Protesters dance for gay rights, health care at Philadelphia 'Queer Rager'

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Friday, January 27, 2017

On Wednesday night more than 1,000 protesters, most of them part of the LGBT community, staged a dance protest they called the "Queer Rager" outside the Leows Hotel in Philadelphia's Center City, where the U.S. Republican Party has arranged a retreat. Gay rights and health care featured amongst the issues raised.

Protesters expressed concerns about traditional gay issues, but Republican U.S. President Donald Trump's impending repeal of the Affordable Care Act, law enforcement, climate change and other issues were also visible. Signs included "Health Care Is a Human Right," "BROWN BLACK LGBTQ LIVES MATTER," and "Trans Bodies Are Beautiful."

Titled "Queer Rage(r): Guerrilla Dance Party," participants were invited to dance and carry signs. Like the Women's March last Saturday, this protest was organized partially through Facebook.

Cquote1.svg The focus for tonight is to call attention to the ways in which queer and trans, especially queer and trans black and brown people, do not have access to a lot of healthcare Cquote2.svg

—Hanako Franz, event organizer

Event organizer Hanako Franz told ABC Channel 6, "The focus for tonight is to call attention to the ways in which queer and trans, especially queer and trans black and brown people, do not have access to a lot of healthcare."

"Get ready to WERK it out," reads the event's official Facebook page. "As they try to take away our health care, to police Black, Brown, Trans and Queer bodies, to regulate our bodies, we’re here to say #WeAreQueer #WeAreHere #WeWillDance."

This is part of several events, including a rally by health care professionals, expected to continue until today, when the retreat ends. One event, which has been given the go-ahead by the city of Philadelphia, is expected to draw 3,000 participants.


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