We’ve Interviewed Queer Environmentalist, Isaias Hernandez, to gain insights about their opinion on the intersectional environmentalism. Read the excerpts below:
By Akshita Mehta
- Please share your story of coming out to the world as an intersectional environmentalist, and what made you realize that the queer community need to be represented in the climate justice movement?
@queerbrownvegan- My coming out story as an intersectional environmentalist was grown out of my passion for education, creativity, and being queer. At the age of 21, I was confident of who I was and wanted to be vulnerable with myself and the community to showcase the diversity in the environmental movement. For me, I recognized at a young age that the environmental movement was never diverse, it primarily centered on White voices. The same white voices who continued to center BIPOC voices, continued to center themselves which confused me of why they weren’t doing a larger action to decenter themselves in conversations. Queer communities have always existed in multi-dimensional spaces and are a part of frontline communities as nearly 40% of homeless youth identify as LGBTQ+
- How are struggles for queer liberation connected to those for climate justice? How did you realize this was an important issue that required attention?
@queerbrownvegan- Queer liberation comes from Black and Trans liberation writers, authors, activists, and revolutionaries. For me, I recognize my own privilege as someone who is a Cis-man that we are not free until they are free, which is why it is important that I too amplify their voices and share my platform. I realized at a younger age when I talked to a lot of my friends who were Queer and homeless explaining the needs of what they had to do to survive when there were heat waves, thunderstorms, and other extreme weather conditions.
- What values does the queer community bring to the fight for climate justice?
@queerbrownvegan- Queer communities bring a multi-dimensional approach that allows them to think beyond the binary system we live in today. Presenting resiliency climate solutions requires a Queer perspective because Queer People of Color are at the forefront of these environmental movements.
- Can you share any incident related to the climate action movement, where you felt that queer people have been excluded?
@queerbrownvegan- It depends on what we are talking about, I feel as if most disaster relief programs aren’t center on Queer / Disabled community needs. We must recognize that Queer people have often been left out of the conversation but are the first ones on the ground to redistribute mutual aid resources.
- A message for the upcoming generation of queer environmentalists.
@queerbrownvegan- Be vulnerable while cultivating a safe space community that is characterized and defined by yourself. Do not let those who dislike you prevent the work that you are doing for your community. If people focus more on you than their own biases and oppressive systems they uphold, then they are the issue, not you.