Against the tide – By Peggy Cidor

‘Remember the suffragists – they were also threatened, hated and cursed. But today, who argues with their cause?” asks Ayelet Shnorr, the newly elected chair of Open House, the gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender community center of Jerusalem. “It’s the same with us. It’s a long struggle, and a part of it has to be done in the streets, the specific place that some people don’t want us to walk.” Shnorr’s predecessor, Noa Sattath, is actually the organization’s director, and although their style is different, they share the same goal: “to increase the visibility of the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender [GLBT] community.” They also share the same position on methods of reaching that goal, namely the Gay Pride Parade scheduled, at press time, for June 21.

“The police’s job is to see that the parade can take place safely in the streets of Jerusalem,” notes Shnorr, who has a pleasant and gentle personality. “We expect them not to surrender to the threats and violence of opponents to our parade.”

Shnorr admits that much of the opposition to the parade also comes from non-haredim, even from the secular.