Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Gay Pride....really?

This month in cities all across the country people are celebrating Gay Pride. In many cities there will be parties, concerts, games and a parade. In Minneapolis a few hundred thousand people will line Hennepin Avenue to watch a parade. Many of those same people will also walk through Loring Park and visit the booths set up by businesses and corporations that want to be seen as “gay friendly” or more importantly want ‘our’ money.

I have often had mixed feelings about the entire celebration. Once again I find myself wondering when the ‘gay community’ is going to get with it and get serious about what I think the parades etc should be about – Equality for all. I find it amazing that in cities all across the country we can get hundreds of thousands of people to come out for a parade but yet we can not seem to organize any real effort to push for gay rights. I mean think about it. If the 300 + thousand people that show up on Hennepin Avenue or the 300+ thousand that will line Boys Town in Chicago all showed up for a rally at their state capitol or wrote letters to their elected officials – perhaps, we just might see some serious movement on the issue. I have never understood why there is so much effort to get the “gay community” to support certain people that are running for office (you can bet HRC will be at every pride event asking for money and showing you a list of politicians that are ‘gay friendly”) but yet no real effort to have an organized ‘the community’ to get involved, to have a mass demonstration, boycott or something.

The civil rights movement of the 60s had boycotts, sit ins, marches etc. What do we have? A parade, a party, guys dancing shirtless or in drag, everyone waving a rainbow flag saying “give me my rights” But yet, I bet more than half of them could not be pulled away from there circuit party, beer bust or Internet chat room to get out and do something meaningful to see that the words “equality under the law” actually mean something

I am also not sure what we are suppose to be celebrating. Is it because in many states you can still be fired because your gay, or denied housing because your gay?. Or is it because same sex marriage is legal in 5 states and still illegal in 46 others? or is it because brave men and women are being kicked out of the military because they are gay? Or is it because years after Matthew Shepard died we still don’t have a federal hate crime law? Oh, surely it is because we now have a President that understands ‘us’ and will finally give us the rights we deserve?

I don’t know about anyone else…but I don't feel like having a party.

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