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Posted under: News

Google Doodle Honors Iconic Trans Activist Marsha P. Johnson As Pride Month Comes To A Close

Google displayed an illustration of trans icon Marsha P. Johnson in honor of Pride Month.

In honor of the last day of Pride Month, Google posted an illustration of Black trans icon Marsha P. Johnson.

The company said in a statement that it wanted to honor Black trans women and the LGBTQ+ community as the commemorative month winds down.

The doodle depicts the famous picture of Johnson wearing an arrangement of flowers on a headband in front of a backdrop filled with pride flags.

"The modern-day LGBTQ+ movement was born out of the heroic activism of Black trans womxn and trans womxn of color. Pioneers like Marsha P. Johnson and Sylvia Rivera helped lead the fight against hate and injustice, and stood up to police misconduct towards the LGBTQ+ community during the Stonewall Uprising of 1969," the Google statement read. 

The statement adds that Google plans to donate $500,000 to the Marsha P. Johnson Institute, which is working ardently to end the rampant violence against "Black and Black Latinx trans womxn across the United States."

"Over 50 years later, Pride continues to be a protest for equity, visibility, and justice. For as much progress as the movement has brought, there is still more work to do. ... This funding, which builds on Google’s recent commitment to support LGBTQ+ community organizations around the world, will provide direct cash assistance to Black trans people through the organization’s COVID-19 relief efforts. The Marsha P. Johnson Institute is fiscally sponsored by the Social Good Fund," the statement added. 

Earlier this month, Google announced in a blog post it was expanding its support beyond organizations based in the United States. The company has donated $1.2 million to over 70 organizations around the world.

Google.org will also donate another $1.2 million to The Trevor Project, which has dedicated itself to suicide prevention and mental health services for LGBTQ+ youth. In a blog post, the company noted that Black LGBTQ+ youth have the same mental health issues as all LGBTQ+ youth, yet "they’re significantly less likely to receive professional mental health care, and Black children die by suicide at nearly twice the rate of their white peers."

"The Trevor Project’s continued targeted outreach to LGBTQ+ Black youth is incredibly important, and the organization offers resources to help allies be more supportive. In addition, a new cohort of Google.org Fellows will help The Trevor Project use natural language processing to automate the moderation of crisis content on its online forums and instruct counselors through a virtual conversation simulator training," the blog post stated. 

In the post, Google included a slideshow featuring Johnson at the first and second Christopher Street Liberation Day Marches in 1970 and 1972. Additionally, the tech company released a longer article of short blurbs from the LGBTQ+ organizations it is supporting with donations and technology resources. 

Johnson is known for her role in the 1969 Stonewall uprisings and for founding the Street Transvestite Action Revolutionaries with Sylvia Rivera. 

Black trans women and men continue to die in high numbers each year from both community and partner violence. Police have contributed to the violence as well. Police in Tallahassee, Florida, killed 38-year-old Tony McDade, a trans man, last month.

According to the Human Rights Campaign, at least 16 transgender or gender-nonconforming people have been fatally shot or killed by other violent means this year. 

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