Does the Gay community have a PR problem?

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    Feb 14, 2011 6:56 AM GMT
    This concern has been echoed by myself and several other members on RJ and I just wanted to get everyone else’s opinion on the matter.

    I honestly don't believe there are any other minority groups in US history that have handled their PR situation worse than the gay community. The #1 rule of PR is to make yourself relatable to broader society, and I truly think we fail miserably in this regard.

    I hate to use anecdotal evidence to discuss this, but I think in this case it is warranted. Firstly, and I know this topic has been beaten to death, but the overt sexualisation of what it means to be gay in my opinion seriously hinders our fight for equal rights. During Pride I was shocked to see floats with naked dudes on them and other floats representing gay porn studios where the guys were throwing out condoms and lube into the crowd. How on earth is it legal one day out of the year to strut around NYC or London naked behind the veil of gay Pride? I'm sure MLK is turning over in his grave watching this piss poor attempt for respect and equal rights.

    I was also reading an article about how on the LGBT day at Disney Land they make a whole area of the park adults only where gay porn studios and sex toy producers could set up stands. What on earth does this have to do with being gay and why is no one standing up against this? This is an amusement park for kids for gods sake.

    I have voiced my opinion on this issue before and have been branded self loathing and homophobic, but I just don't understand how wanting our community to behave with a little decorum in public is homophobic?

    Maybe I am missing something? I would love to hear other opinions regarding this issue.
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    Feb 14, 2011 7:26 AM GMT
    trice55 saidThis concern has been echoed by myself and several other members on RJ and I just wanted to get everyone else’s opinion on the matter.

    I honestly don't believe there are any other minority groups in US history that have handled their PR situation worse than the gay community. The #1 rule of PR is to make yourself relatable to broader society, and I truly think we fail miserably in this regard.

    I hate to use anecdotal evidence to discuss this, but I think in this case it is warranted. Firstly, and I know this topic has been beaten to death, but the overt sexualisation of what it means to be gay in my opinion seriously hinders our fight for equal rights. During Pride I was shocked to see floats with naked dudes on them and other floats representing gay porn studios where the guys were throwing out condoms and lube into the crowd. How on earth is it legal one day out of the year to strut around NYC or London naked behind the veil of gay Pride? I'm sure MLK is turning over in his grave watching this piss poor attempt for respect and equal rights.

    I was also reading an article about how on the LGBT day at Disney Land they make a whole area of the park adults only where gay porn studios and sex toy producers could set up stands. What on earth does this have to do with being gay and why is no one standing up against this? This is an amusement park for kids for gods sake.

    I have voiced my opinion on this issue before and have been branded self loathing and homophobic, but I just don't understand how wanting our community to behave with a little decorum in public is homophobic?

    Maybe I am missing something? I would love to hear other opinions regarding this issue.


    GLAAD AND HRC are an embarrassment I was intending to make a thread about those to so called groups soon.

    I also think things like Gay Days at Disney are unnecessary, as are "hate crimes" and Gay marriages.

    I honestly believe a big cause of much of anti-gay backlashes are due to the marriage thing. In my opinion the entire narrow focus on that issue makes their rights look like a mockery. The US is a pretty safe place for Homosexuals, it's not as if their being out right killed for it liking other countries. I think the best thing for many Homosexuals to do is quit this fight for marriage, boycott GLAAD/HRC, stop Gay Days at Disney, repeal Hate crime laws, and just seek to be mentors for youth who happen to be growing up Homosexual. Also stop using the following terms that are bandied about on this forum:

    "Straight acting"

    "gay mannerisms"

    "obviously gay"

    "queens"

    "gay culture"

    "gay lifestyle"

    "gay ghetto" wtf is a gay ghetto anyway?

    and most importantly stop playing the Divide and Conquer game
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    Feb 14, 2011 7:30 AM GMT
    You are totally missing the point.
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    Feb 14, 2011 7:37 AM GMT
    trice55 saidYou are totally missing the point.


    How so? I went a bit off on a tangent I concur. I believe that the entire glorious struggle for "gay rights" is very much a sham and distraction issue. However, those specific events that you mention at Gay Days at Disney don't help, it may hinder progress. What type of PR would you prefer? If you really believe it important to stop things like The Pride thing it wouldn't be hard to find like minded individuals like yourself to address the issue. Honestly who cares if you are labeled as homophobic, especially if you are Gay yourself? IF YOU SERIOUSLY believe Pride/Gay Days are inappropriate and aren't doing much to help Equal Rights then it's your duty to stand against them.

    Be the change you wish to see in the world.
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    Feb 14, 2011 9:08 AM GMT
    You can't celebrate romantic love and you can't commercialize it the way you can sexual lust - that's why the floats at Pride are the way they are. Love just isn't something you can theme a parade around.

    Also gay porn and sex toys at Disney? DIsney? I think you're making this shit up or you read it in The Onion.

    In the end though, a major part of how we differ from society is our sex and I don't think we should be ashamed of it or hush hush about the truth, otherwise it just marginalizes us further.
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    Feb 14, 2011 12:03 PM GMT
    Bump This topic is relevant to my interests.
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    Feb 14, 2011 12:18 PM GMT
    Who are you peopleicon_lol.gif
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    Feb 14, 2011 12:22 PM GMT
    Hillie saidWho are you peopleicon_lol.gif


    Figments of your imagination...hell spawn created from the powers of your subconscious mind
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    Feb 14, 2011 2:39 PM GMT
    ^Nice response. Anyway my favorite Homosexual on Youtube made a topic about this:

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    Feb 14, 2011 3:22 PM GMT
    heybreaux said
    trice55 said

    #1 rule of PR is to make yourself relatable to broader society, and I truly think we fail miserably in this regard.

    I thought it was because we were in smaller numbers combined with the fact that most people are religious and can relate to people like Sarah Palin because most people are like sheep --if that is what they see, that is what they follow. "No press is bad press" is what I had heard as the #1 rule of PR, especially today. If it makes it to the news, sheep will follow.

    the overt sexualisation of what it means to be gay in my opinion seriously hinders our fight for equal rights.

    Disagree. I think putting everything out there shows the world that it isn't that big of a deal and... that it exists. People once thought that black and white heterosexual couples together in public were "overt" perhaps even "blatant" or "disgusting" to them, But it was mainly because they hadn't see it before.
    But, I think where the confusion comes in is. The more people see of things the more they become normalized, or as you put it "relatable". If you yourself were "shocked" per below, maybe it is time to come out of your own shell?


    During Pride I was shocked to see floats with naked dudes on them and other floats representing gay porn studios where the guys were throwing out condoms and lube into the crowd.

    How on earth is it legal one day out of the year to strut around NYC or London naked behind the veil of gay Pride?

    It is legal also in Rio for Carnival, New Orleans for Mardi Gras (not really legal, but they do it anyway) and several thousand beaches worldwide! Do you have an issue with nudity? If so, please keep in mind that you were born naked, you trashy, sluttly, dirty, filthy, whore. icon_biggrin.gif

    Also there is a parade in Japan that celebrates cocks, but no one is running around there all puritanically poised telling everyone to show some decorum. They are celebrating fertility. http://gakuranman.com/japanese-penis-festival/


    I was also reading an article about how on the LGBT day at Disney Land they make a whole area of the park adults only where gay porn studios and sex toy producers could set up stands. What on earth does this have to do with being gay and why is no one standing up against this? This is an amusement park for kids for gods sake.

    Certainly not all there is at Gay Disney, but sex is a part of being gay, and a part of gay Disney. Did you read this article in the Christian Science Monitor or the Watchtower?

    I have voiced my opinion on this issue before and have been branded self loathing and homophobic, but I just don't understand how wanting our community to behave with a little decorum in public is homophobic?

    ...who is not acting with decorum? The churches on Fifth Avenue were handing people (in thongs and not) thousands of cups of water on trays during the parade...what am I missing?

    Maybe I am missing something? I would love to hear other opinions regarding this issue.

    I think you are perhaps missing a lot, and I also do think that there is some self-loathing going on, my examples are but a few of a world that you might be missing ...maybe because you are viewing it through a conservative lens, or grew up in a family that taught you shame? I don't know, but all kinds of great things exist in the world depending upon if you go out to see them. Maybe it is just the way you define decorum?

    You are ashamed of these actions, because you think that they are something to be ashamed of, and they're not; such behavior turns into self-hatred because you cannot accept who you are. Now, of course, if you are attracted to a world of order and want to wait around for people to accept things, I am afraid that is not going to happen. One of MLKs famed works is "Letter from a Birmingham Jail" which in its opening statement talks about how tired he was on waiting for rights, so you may want to not only read it if you haven't, but also you may want to calibrate what you think MLK did, stood for, and or taught people about standing up for themselves in the face of those who say, "behave and you will get things in good time"

    http://www.stanford.edu/group/King/frequentdocs/birmingham.pdf





    This is depressing. No offense, but I truly think you are living with blinders on and unfortunately you represent a huge proportion of the gay community. I trule cannot believe you just compared a mixed race couple walking down the street to a guy in leather and bondage gear showing his dick and ass off in public. That is offensive on so many levels. Not to mention that this has NOTHING to do with being gay. How would you react if your 5 year old sister went to Pride with you and she was exposed to a porn float and naked guys? Is that how you want her to view you? No child should have to be exposed to an event that takes over a city centre that hides behind the vail of gay rights when in reality it has little or nothing to do with it.

    You are equating idiotic exhibitionists to the fight for gay rights. There has to be a distinction drawn...naked dudes, lube, and porn studios have nothing to do with gay rights. Putting these things in the same parade destroys this distinction.

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    Feb 14, 2011 3:25 PM GMT
    russnipp saidYou can't celebrate romantic love and you can't commercialize it the way you can sexual lust - that's why the floats at Pride are the way they are. Love just isn't something you can theme a parade around.

    Also gay porn and sex toys at Disney? DIsney? I think you're making this shit up or you read it in The Onion.

    In the end though, a major part of how we differ from society is our sex and I don't think we should be ashamed of it or hush hush about the truth, otherwise it just marginalizes us further.


    It was an article in Time magazine man, I wish I was making this crap up.

    http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1995839-2,00.html

    I
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    Feb 14, 2011 3:28 PM GMT
    Trice55, you deserve some credit for posting this in February. This hackneyed old complaint usually gets bandied about in the warmer months closer to the actual pride celebrations. icon_wink.gif

    You and Dodgedbullet are examples of what is now commonly understood to be The Gay Generation Gap. (See the excellent New Yorker article on this: http://bit.ly/zB6nR ) Both of you are in your mid-twenties and weren't around when many of the activities you strongly oppose had their genesis. Pride celebrations and activism are tied to a historical context and you are correct that society has changed. Many of these events are now more ritual than genuine activism. But they weren't always so.

    The lack of overt prejudice against gays in this country that you as young men now are afforded is directly tied to three decades of gay activism. First, in the 1970s for sexual liberation (the right to fuck and not be arrested, the right to congregate in communal places like bars and clubs, the right to reject the demand for heterosexual paring) and then actual codified human rights in the early 1990s in the form of non-discrimination laws and more recently the right to marry.

    You may want to pick up a copy of Professor Kenji Yoshino's fascinating book Covering: The Hidden Assault on Our Civil Rights. He articulates very well my feelings on the matter.

    Yoshino is a professor of law and the former deputy Dean for Intellectual Life at Yale Law School.Professor Yoshino writes:

    Unlike most racial minorities, women, and individuals with disabilities, most gays have (in fact or in the imagination of others) a panoply of options for assimilation. These forms of assimilation include conversion, passing, and covering. The history of gay rights can be retold as a history of resistance to these three kinds for assimilation.

    Through the middle of the twentieth century, gays were routinely asked to convert to heterosexuality, whether through lobotomies, electroshock therapy, or psychoanalysis. As the gay rights movement gained strength, the demand to convert gradually ceded to the demand to pass. This shift can be seen in the military’s adoption in 1993 of the “Don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, under which gays are permitted to serve so long as they agree to pass. Finally, at millennium’s turn, the demand to pass is giving way to the demand to cover -- gays are increasingly permitted to be gay and out so long as they do not “flaunt” their identities. The contemporary resistance to gay marriage can be understood as a covering demand: Fine, be gay, but don’t shove it in our faces.

    Gays routinely cover along all four axes: appearance (“acting straight”); affiliation (not making references to gay culture); activism (avoiding the charge of being militant or strident about gay rights); and association (eschewing public displays of same-sex affection).

    Notable instances in which gays who resisted the demand to cover lost their cases include Shahar v. Bowers (1997), in which a lesbian attorney was fired for engaging in a private same-sex commitment ceremony, and Lundin v. Lundin (1990), in which a gay couple was denied custody of a child because they engaged in displays of affection.

    The book is very readable and nicely articulates the feelings of many gays who were born during Stonewall, came of age during AIDS and are voicing a demand for universal rights without regard to normative heterosexual expectations. That is not a demographic that you are part of, is it Trice55? Let me assure you that there may be more value to these gay rituals that you seem to have no need for.

    From an interview with Prof. Yoshino:

    What’s wrong with trying to fit into the mainstream?

    Oftentimes, nothing. Some forms of assimilation are and always will be necessary. But assimilation has a dark side as well, because it can exact immense psychic costs from people. As a specialist in antidiscrimination law, I was struck by the costs of covering when I looked at the most recent generation of civil rights cases. People who refused to cover, and who instead honestly or proudly expressed their identities, were severely punished. Latino workers were fired for lapsing into Spanish in English-only workplaces, women who didn’t mute the fact that they were mothers suffered demotions, Sikhs who refused to remove their turbans after 9/11 were the victims of hate crimes, and gay people who engaged in displays of same-sex affection with their partners lost custody of their children.

    At one point early in the book you say that we are at a “transitional moment in how Americans discriminate.” Can you elaborate?

    The transition is between two generations. In the old generation, discrimination targeted groups as a whole -- excluding all racial minorities, women, gays, religious minorities, and individuals with disabilities. The triumph of modern civil rights is that such group-based exclusions are now relatively rare. But now a new generation of discrimination has risen to take its place, targeting not the group as a whole, but the part of the group that refuses to fit into mainstream norms. This new generation of discrimination punishes people who fail to cover.

    What do you hope to achieve with this book?

    My hope is that we can put that word “covering” in the public lexicon so we can have a national conversation about it. As Gloria Steinem once said, oftentimes we need to find a word -- like “sexual harassment” -- for a social problem before we can see it and solve it. I want to make “covering” as much of our common vocabulary as “passing” or “the closet.” I want people to think about how and why they cover. And if they find the demand to cover to be oppressive, I want to encourage them to resist it, not just in the courts, but, perhaps more importantly, in their everyday lives.

    0375508201_MZZZZZZZ.jpg

    Meditate a bit more on history. Talk to some people who participated in the early parades or marches. You might find that they have more importance as rituals than you think. icon_biggrin.gif
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    Feb 14, 2011 3:42 PM GMT
    Osakarob, I understand there is a vague historical context but give me a break. Most of the guys walking around naked are young twink types who were born 20 years after the initial demonstrations.

    And how do you justify throwing out lube and floats representing porn studios? The reality is there is no justification.

    Whether we like it or not, no other minority group in US history is trying to fight for equal rights by shocking, offending, and making us seem as different from broader society as possible.

    I am still dumbfounded that we as a community do not get this. When I was a closeted 16 year old I was starting to feel comfortable with myself as a gay teen, and then I saw a gay Pride parade and could not relate to any of it. I was plunged back into the closet for 4 more years. And if you think I was the only teenager ashamed of my sexuality because other gay men choose to walk around naked covered in feather and leather then I truly think you are deluded.
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    Feb 14, 2011 3:58 PM GMT
    I'm gay, but I feel uneasy about the stuff that goes down at gay bars/parades/pride. Gay culture just doesn't represent me or the person I am. It's fine with me if people want to engage in gay culture and even parade that about, but when it comes to fighting for rights and representing the whole spectrum of gay persons in the U.S. I agree that it would be nice to have a more accurate portrayal of what gay people are like in day to day life.

    I do not think that we should shut up or silence gay culture, or that the people who are more involved with gay culture should not have the right to self expression. It just seems to me that we should not conflate the struggle for gay rights with the struggle for self expression.
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    Feb 14, 2011 4:11 PM GMT
    trice55 said
    Whether we like it or not, no other minority group in US history is trying to fight for equal rights by shocking, offending, and making us seem as different from broader society as possible.

    I am still dumbfounded that we as a community do not get this. When I was a closeted 16 year old I was starting to feel comfortable with myself as a gay teen, and then I saw a gay Pride parade and could not relate to any of it. I was plunged back into the closet for 4 more years. And if you think I was the only teenager ashamed of my sexuality because other gay men choose to walk around naked covered in feather and leather then I truly think you are deluded.




    You make some excellent points, and I agree whole-heartedly that a very real problem the gay community has in the struggle for Equal Rights is a very basic P.R. problem. I think at the very core of this is the reality that within the gay community lies a broad spectrum of gays who have different interpretations of what it means to be both "Gay" and "Proud". The ones shouting the loudest are often-times not the ones that many others within the community want speaking for them. In fact, many within the community don't necessarily feel that they need ANYONE speaking for them --- certainly not someone that even many gays have a problem relating to. Thus, herein lies a serious problem that the gay community must likely first overcome -- that being bringing acceptance within the gay community of different types of "gays" --- before we can actually achieve greater acceptance within the broader general public.
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    Feb 14, 2011 4:26 PM GMT
    CuriousJock makes a good point. The shenanigans at the Pride parades don't "speak" to who I am, nor would I want someone who feels the need to pander to broader society, like the OP, speaking for me, either.
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    Feb 14, 2011 4:29 PM GMT
    unfounded7 saidCuriousJock makes a good point. The shenanigans at the Pride parades don't "speak" to who I am, nor would I want someone who feels the need to pander to broader society, like the OP, speaking for me, either.


    I am not pandering to broader society. I am talking about common decency that broader society seems to uphold better than the gay community.

    If it is so much for me to ask other gay man to not walk around naked at Pride (where kids are present) or for big floats to have porn stars on them then I truly think we have a problem.
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    Feb 14, 2011 4:52 PM GMT
    trice55 saidThis concern has been echoed by myself and several other members on RJ and I just wanted to get everyone else’s opinion on the matter.

    I honestly don't believe there are any other minority groups in US history that have handled their PR situation worse than the gay community. The #1 rule of PR is to make yourself relatable to broader society, and I truly think we fail miserably in this regard.

    I hate to use anecdotal evidence to discuss this, but I think in this case it is warranted. Firstly, and I know this topic has been beaten to death, but the overt sexualisation of what it means to be gay in my opinion seriously hinders our fight for equal rights. During Pride I was shocked to see floats with naked dudes on them and other floats representing gay porn studios where the guys were throwing out condoms and lube into the crowd. How on earth is it legal one day out of the year to strut around NYC or London naked behind the veil of gay Pride? I'm sure MLK is turning over in his grave watching this piss poor attempt for respect and equal rights.

    I was also reading an article about how on the LGBT day at Disney Land they make a whole area of the park adults only where gay porn studios and sex toy producers could set up stands. What on earth does this have to do with being gay and why is no one standing up against this? This is an amusement park for kids for gods sake.

    I have voiced my opinion on this issue before and have been branded self loathing and homophobic, but I just don't understand how wanting our community to behave with a little decorum in public is homophobic?

    Maybe I am missing something? I would love to hear other opinions regarding this issue.



    You are absolutely correct. Gay people don't really demand to be taken seriously. walking around in assless chaps is not going to make anyone sympathetic to your cause. It also projects the image that he gay world is all about sex and hedonism, which reinforces the falsely held belief that it is a choice. I for one can't stand pride parades.
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    Feb 14, 2011 4:55 PM GMT
    The problem in some aspects transcends gays. It is a very overt problem that 'my opinion is law and if you disagree, you are not only wrong, you are an asshole and everything else that is threatening to me'.

    There has always been militant groups in history that may or may not represent the minority, the majority, or those caught in between..

    I'm sure some stood behind Guy Faux, but that did not help his being drawn and quartered....Susan B. Anthony, Rosa Parkes, Harvey Milk, The Black Panthers, SDS, MLK,,,,,and the list goes on ad nauseum.

    NO ONE group ever represents everyone and there are always those of us who disagree with a strategy being used.

    Point in fact: I never liked what Harvey Milk stood for when i was playiing the straight world's game. My perspective of him and his ideals have drastically 180'd since overcoming my struggles.......

    Our perspectives change over time and so do our views of how we look at things......it depends on where we are in the assembly line...

    I have tried in my latter years to allow each person the right to exercise their own perspective and to somehow dovetail that with my own personal outlook.

    As far as what goes on in gay parades today......i guess if you don't care for that, then perhaps you can strive to show the world the other side of the gay coin....that we are indeed just as diversified as our straight cousins..and in the end hopefully some day we will look on one another as just that.....children of a common mother.................Keithicon_wink.gif
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    Feb 14, 2011 4:59 PM GMT
    Last time I checked, Pride parades happen one day a year. Gay guys aren't walking the streets naked every weekend. And while I'm not going to participate, I don't have a problem with that kind of expression. I'm not ashamed of the naked body, and I'm going to to go running back in the closet because of something I've seen at a Pride parade.

    If you think Pride parades need to implement some kind of conservative dress code, then you're pandering to broader society, in my mind.
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    Feb 14, 2011 5:04 PM GMT
    STOP COMPARING GAY PARADES TO MLK!!!!! that is so wildly offensive. Walking around naked in the middle of the street is recreation, not a method of demanding civil liberties.
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    Feb 14, 2011 5:05 PM GMT
    unfounded7 saidLast time I checked, Pride parades happen one day a year. Gay guys aren't walking the streets naked every weekend. And while I'm not going to participate, I don't have a problem with that kind of expression. I'm not ashamed of the naked body, and I'm going to to go running back in the closet because of something I've seen at a Pride parade.

    If you think Pride parades need to implement some kind of conservative dress code, then you're pandering to broader society, in my mind.



    do you walk around naked at work?
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    Feb 14, 2011 5:10 PM GMT
    [quote][cite]russnipp said[/cite]You can't celebrate romantic love and you can't commercialize it the way you can sexual lust - that's why the floats at Pride are the way they are. Love just isn't something you can theme a parade around.

    I will let you know as soon as I get back from buying 27 adorable heart shaped valentine's cards, a 50 lb box of candy and a 795.00 bouquet of roses. Happy non-commercial Valentines Day!!!!!!
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    Feb 14, 2011 5:11 PM GMT
    dekiruman said
    unfounded7 saidLast time I checked, Pride parades happen one day a year. Gay guys aren't walking the streets naked every weekend. And while I'm not going to participate, I don't have a problem with that kind of expression. I'm not ashamed of the naked body, and I'm going to to go running back in the closet because of something I've seen at a Pride parade.

    If you think Pride parades need to implement some kind of conservative dress code, then you're pandering to broader society, in my mind.



    do you walk around naked at work?


    I would if it weren't hazardous to my personal safety (I work in a research lab). icon_wink.gif
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    Feb 14, 2011 5:12 PM GMT
    unfounded7 saidLast time I checked, Pride parades happen one day a year. Gay guys aren't walking the streets naked every weekend. And while I'm not going to participate, I don't have a problem with that kind of expression. I'm not ashamed of the naked body, and I'm going to to go running back in the closet because of something I've seen at a Pride parade.

    If you think Pride parades need to implement some kind of conservative dress code, then you're pandering to broader society, in my mind.


    What? Walking down the street naked has nothing to do with being gay. I am not ashamed of a naked body either, but I do take offense when you have idiotic exibitionists walking down the street in sex gear in front of kids at a public parade espousing gay rights.

    You think I have a problem with nudity etc. I don't at all. I have been to nude beaches (and surprise, have gotten naked!) and am not offended by anyone naked there because it is expected and in context.

    Gay rights...the right to marry, hold your partners hand in public, kiss him in public without getting harassed, adopt children, etc etc has NOTHING to do with porn stars and 22 year old guys in underwear and fairy wings dancing to house music getting pumped out of a float full of party boys.