Istanbul will once again see a memorable 2014 LGBTI Pride Week in Istanbul between June 23rd
Eagerly anticipated each year at the end of June … Multiplying and flourishing as
“If you are not there, we are missing one” becomes “if you are not there we are missing many”…Celebrating with a wide variety of activities ranging from workshops and panels to parties and performances…Making homophobes and transphobes shiver with the Hormone Tomato Awards…Giving strength to the LGBT movement, solidifying our politics….Painting Istiklal Avenue in rainbow colors with tens of thousands of people… Making us say “so good that we are here for one another, that we bring one another into presence by coming in contact in all areas of life; long live our solidarity!”

As we celebrate the 22nd year of Pride Week, we will also be marking the 10th year of the Genetically Modified Tomato Awards, the nightmare of homophobes and transphobes! Once again, we will distribute the tomatoes with the highest hormones! Do not miss the Hormone Tomato Award!

Do not promise anyone else!

What do we mean by LGBTI pride?
It refers to the pride LGBTI people, that is, lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex individuals feel in their sexual orientation and gender identity.  Pride is the opposite of “shame” which has been used throughout history to dominate and oppress LGBTI individuals. It is an affirmation, a way to say “We do not feel shame in our identities; on the contrary, we are proud.”

The starting point for Pride Activities:O.K., so where does this celebration come from? What are we celebrating? This is in fact an anniversary.  About forty years ago, on June 26th, 1969, in a bar in New York city called Stonewall Inn, trans, bisexual, lesbian and gay friends rose up collectively against the injustices heaped upon them. They did not remain silent in the face of police and societal oppression; they stood up against police violence.  In the following days, the street where the bar was located was dilled with LGBTI people who came from all over the city. This was a sing that nothing would be the same any more.

History of the Pride Week in Turkey:
In Turkey, an LGBTI group for the first time wanted to hold an event in 1993. The event “Sexual Freedom Activities” was banned by the governor. Soon after this, the first LGBTI organization was established in Istanbul.  Since 1992, Pride Week Activities are hosted by LGBTIIstanbul and organized by a voluntary working group.