Right-Wing Groups Target Pride Events Amid Rising Anti-LGBTQ Rhetoric

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06/16/2022

Panda Dulce was just about to begin her Drag Queen Story Hour on Saturday in San Lorenzo, Calif., when a group of eight to 10 men marched into the library yelling homophobic and transphobic slurs. When the men arrived—including one wearing a shirt with an image of an AK-47 that said “kill yr local pedophile”—everyone else fell silent, she said. “They called me a groomer, a pedophile, a tranny, an ‘it,’” Panda Dulce said in a statement shared with TIME. “My heart hammered. I had a complete freeze response.” Law enforcement responded quickly, no one was hurt, and the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office is now investigating the men, who were identified as members of the far-right Proud Boys organization, for their role in a potential hate crime. But the incident left the LGBT community in San Lorenzo shaken. It was not alone.

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