I love gay pride!

  • SoDakGuy

    Posts: 1862

    Jun 27, 2007 7:21 PM GMT
    I'm fed up w/ the posting about how Pride may damage gay people and what not.

    That's utter bullshit.

    Why do I love gay pride? If you are comfortable in who you are, then Pride is an amazing time. There's this familial aura around this time and honestly, it makes me proud to be a faggot.

    Stop hating yourself; be comfy in your own skin and enjoy Pride. It may get that nasty stick out of your asses. :)

    Don't forget what happened at the Stonewall Inn that started it all. It was the drag queens and the nelly types and the dykes that started fighting back against the police.

    So, why do you love gay pride?
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    Jun 27, 2007 8:46 PM GMT
    I love the pre-pride picnic in Stanley Park. :) I like the familial aspect to it too... in Montreal you see a LOT of families... gay ones and straight ones. Loads of lesbians from out in the boonies holding hands and looking pleased, and TONS and TONS of kids. I just love watching drag queens interact with kids.
  • jc_online

    Posts: 487

    Jun 27, 2007 8:56 PM GMT
    I miss gay pride. I now live near Virginia Beach and there is no parade; no June festival; no outdoor dance party. (There is a great party-in-park in September, but it's just not the same as having one in June.) With Pat Robertson's and Jerry Falwell's Universities in this area, I think many of the fabulous queers have moved away.

    But, on the topic of Stonewall...although the Stonewall Riot is usually credited for initiating the modern gay rights movement in the USA, the Matachine Society started demonstrating a few years before in front of Independence Hall in Philadelphia on July 4th every year. After the Stonewall riot in '69, the crowd at the Independence Day rally in Philly grew exponentially. The following year, the organizers of that were involved (not sure to what extent) in commemorating the Riot in NYC.

    There's lots of history to learn about why we have the limited rights that we do. WE need to share the stories that we know and remind younger men, women, and trans people of our history.

    For more info, google or wicki any of these important people:
    Frank Kameny
    Barbara Gittings
    Harry Hay

    That's why I like Pride: it's a chance to celebrate the life of our sisters and brothers that began paving the way out of the shaddows and into the sunshine.

    Peace, Love, and Pride-
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    Jun 27, 2007 9:10 PM GMT
    Seattle had their Pride parade this past weekend. It was an absoulte blast!

    On Saturday night, I went on a Pride cruise through Elliott Bay. The people were great, the food and libations were over flowing and the sunset was absolutely magical. As the sun was setting, a bunch of us raised our glasses and toasted all of the friends, partners, etc. that have passed. It was a very touching moment.

    After the cruise, we hit the bars. It was great to see that they were all very busy. I think it's great when the bars, restaurants, shops, etc. that support the gay community can do well during this special weekend. It's one way the community can say thank you for thier support.

    Sunday, I went to the parade. Once again, it was great to see our diverse community coming together and having such a grand time. The local bear community won the prize for best float. It was a huge tub full of bears and bubbles. The sign on the float read "Bears Bath and Beyond". The local gay baseball, softball, rugby and soccer teams were also represented.

    Happy Pride everyone!
  • Laurence

    Posts: 942

    Jun 27, 2007 9:32 PM GMT
    It's London's Gay Pride this coming weekend. But me and redheadguy are off to Madrid to celebrate their Gay Pride on the same day.

    (We'll be the ones in big wigs and little shorts waving flags and winking at the boys, so come and say hi if you're there).

    Happy Pride.

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    Jun 27, 2007 9:33 PM GMT
    Hey SoDakGuy:

    Kudos to you for starting this thread! I think it's a stroke of genius. After reading and contributing to the other one, I realize its negative tone has caused everyone, defenders and detractors of Pride, to think or Pride and each other negatively.

    Reading what everyonr LIKES about Pride is really refreshing.

    Good job buddy, and thanks!
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    Jun 27, 2007 9:34 PM GMT
    "(We'll be the ones in big wigs and little shorts waving flags and winking at the boys, so come and say hi if you're there)."

    Dude, that's like a bit ilke saying "We're signing up for the Army. We'll be the ones in green. Come and say hi if you're there."

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    Jun 27, 2007 9:41 PM GMT
    Thank you, SoDakGuy. I agree with Scully...the other thread started with a negative premise.

    I love the feeling of freedom and sense of family.

    I love the communal sense of purpose, as someone else below put it, out front in the sunshine.

    I love seeing people being happy to be free of judgment.

    I love the sense of time and place that Pride gives us...that we are here now, and we can celebrate our existence, even in the face of hate and prejudice.

    I also love the straight people who come out and have fun, and can see the tongue-in-cheek aspects of the event without judgment.

    I also love to see the hot guys...you trip over them...
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    Jun 27, 2007 9:43 PM GMT
    Gay Pride = It's like Spring Fling only more expensive. I LOVE it. What a great reason to be in a parade.
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    Jun 27, 2007 9:46 PM GMT
    I really like that for about a month, much of the mainstream world gets a lot of opportunity to witness some stuff that's not right in their face if perceptible at all. For example, Turner Classic Movies are doing a whole "Screened Out" series highlighting movies loaded with what had to be tamed to inuendo and supposition. To see some of that tempered with the perspective of the host is eye opening.

    I really wanted to catch Cindy Lauper's True Colors show in Atlantic City but life gets in the way. This'll become a traditional addition to annual Pride events, this festival tour. I'm sure of it. A very cool thing, IMO.

    Also, I, like many people can't walk by a party.
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    Jun 27, 2007 10:50 PM GMT
    Atlanta is a city to which young gay people from small and mid-sized towns throughout the South have long come to live, with the hope of finding greater acceptance. They get to play, love and usually work without hiding their sexual orientation.

    The Pride celebration here, one of the nation's largest, is mind-boggling to most of these newcomers. To see a city basically become gay for a weekend, to see tens of thousands of gay people being completely open, with the acceptance (or mere tolerance) of the heterosexual majority is a moving experience.

    I've never had any problem whatsoever with the (greatly exaggerated) displays of overt sexuality. We've been criminals, sinners and mental patients because of our bodies' way of experiencing sexual pleasure, so it is no surprise that sexual display is part of the Pride scene -- just as it is in Mardi Gras' liberation of the repressed heterosexual body.

    But mainly what I like about Pride is watching newly out people have their first experience of spending a weekend in a world gone completely gay. It reverses everything, so it really does offer an experience that is revolutionary for many.

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    Jun 27, 2007 10:56 PM GMT
    " But me and redheadguy are off to Madrid to celebrate their Gay Pride on the same day."

    Ohhhhh. El Dia de Orgullo Gay with the MadrileƱos is much fun. There were literally 1.5 million people there last time I went. After you wear yourself out in the Plaza Chueca, meet me Saturday night, at 3 a.m., at the Strong Center.
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    Jun 27, 2007 11:06 PM GMT
    I really love Pride in smaller areas. I live in the Boise area, and I think Pride is just so important around here. It never gets much coverage in the news, but it's awesome to march through the city and see that most people in Boise are actually pretty accepting and cool.

    Probably my fondest memory of Pride is from Boise Pride two years ago, and just because it cracked me up. There was a rally on the Statehouse steps, as with every year, and there was a Christian group nearby singing hymns. So we all busted out with a little Gloria Gaynor as we marched past them. It was wonderful.
  • OptimusMatt

    Posts: 1124

    Jun 28, 2007 12:06 AM GMT
    Haha, my first pride...well, I went to see a pearl jam concert with all my straight friends, then we all crashed in some hotel in downtown toronto..the next day, we all woke up, went downstairs, they went to our car and I was like "SEE YA!"

    Hopped on the first subway car I could find, made my way to the pride parade...haha, been 100% out ever since. It was a liberating experience...and a hot one as well *grin*

    I have my reasons why I'm not ra-ra pride but I think what makes pride fun is seeing like, EVERY gay guy I've met in Ontario all somehow stumble across each other - I missed this years parade because I had to work, but some of my friends are camera whores and the like, 200 pictures that went up on facebook just made me go "Wow" - people you totally forget about because they live like, 8 hours away are like, THERE, and you're all partying your asses off.

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    Jun 28, 2007 12:59 AM GMT
    I remember my first Gay Pride in Seattle.

    It was back when it was still on Broadway, and it was amazing. I had just moved to the city, and had only recently come "out." Pride helped me to finially SEE that I was not alone, and that being gay did not equal being a freak, and that there were thousands of people like me, who liked me!

    I believe in the power of PRIDE!
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    Jun 28, 2007 1:43 AM GMT
    Hey boys,

    I had a rought day, so I thought I'd say that seeing everyone's GOOD memories of Pride really cheered me up. I don't know about the rest of you but I found the other thread deeply depressing... just made me feel angry reading the posts... even the post that defended pride just put me in a bad mood.

    So... here's to you guys and the power of positive thinking. And to SoDakGuy for making the paradign shift and starting things off!

    Any of you North Westerrn guys coming to Vancouver?
  • atxclimber

    Posts: 480

    Jun 28, 2007 2:33 AM GMT
    You know, honestly, the first time I went to Pride was in San Francisco, and I was AFRAID. Seriously, I'd been out for years and even dated a guy or two, but just wasn't comfortable with it still. Wouldn't be comfortable with PDA. Wasn't really comfortable in my own skin.

    Pride in SF scared the shit out of me. Dancing in the huge crowds, and being ogled because I'm tall and kind of hard to miss, made me so self-conscious. But my friends were there with me and so was beer, and so eventually I danced, and took my shirt off, lost an expensive jacket (oops!) and had a great time. And a bad hangover the next day.

    The next year, I went and just hung out at a friends' offices right off Market street where we could watch the parade from the balcony. I sat with a good group of people up in that office, had some mimosas and cheese, and had a really great afternoon. It still took some liquor to get me dancing, but I did, and I loved it.

    I particularly appreciate Pride because every time I go it's like a milestone. I can note my own level of comfort. I'm really an introverted guy who has taught himself to be gregarious (and honestly most of that's just an act to avoid the discomfort of being an introvert in social situations!) and so while it was easy for me to tell my parents "I'm gay" (I actually told my mom, "I think I'm bi," and she said, "I always thought you were gay,") being comfortable in my own skin is ongoing work. It's a LOT better than it used to be, and I attribute a lot of that to Pride.

    I remember seeing the guys in glitter and speedos on floats and thinking the kinds of negative thoughts a lot of people say. "That's so shameless," or whatever. Then I stopped and thought, am I really just thinking that because I'm secretly jealous they're confident enough to be up there?

    Even if I'm not going to make a career out of dancing on Pride floats, I think it's good practice to try all the extremes. If someone asked me to put on a chrome speedo and glitter and dance on a Pride float... well, it'd still take some liquor (I swear, I'm not an alcoholic. I just use it as a little liquid self-confidence sometimes) but I think I'd do it.

    A big philosophy of mine is experiencing as much as I can, in life. When faced with a decision, I find if I haven't actually tested out both options, a lot of the time I think I'm being dispassionate but I'm not, I'm really afraid of the one I haven't tried, and I justify it. "I wouldn't even WANT to be up on that float," I might say.

    In that case, I try to think to myself, well, would it kill me to get up there once? If not, I should just do it. Then whether I decide it's for me or not, I can say it's really a measured decision. Not fear.

    Pride will always hold a special place in my heart as a wonderful symbol of fearlessness and a mile-marker of my own progress out of this shell I'm slowly sloughing off.
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    Jun 28, 2007 5:22 AM GMT
    I can honestly say that I really don't know what Pride is all about, or what happens. I've been out for a year as of June 25th, and this year will be my First Pride, as well as my 26th birthday. June 30th is St Petersburg, FL's Pride. I am riding a float of one of the local gay bars where I frequent, and know the owner.

    I am really looking forward to it! I am proud of who I am!

    Hooray for Pride!!!
  • jc_online

    Posts: 487

    Jun 28, 2007 11:28 AM GMT
    Happy Birthday Greer - have a great time at Pride, and be sure to post your experience here next week!

    My best memory of Pride was about 10 years ago in Cleveland. I was walking with the local ACTUP chapter and had convinced the guy I was dating at the time to march with us. He was rather uncomfortable at first, not because it was pride but because people might associate him with ACTUP, and he felt he was much more conservative that "those people." About 1/4 mile into the parade, he grabbed my hand and held it for the rest of the parade. I remember that exhilirating experience vividly.

    Although I had been out for years, and was very publicly out working for the AIDS Taskfore as an educator and volunteering with ACTUP and had been on the news a few times talking about gay and/or HIV stuff, I was taken emothionally to another level of feeling proud about who I am, just by Ron's taking my hand. It felt right, good, and OK.

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    Jun 28, 2007 12:41 PM GMT
    I stumbled on Chicago's Pride Parade by accident last Sunday, and I'm glad I did. I really appreciated the number of youths out there--I think it's great to have a time each year to celebrate our community, and I know when I was in my teens I didn't feel that sort of freedom at all.
  • SoDakGuy

    Posts: 1862

    Jun 28, 2007 1:42 PM GMT
    When I was first out and having lots of problems w/ my family, I really felt alone. I went to my first Pride parade and I saw the PFLAG group marching and I just started crying. I found it beautiful that these straight friends and family members are there for their loved ones regardless of their sexual orientation.

    It's gotten immensely better w/ my family since then, but seeing PFLAG always gets me choked up. :)
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    Jun 28, 2007 4:11 PM GMT

    Yeah me too! From time to time the parada makes me really emotional. I *hate* admitiing it and I've become a master of keeping it together, lest my friends think I'm a giant puss. :)
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    Jun 28, 2007 4:36 PM GMT
    A what?
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    Jun 28, 2007 5:51 PM GMT
    What I love about it isn't so much the flamboyance of people (though that is fabulous) as much as it is seeing maybe the guy who sacks my groceries or the woman at the local library being out there, representing the diversity among gays. Pride tends (at least in my experience) to bring out people who otherwise shy away from the bar scene and who you'd not see otherwise in a group of gays. Also, it's great seeing young people there, being open and embracing their own blosoming divas: they are the future and their positive energy is truly inspiring to me! (Oh, and of course I love seeing some hottie show what he's workin' with in too little shorts! Hehe!)
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    Jun 28, 2007 8:34 PM GMT
    I like gay pride because I get to perform in it.

    You know, its not pride that damages the image of gay people. Its the media. Newspapers, magazine, TV Stations like to show the most sexual and usual aspect of pride. Not the happy gay couple, gay family, the straight supporters or anything like that. They like to show the drag gueens, the half naked man, the old guy riding his bike naked (saw this on in SF), and the flaming twinky boy. Why, because its what it will grab peoples attentions and stir a reaction -- both positive and negative. They gotta get the ratings for their sponsors - fuck being unbiased. I know these things do not represent the 90% of gay people that I see and they sure as hell don't represent me.

    On the radio the other day, they were talking about pride and one guy called in saying he doesn't attend prides because they "don't represent him." The news guy came back and said, well if you don't go, how are you ever going to get represented? If you don't like something, do something to change it.

    Pride is a time for us to be proud of who we are -- a very diverse subculture of the world.