Pink Triangle Park + Memorial is the first permanent, free-standing memorial in the United States to the LGBT experience during this chapter of history. It was built by the Castro/Eureka Valley Neighborhood Association (EVNA), the neighborhood association for the Castro, Upper Market and Duboce Triangle areas. The Park continues to evolve with the hard work of residents and businesses in the area, and with the generous support from the Mayor’s Neighborhood Beautification Fund, the Department of Public Works and the San Francisco Arts Commission.
The fifteen granite pylons rise in remembrance of the estimated fifteen thousand gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender victims who were persecuted, imprisoned and murdered during and after the reign of Adolf Hitler’s Nazi Germany.
Throughout history, there are times when prejudice overwhelms all reason and humanity. Such was the case under the Nazis. But even after the Nazis’ defeat, the discrimination against the LGBT community continued, using Paragraph 175 of the penal code. Briefly freed from concentration camps by Allied troops, those prisoners wearing the pink triangle were returned to finish their sentences. Those who survived two imprisonments emerged as second-class citizens, even under democratically elected governments.
Pink Triangle Park + Memorial is a place of remembrance, reflection and education — a physical reminder of how persecution of any individual or single group of people inevitably damages all humanity. Please pause for a moment to reflect upon the moral and spiritual aspects of that time and to embrace the individual responsibilities all people share as citizens of a democracy.