Beyond Equality Ride
March 13-26 #RideWithSoul
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Beyond Equality Ride?
The Beyond Equality Ride is a 17-day Southeast tour of colleges where spiritual violence harms LGBTQI students.
The first Equality Ride began in 2006, visiting 19 colleges across the U.S. with homophobic and transphobic policies. Since Soulforce has begun the Equality Ride program, we have visited 101 campuses, over 30 of which have since changed their policies to be more affirming of LGBTQI identities. At each of these schools we have met with countless students, faculty, staff, community members, and administration at schools to spark compassionate, fierce, and nonviolent dialogue about faith at the intersections of marginalized identities.
Why is the Ride happening?
The Ride has been dormant for several years as Soulforce has grown into a more intentional stance around issues of race, class, gender, sexuality, and religion. As we witness the actions of the 50+ Christian colleges that have filed for waivers to Title IX, we are called to be brave and reach out to each school, in the flurry of Title IX waivers, and ask each school to 1) refuse to file for, or give back, a waiver and 2) establish policies that recognize the preciousness and inherent worth of our bodies as young trans and queer people of color.
We go to schools in solidarity with those young people like us who cannot tell their stories for fear of violence on their bodies. Learn more about our greater Title IX campaign here.
Where is the Ride going?
You can check out our Ride route here.
How does the Ride choose which schools to go to?
Sometimes we choose a school because they have a particularly egregious policy that is spiritually harmful. Sometimes a school does not have that. Sometimes it's because the school is willing to welcome us and engage in dialogue. Sometimes it's because a school refuses to engage in dialogue. There are many reasons why we may decide to visit a school, and we communicate with schools and the greater public about why we choose to stop on that specific campus.
Why is the Ride only going to places in the Southeast?
As the saying goes, "As goes the South, so goes the nation." Our politics, our bodies, and our principles ground a major part of our programming in the Southeast U.S. We know, from lived experience and from collective political analysis, that the South has been historically used as a testing ground for fundamentalist laws and policies that the Religious Right hopes to spread around the world. Those of us who live here feel the dire need to attend to our people at home, as the South is one of the most underfunded regions of the U.S. in terms of LGBT-related funding.
What do Riders do when they go to a school?
Historically, we have come to schools and hosted forums, gave presentations, guided classroom discussion, met with student body leaders, professors, and administrators, and engaged in casual dialogue with students, all on the intersections of faith, race, class, gender, sexuality, gender, and violence. At many of our school visits, we have been the first openly affirming queer voice invited into the discussion of sexuality and faith.
When schools do not allow us on campus for one reason or another, we find creative ways to reach students: direct action; displays of art, music, or other spiritual care; open protest; creating safe spaces for students off-campus; and much more.
Who is on the Ride?
Meet our Riders here!
I want to get involved!
You can visit our Support page here.