WASHINGTON - With only a couple of days before the inauguration, hundreds of people gathered outside the Washington D.C. home of Vice President-elect Mike Pence for a dance party.
The groups WERK for Peace and Disrupt J20 have teamed up to organize this event known as the “Queer Dance Party.” Participants met up at the Friendship Heights Metro station at 6 p.m. and marched about a mile on the streets to Pence’s home in D.C.'s Chevy Chase neighborhood.
On the Facebook page for the event, it says, “We plan on leaving behind [biodegradable] glitter and rainbow paraphinalia that he can NEVER forget. #WeAreQueer #WeAreHere #WeWillDance That's right, get ready to WERK it and tell Daddy Pence: homo/transphobia is not tolerated in our country!”
It was a very lively atmosphere as music blared throughout the evening, but the gathering remained peaceful as D.C. police and the Secret Service were on hand as the large crowd danced in the neighborhood. After over an hour, the block party finally came to an end and the crowd began to leave at around 8:30 p.m.
"We had a dance protest in response to the bigotry and hate that Mike Pence purports through his policies and actions," said Firas Nasr, the founding organizer of WERK for Peace. "We had hundreds of people come out to assert our bodies and space and state that we are here, we are queer and we will dance."
A D.C. high school senior student carrying an American flag who came by to watch the dance event said he came down to the neighborhood to simply display his support for the country.
"I support their rights as the LGBT community, but I believe this is not exactly the way to go about bringing unity to the country," the student said. "I believe this was a great demonstration by them and a great demonstration of their constitutional rights, but I believe we need to find a peaceful, more helpful way to come together as a united nation."
WERK for Peace describes itself as “a queer-based grassroots movement that uses dance to promote peace.” DisruptJ20 is a group that is planning protests during the inauguration.