpone or cancel. It’s led many organizations and Pride-goers struggling to comprehend how to celebrate this year’s Pride month.

Fortunately, the strong as ever queer spirit of the LGBT+ community has united to say: the spirit of pride will live on even if we can’t meet in person. 

From New York and Mexico City to LGBTQ-rights organizations, several have teamed up to make sure that the celebration lives on. Here are some of our favorite Pride events that you can still attend (from the safety of your home):

Mexico City Pride: June 27

Credit: @MarchaLGBTCDMX / Twitter

Even though Mexico City’s famed Paseo Reforma and Zócalo won’t be taken over by thousands of proud revelers this year, the pride flag will continue to fly high. The city’s annual Pride celebration – one of the world’s largest – has gone fully digital this year and will feature some seriously talented artists in the lineup.

From incredible drag performers to Sporty Spice (of the actual Spice Girls) there will be amazing icons headlining this year’s event. And it will be led by none other than Mexican superstar, Thalia.

Tune into the event’s social networks here on June 27 for all the fun!

New York City Virtual Pride: June 28

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New York is still pulling out all the stops for its Pride celebration, recruiting superstar singer Janelle Monaé and Schitt’s Creek creator Dan Levy as two of the four marshals for the celebration taking place on June 28. The event will be streaming on ABC News Live from noon to 2 p.m. EST and on WABC Channel 7.

Billy Porter, Miss Richfield 1981, and Deborah Cox will all also participate in the celebration.

NYC Pride organizers just announced a virtual rally against police brutality as well, alongside GLAAD and the National LGBTQ Task Force, for June 26. It will be hosted by Brian Michael Smith and Ashlee Marie Preston, and you can register and find more info online.

San Francisco Pride: June 27 & 28

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San Francisco Pride will host an online celebration and rally on June 27 and June 28. The event will feature live and prerecorded performances, and greetings from LGBTQ community members, elected officials and celebrities. 

The event can be livestreamed via San Francisco Pride’s website.

Club Quarantine: Nightly

Credit: ClubQuarantine / Instagram

As lockdowns went into effect across North America, underground queer nightlife found a new venue on Zoom, with Club Quarantine quickly emerging as the pandemic’s most sought-after dance event. Recent celebrity sightings include alternative pop artist Charli XCX, model Kiko Mizuhara and actress Hunter Schafer — and Pride brings even more surprises.

After hosting the official launch party for Pride Toronto on June 1, organizers are keeping the energy running high every night with a top secret lineup of international DJs and performers, through the end of the month.

Cincinnati Black Pride: June 25

Cincinnati’s Black Pride celebration has already announced a diverse slate of online events, including the third year of the Black Alphabet Film Festival, which features work by and documenting the diversity of the Black LGBTQ+ experience, taking place on June 25.

The Vizazi Torch Awards, which honor Cincinnati residents working to improve the lives of queer and trans Black people in the city, will be held digitally on June 26. There will also be virtual parties all weekend long, with DJs spinning everything from underground house to ’60s classics and African dance music

Attitude’s Pride At Home: June 20-28

We see you Covid-19, and we raise you June 20 – with the inaugural Attitude Pride at Home, a festival of love and diversity across nine days and two weekends to benefit the Attitude Magazine Foundation for LGBTQ causes.

Can’t Cancel Pride Project: June 25

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Sia, Adam Lambert, Billy Porter, Katy Perry, and many more are slated to perform as part of “Can’t Cancel Pride,” a benefit concert that will be aired on iHeartRadio at 9 p.m. EST on June 25. Donations will go to organizations like The Trevor Project, GLAAD, and the National Black Justice Coalition, as well as towards COVID-19 relief for the LGBTQ+ community.

“Now is a time we need to come together to support the organizations that help bring critical resources to LGBTQ people in need and ‘Can’t Cancel Pride’ aims to do just that,” iHeartMedia’s Gayle Troberman told Variety.

The goal for “Can’t Cancel Pride” is to raise $5 million through a mix of individual donations and corporate sponsorships. People can already start giving to the cause on their website.

Global Pride 2020: June 27

Credit: GlobalPride2020 / Instagram

On Saturday 27 June, Pride organizations from across the world will celebrate Global Pride 2020. With musical and artistic performances, speeches from activists and campaigners, and addresses by public figures, we will stream 24 hours of content that reflects and celebrates the beautiful diversity of LGBTI+ people everywhere.

Global Pride will be live-streamed and you can watch anywhere with a computer or mobile device and an internet connection.

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Peru’s Indigenous Are Turning To Ancestral Medicines To Fight The Coronavirus

Culture

Peru’s Indigenous Are Turning To Ancestral Medicines To Fight The Coronavirus

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With news headlines like “How Covid-19 could destroy indigenous communities”, it’s hard to understate the affect that the Coronavirus has had on Indigenous communities across the world.

Even before the pandemic hit, native populations were already at increased risk of health complications, poor access to medical care, lack of proper education, and even premature death. The pandemic has only exacerbated these issues as government programs and NGOs who delivered aid to far flung communities have grind to a halt.

However, many communities have started taking the matter into their own hands by creating their own impromptu healthcare systems based on ancestral techniques and others have barricaded off their villages from the outside world in an effort to stem the flow of the virus.

In Peru, many Indigenous communities are turning to centuries-old medicines to fight back against the Coronavirus.

The Coronavirus has had a devastating impact on Peru – the country with the world’s highest per capita Covid-19 mortality rate. At particular risk is the nation’s large Indigenous community, who often lack proper access to education efforts and medical care. This has forced many Indigenous groups to find their own remedies.

In the Ucayali region, government rapid response teams deployed to a handful of Indigenous communities have found infection rates as high as 80% through antibody testing. Food and medicine donations have reached only a fraction of the population. Many say the only state presence they have seen is from a group responsible for collecting bodies of the dead.

At least one community, the Indigenous Shipibo from Peru’s Amazon region, have decided to rely on the wisdom of their ancestors. With hospitals far away, doctors stretch too thin and a lack of beds, many have accepted the alternative medicine.

In a report by the Associated Press, one villager, Mery Fasabi, speaks about gathering herbs, steeping them in boiling water and instructing her loved ones to breathe in the vapors. She also makes syrups of onion and ginger to help clear congested airways.

“We had knowledge about these plants, but we didn’t know if they’d really help treat COVID,” the teacher told the AP. “With the pandemic we are discovering new things.”

One of the plants the Shipibo are using is known locally as ‘matico.’ The plant has green leaves and brightly colored flowers. And although Fasabi admits that these ancestral remedies are by no means a cure, the holistic approach is proving successful. She says that “We are giving tranquility to our patients,” through words of encouragement and physical touch.

Even before the Coronavirus, Indigenous communities were at a greater risk for infectious diseases.

Indigenous peoples around the globe tend to be at higher risk from emerging infectious diseases compared to other populations. During the H1N1 pandemic in Canada in 2009, for example, aboriginal Canadians made up 16% of admissions to hospital, despite making up 3.4% of the population.

Covid-19 is no exception. In the US, one in every 2,300 indigenous Americans has died, compared to one in 3,600 white Americans.

Indigenous groups are particularly vulnerable to dying from Covid-19 because they often live days away from professional medical help. As of July 28, the disease had killed 1,108 indigenous people and there had been 27,517 recorded cases, with the majority in Brazil, according to data published by Red Eclesial Panamazonia (Repam).

Some communities are turning inward to survive COVID-19, barricading villages and growing their own food.

Despite the immense threat they face, Indigenous communities are fighting back.

“I am amazed to see the ways that indigenous peoples are stepping up to provide support where governments have not,” Tauli-Corpuz, a teacher at Mexico’s UNAM, told The Conversation. “They are providing PPE and sanitation, making their own masks, and ensuring that information on Covid-19 is available in local languages, and are distributing food and other necessities.”

They are also choosing to isolate. In Ecuador’s Siekopai nation, about 45 Indigenous elders, adults and children traveled deep into the forest to their ancestral heartland of Lagartococha to escape exposure to the Coronavirus, says the nation’s president Justino Piaguaje.

Despite their best efforts, many experts are extremely concerned for the survival of many Indigenous communities.

Credit: Ginebra Peña / Amazonian Alliance

They are already facing the ‘tipping point’ of ecological collapse due to increased threats of deforestation, fires, industrial extraction, agribusiness expansion and climate change,” Amazon Watch executive director Leila Salazar-Lopez told UNESCO of Amazonian Indigenous groups.

“Now, the pandemic has created one more crisis, and as each day passes, the risk of ethnocide becomes more real.”

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Cuba Locks Down Havana To Stop Covid-19 As Cubans Struggle To Afford Everyday Items

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Cuba Locks Down Havana To Stop Covid-19 As Cubans Struggle To Afford Everyday Items

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Cuba has been one of the hemisphere’s coronavirus success stories — but a sudden outbreak in its capital has brought on a strict, two-week Havana lockdown. Residents of the capital city will be forced to stay-at-home for 15-days, while people from other parts of the island ill be prohibited from visiting – essentially sealing off the city from the outside world.

Meanwhile, the Coronavirus pandemic has pummeled the island’s economy and has left many everyday items out of reach for many Cubans. Some are being forced to turn to ‘dollar stores,’ where the U.S. dollar is once again accepted as hard currency – something now allowed since 1993.

Officials have ordered a strict 15-day lockdown of Havana in an effort to stamp out the spread of Coronavirus in the capital.

Aggressive anti-virus measures, including closing down air travel, have virtually eliminated COVID-19 in Cuba with the exception of Havana, where cases have surged from a handful a day to dozens daily over the last month. 

A daily curfew from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. was instituted Tuesday. Most stores are barred from selling to shoppers from outside the immediate neighborhood in order to discourage people from moving around the city. 

Some Havana residents complained that the measures were complicating the already difficult task of buying food in a city hit by constant shortages and endless lines for a limited supply of basic goods. Some provinces that saw no new cases for weeks have begun detecting them in recent days, often linked to travelers from Havana.

The start of in-person classes for students was also indefinitely delayed in Havana, while schools opened normally in the rest of Cuba.

To enforce the lockdown, police stationed on every road leaving Havana are supposed to stop anyone who doesn’t have a special travel permit, which is meant to be issued only in extraordinary circumstances.

Under the strict new lockdown measures, anyone who is found in violation of the stay-at-home orders face fines of up to $125 per violation, more than triple the average monthly wage.

The island nation had seemed to manage the pandemic well – with fewer cases than many of its Caribbean neighbors.

Credit: Ivan Bor / Getty Images

The island of 11 million people has reported slightly more than 4,000 confirmed coronavirus cases, with fewer than 100 deaths, one of the lowest rates in the region.

The government made face masks obligatory in the early stages of its pandemic response, and in the first months of the crisis police aggressively fined and even jailed people for violations. 

That vigilance slackened somewhat as Havana moved out of the first, strictest phase of lockdown in July, when public transportation restarted and people returned to work. The number of coronavirus cases then began to climb again.

Meanwhile, the Cuban economy has tanked and residents are struggling to make ends meet now more than ever before.

Credit: Yamil Lage / Getty Images

The pandemic has hit the island’s economy particularly hard. Much of the island relies on agricultural and tourism – two sectors that have been decimated by Coronavirus.

As a result, many Cubans are struggling to afford everyday items. Rice – which used to sell for about $13 Cuban pesos per kilo is now going for triple that.

In an effort to allow Cubans better access to goods, the government has began recognizing the U.S. dollar as official currency. This is extraordinary as mere possession of U.S. dollars was long considered a criminal offense. However, the measure draws a line between the haves and have-nots, one that runs even deeper than it did before the pandemic.

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