sarah hegazi <3

heartbroken by the death of sarah hegazi, a 30 year old queer activist who was imprisoned, placed in solitary confinement, and tortured by egyptian police for raising a rainbow flag at a concert. she was given asylum in canada and had been living there, in exile, since 2018.

in her suicide note she wrote: ‘to my siblings – i tried to find redemption and failed, forgive me. to my friends – the journey was harsh and i am too weak to resist, forgive me. to the world – you were cruel to a great extent, but i forgive.’

the tributes by her community are beautiful and heartrending. ‘a reminder as queer people, that we are not meant to survive…’

as we rise up against police brutality here in the US and thousands march for black trans lives in brooklyn, i cannot help but think about the broader policing of bodies and minds, of the vulnerability of queer and trans lives, of the state’s brutal mechanisms of course, but also our co-option of its violent borders and othering in order to demarcate and maintain our own heteronormative privilege.

talking about the policing of borders, perhaps political asylum is not the panacea for oppression elsewhere, but rather less imperial policing of movements for justice and democracy emerging in the rest of the world. it would allow people to stay home, where they can be connected, supported, and centered.

we have so much work to do. rest in power sarah.

Hegazi, shown here in Cairo, was arrested after raising a rainbow flag at a Mashrou’ Leila concert in Cairo last year. She was released on bail after three months in jail.

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