LGBTIQA+ rights activist Peter Tatchell turns down the Queen

LGBT+ right activist Peter Tatchell has turned down an official invitation to be one of a handful of British “National Treasures” to take pride of place in the finale of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Pageant this Sunday outside Buckingham Palace.

The human rights campaigner says the Queen has snubbed the LGBT+ community for decades.

“Monarchy is not compatible with democracy. Making the monarch head of state excludes worthy Black and Asian Britons from holding the highest state office in the country. The Queen has snubbed the LGBT+ community for 70 years.”

Instead of attending the Jubilee Pageant, Tatchell will be spending the day speaking in support of women’s and trans rights at the How The Light Gets In Festival in Hay.

The formal invitation to be part of the Jubilee came from Nicholas Coleridge CBE and Sir Michael Lockett KVCO, the heads of the Platinum Jubilee Pageant organising committee. They described the activist as a celebrated and admired Briton.

“Dear Peter Tatchell…I am delighted to be writing to invite you to join us for this historic celebration…For the Finale to the show, staged immediately outside Buckingham Palace, we are gathering an ensemble of over one hundred ‘National Treasures’ to join us as we pay tribute to Her Majesty. ‘National Treasures’ means the celebrated, respected and admired people from many spheres…We would be delighted if you would join this group.”

Peter Tatchell replied to decline the invitation citing his republican views and the fact the Queen had ignored the queer community for decades.

“ From one human being to another, I wish the Queen well. However, I will respectfully decline. I am a life-long republican and do not support the institution of monarchy. A hereditary head of state is, in my view, incompatible with democracy, where positions of state should be decided by, and accountable to, the public. Royalty is a relic of feudalism. I see it as a symbol of privilege and inequality. Well, that’s my considered opinion.” Tatchell responded.

“Moreover, I might add that the Queen’s neglectful stance towards the LGBT+ community is deeply regrettable. To my knowledge, the words lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender have never publicly passed her lips and she has never visited or been a patron of any LGBT+ charity. To be ignored for 70 years feels like a deliberate snub.”

Back in 2012 Tatchell highlighted that the long reigning monarch had never acknowledged gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender citizens.

The Queen mentioned gay people for the first time two years later. In 2014 she congratulated London’s Gay and Lesbian Switchboard on their 40th anniversary.

In 2016 the Queen’s cousin Lord Mountbatten became the first member of the royal family to publicly identify as a non-heterosexual.

OIP Staff

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