Tell Creating Change: Lift the Ban on Palestine! Stop Pinkwashing, Islamophobia, and Antisemitism
The Task Force has been increasing its alignment with Israel propaganda groups and against queer and trans activists working on racial justice and Palestinian liberation. At 2016’s Creating Change Conference, the Task Force was asked to stand for justice on these issues and faced protest when it reversed its own decision and aligned with the Israel propaganda organization, A Wider Bridge. Since then, despite empty claims of neutrality, the Task Force has continued to signal that it has chosen to align with Israel propaganda groups and has instituted a ban on all things Palestine.
At the 2018 conference, the Task Force was again faced with protest over their censorship of workshops that could potentially include Palestine as a topic of discussion. #CancelPinkwashing organizers staged a guerrilla session in the halls of the conference to educate on pinkwashing, which drew over 500 attendees, and also protested a Task Force fundraiser headed by an Israeli party group. Protest organizers also discovered that Jewish and Muslim programming was being censored to enforce Creating Change’s ban. This included greatly limiting the number of Jewish and Muslim spaces at the conference compared to previous years, and at the last minute replacing a dialogue about antisemitism and Islamophobia with a Christian Task Force employee led healing circle on the Charlottesville “Unite the Right” fascist rally.
This year, as a direct result of the Task Force’s ban on Palestine, Creating Change again rejected all workshop proposals related to anti-pinkwashing activism. While in 2018, Jewish and Muslim programming was severely limited, this year, Creating Change organizers have failed to include any non-caucus Jewish or Muslim faith workshops on the conference program. This violent erasure reinforces the antisemitism and Islamophobia already deeply rooted in Creating Change, and creates an additional barrier to meaningful conversations about Palestinian liberation.
1) Lift the informal ban on Palestine and stop pinkwashing Israeli apartheid. Commit to honoring the call for boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) of Israel and Israeli institutions.
2) Publicly apologize to the queer and trans Muslim, Jewish, and MENA/SWANA communities, particularly queer and trans Palestinians, for the Task Force’s role in deliberately silencing and censoring these communities and their organizing.
3) Commit to providing time and space for workshops focused on queer and trans decolonization work that includes queer and trans Palestinian liberation.
4) Commit to providing time and space for Jewish and Muslim faith programming that is equal to the time provided for Christian faith programming.