Sunday, May 2, 2010

A Very Special Gay Pride

In little over a month, New Yorkers such as myself and many others will celebrate Gay Pride Month. Not only will New York gays be celebrating, but so will states all over America. It will be, as always a huge celebration of the LGBT community. Why?Since June 28th, 1970 we have celebrated Gay Pride. Since then, what started out as a small gathering has turned into a fanfare of gigantic proportions. We’ve gone out and shouted to the world that we are normal, that we exist and will not go into hiding, that we have a right to love whatever adult we wish.

It will be fascinating this year to see what news and changes The Gay Pride Events will bring. This has been a year of much hard work for many gay and lesbians,bisexuals, and transgengers. Groups like GetEqual and Queerising, Human Rights Campaign, The Task Force, and others have all had a part in playing out history. President Barack Obama too, has been in the public’s eye as well. There seems to be a huge discontent in the gay community regarding “ Don’t Ask Don’t Tell”, Enda (the Employment Nondiscrimination Act) and Immigration LGBT issues. Somehow I don’t think that these disagreements or differing points of view will interrupt the joyful event.

In June 2009 , President Barrack Obama and the first lady held the first ever gay pride event in The White House. Never had a President held such an event. While I cannot agree with The President on everything,  I will say that some of my colleagues are forgetting about the strides being made.

Gay Pride (the event, not the feeling that goes with it) is like Easter, Halloween, Thanksgiving and probably some other holidays all rolled into one. It is a time for not only LGBT to come together in solidarity, but also for their friends and family. This is important at a time when young people all over are still being kicked out onto the streets for being gay. When so many are still in the closet for fear of retribution, or fear for their lives. It is a time to hope for change...and renew our belief in it. Sure, it’s a bit of partying, quite a bit, but so are most celebrations.

Amazingly for me, this June will be the best pride ever. Even if I no longer have that (almost) 6 pack of a few years ago. This year, I will buy some mementos, I will have a toast or two for those who fought for Gay Rights. I will even buy my flags, jewelry, and all the trimmings. This year however will be extra special because it will be the 14th anniversary of the joining of my Life partner and myself. On June 23rd 1996, the day that we met, would have been my mom and dads 40th anniversary. It will also be the anniversary on which he and I will be going to Connecticut to get married. This is the first anniversary in which New York will recognize our marriage. The few months since Gov. David Paterson stated that New York would recognize gay marriages performed out of state, have been a long wait indeed. At long last the wait is almost over. Here’s to a wonderful Gay Pride Month to all! Here’s to equality!

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