CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — June is the kickoff for the Pride festival in the city of Corpus Christi, and Texas lawmakers have filed dozens ofbills affecting the LGBTQIA+ community, which will cause pride to look different this year.
Pride Corpus Christi has celebrated and supported the members of the LGBTQIA+ community for more than six years.
Jonathan Swindle, the board president for Pride Corpus Christi, said this year they plan on celebrating more boldly.
“Pride Corpus Christi has really been a celebration of the LGBTQIA+ community and its inclusivity in the city of Corpus Christi. Really, we focus largely in June on our Pride week celebration,” Swindle said.
According to the Southern Poverty Law Center the number of anti-LGBT hate groups soared from 43% in 2018 to 65% in 2021 and with the different bills Texas lawmakers are pushing for, it’s not making things any easier for members of the community.
“With the narrative taking place on the national discourse as well as in Austin, it's really ignited our fuel for what pride is about. Last year it was largely about a celebration, this year it's a little more of a rally and a protest,” Swindle said.
Because of several hate crimes seen across the United States, organizers of the Corpus Christi Pride festivities have increased security measures as a precautionary tool to keep participates safe.
“Last year we stepped it up very significantly," Swindle said. "We worked with the Corpus Christi Police Department and the chief there to ensure that we had; there were drones, there were police towers, there were units on bicycles,” he said. “They were also at different points where we had the blockades along the road and such.”
However, in spite of the obstacle that the LGBTQIA+ community is facing, Swindle believed that this storm will past.
“You know there was once a time in American history we thought it appropriate to build statues for slave owners," he said. "We’ve torn those down since. Just as much as these laws they think is appropriate to put into place, time will tell, they will be struck down, and consigned to history.”
For a full list of the Pride events happening in Corpus Christi, please click here. Also if you would like to volunteer for the festivities this year, click here.
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