Gov. Phil Murphy (D) vowed to continue fighting President Donald Trump (R), particularly over LGBTQ rights and equality, at the 19th annual pride festival in Jersey City yesterday.
“Just in case you didn’t know, Phil Murphy made sure, made New Jersey, only the second state in the nation, that the history of LGBTQ Fight for Equality is enshrined in the public schools curriculum,” LGBTQ advocate Harmonica Sunbeam said on a Newark Avenue stage yesterday afternoon.
“He enacted the Babs Siperstein Act to allow transgender New Jerseyans to receive a birth certificate that properly reflects who they are,” she continued to more loud applause.
Sunbeam, who has hosted Drag Queen Story Time events in Jersey City and Hoboken this year, also said that Murphy started an interdepartmental transgender task force within state government, as well as joining other states in a federal lawsuit pushing back on the Trump administration’s ban on transgender service members.
Murphy, sporting a pink and green Hawaiian shirt and lei, told the thousands in attendance that “we rise and fall as one family in New Jersey,” calling the LGBTQ community the center of that family.
“I can’t tell you how honored I am to be with ya, but at the same time, how much work I continue to need to do. Harmonica listed a whole lot list of things that we’re incredibly proud of. It is not the end of the struggle: we all know that,” the governor stated.
“Particularly, and I don’t want to get too far down this path, particularly with this president. What he is throwing at the community, so many communities, but in particular this community – day in and day out, the hostility, the us versus them, the anger, the real policies that are coming down from Washington – so the struggle is far from over.”
Additionally, Murphy stressed that “we” would win the fight for equality, also commending the “brothers and sisters who came before us,” such as those who were a part of the 1969 Stonewall riots in Manhattan.
The festival flooded Newark Avenue with rainbow flags, stickers, t-shirts and other paraphernalia, as men, women, children and pets all celebrated the LGBTQ community.
The Hudson County Democratic Organization’s LGBTQ Caucus, led by openly gay Hoboken 1st Ward Councilman Mike DeFusco, was one of dozens of organizations who partook in the festivities.
Other entities that participated included the Act Now Foundation, the Liberty Humane Society, Reneu Energy, the Jersey City Police Department, the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office, the NYPD, among many, many others.