Sadiq Khan, the Mayor of London, has spoken out against transgender people being “stigmatised, demonised or weaponised” in so-called ‘culture wars’.
Speaking to GAY TIMES at Pride in London on 1 July, Khan emphasised the importance of keeping the community at the forefront of this year’s event and due to the ongoing stigma they face in both politics and the media.
“Listen, one of the things that’s the worst of all in politics is people being caught up in the crossfire of a ‘culture war’,” he said.
“And we see every day, not just so-called ‘jokes’ made by the Prime Minister behind closed doors, [but also] things in the mainstream media, clickbait from certain people where the trans community are used as clickbait or as pawns.”
Khan further explained that the trans community “should not be stigmatised, demonised or weaponised” and instead called for “recognition that this community is a vulnerable community that needs our support”.
“I’m quite clear, an attack on one minority is an attack on all minorities and an attack on all of us,” he added.
Discussing the importance of Pride more generally, Khan said it continues to be essential as it serves as a chance to “recognise things aren’t perfect” and that “we’ve still got to campaign and protest”.
He called on the government to make sure “there are laws in place to protect all minorities, particularly the trans community” and urged it to ban so-called ‘conversion therapy’ for all.
“But listen, as long as I’m the Mayor, London is going to carry on being a beacon to the rest of the world when it comes to LGBTQIA+ rights, but also this community, that sense of belonging, that you’re free to be who you want to be and you’re free to love you want to love,” he continued.
More than one million people celebrated Pride in London this year
Huge crowds took to the streets of London on to take part in this year’s Pride celebrations.
More than 30,000 participants from around 600 organisations got involved in this year’s Parade, which began at Hyde Park Corner and ended at Whitehall.
Organisers estimated that more than one million people took part in this year’s Pride festivities more generally, which coincided with the 51st anniversary of the UK’s first Pride march.
The day featured headline performances from Adam Lambert, Idina Menzel and Todrick Hall, with other stars such as Eden Hunter, Rita Ora and Jack Hawitt each delivering show-stopping sets.
Pride in London’s ‘Never March Alone’ campaign was featured prominently throughout the day, which emphasised the importance of supporting the trans community.