I have a nuanced relationship to pride, especially how commodified and narrow it can be and how it can feel that it's become a celebration for affluent cis people. But for me, it's also a time of reflection and celebration for those I call my queer and trans chosen family. I'm so grateful to have built those connections and to continue to build them and build new ones.
If you haven't already, check out my 2021 NPR Tiny Desk Contest Entry, "Giants."
"Giants" are the people, structures, paradigms, or ideologies in our life that loom over us and keep us from living lives of dignity and abundance — from "flying," metaphorically speaking. It could be anything, but this song has specific meaning as a queer South Asian person especially as it is Pride month. I shirk any "traditional values" that do not recognize my full humanity and I "fly." And as I "fly" higher, my shadow gets bigger the farther I get from the ground. No matter how "small" I am compared to these "giants," I soar high above and make big shadows too.
Digital desi pride
I'll be performing for Gay Gaze and Queer Art Exchange digital pride again. Find tickets here... https://artery.is/suidm/showcases
Covid solidarity fund
In partnership with the Tides Foundation, a transnational coalition of Dalit and Muslim organizers, technologists, artists and public health practitioners has established an emergency $5M fund to support South Asia's most vulnerable communities -- caste-oppressed people, religious minorities, LGBTQ* people and rural communities -- in moving from crisis to not just recovery, but toward equitable, thriving futures.
Here's this loving kindness prayer that brought some peace to me this week...
House gospel video
Here's this house gospel video that made me oh so happy...
Some zines to check out
SAADA queer brown feelings
I submitted to SAADA queer brown feelings some months back (hear mine here). If you're South Asian, I highly recommend it. The experience was lovely. Mustafa has done a wonderful job curating:
Black history month
"Black Music Month started after the hitmaking Philadelphia soul producer Kenny Gamble visited Nashville in the 1970s and was inspired by the Country Music Association (CMA), a powerful organization that underlined the genre’s economic strength by spearheading Country Music Month every October. Gamble and other Black music community leaders shared a similar sense of unity and knew they were making a significant economic impact. But no organization like the CMA existed to demonstrate or mobilize that message. So in 1978, Gamble started the Black Music Association, quickly building a network of high-level supporters including Stevie Wonder, Motown Records founder Berry Gordy, and Rev. Jesse Jackson.
In less than a year, Gamble—along with media strategist Dyana Williams, and radio DJ Ed Wright—founded Black Music Month. On June 7, 1979, President Jimmy Carter held the first-ever Black Music Month celebration, where scores of Black celebrities congregated on the White House lawn. “There had been Black people in and out of the White House, but never to the extent of what happened that day,” Williams recalls."(1)
Learn about the case against BAPS (Hindu temple in NJ) for violations against Dalit workers (trigger warning)
M4BL Reparations NOW Toolkit
Beautiful quote about grief
"The dandelion is the individual that has died," she said. "Suddenly you blow the dandelion and it goes into all these pieces. But the dandelion is still there. It's just dispersed into many things."(1)