— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) June 21, 2021
Cheering read from the Washington Post — “‘We’re here, we survived and we’re going to be okay’“:
… Navajo Nation Pride began as a small event hosted outside the offices of a feminist collective in Window Rock’s Ch’ihootso Indian Market Place four years ago. Since then, the annual event has grown into the country’s largest Indigenous Pride — peaking at an estimated 7,000 attendees in 2019 — with year-long programs and scholarships dedicated to supporting LGBTQ2S+ youth and leaders.
This year, Pride came as the Navajo Nation, which suffered some of the worst effects of the pandemic, leads the country in vaccinations. Cars adorned with gay and trans pride flags, signs reading “Diyingo ‘Adaanitsíískéés” — Navajo for “We are sacred” — and rainbow streamers paraded from the Navajo Nation Museum through central Window Rock and to the Navajo Nation Council Chambers.
There, attendees settled in folding chairs spaced six feet apart to hear speakers address movements to reclaim Indigenous LGBTQ2S+ identity, the ongoing HIV/AIDS crisis among American Indians and Alaskan Natives, and the work to pass inclusive legislation such as the Navajo Nation Equality Act. The theme of the year was “the sacred resilience of Indigenous womxn.”
“This year is our fourth year and in Diné culture we understand that the number four is a very sacred number,” invoking the four directions and the four sacred colors, said Navajo Nation Pride’s youth director Geronimo Louie (Navajo). “We are a matriarchal society at heart and through our teachings and understandings and our origin stories, women have always been leading and paving the way for all of us as Indigenous people.”…