I just posted the below on Boards.ie. I’m sure it’ll get a few people all riled up.
With the Cork Pride events starting to wrap up and with Dublin Pride 2005 well and truly put to bed, I’m starting to wonder what gay people actually think of Pride. Do they know the origins of Pride, why it came about? Where is the “Pride” aspect of it now? Is getting drunk and adhering to over-the-top stereotypes in any way constructive?
I’ve supported Pride before and given out to people who dissed the march but who turned up to the after parties, but now I wonder what is the use for Pride nowadays. It seems just an excuse to get drunk, party and bitch if straight people think you’re a freak.
After witnessing a bunch of screaming queens parade up and down the main street of Cork about a dozen times in an open top bus while most of the gay people were actually hiding under a big rainbow flag, I have to wonder how that makes me proud. It was funny hearing members of the public ask (seriously) “Are they the Lota kids on a day trip?” too. All people saw or rather heard were screams from a bus with a rainbow flag that was going up and down the street. How is something like that making people aware of the gay community?
As the saying goes, Invisble people will have invisble rights, but is this the way for gay people to make themselves visible? I can see the idea that a pride event gets attention, so yes, someone in big heels and wearing a boa gets your attention, but then what? What’s the message then? It’s like that stupid thing “SEX! Now that I have your attention” but then the person just looks back to shouting “SEX” The Fathers for Justice got attention to their campaign when they scaled Buckingham Palace in a Batman suit. They got the headlines and they had something of substance after they got the attention.
Pride was meant to make the greater community aware that gay people existed. But everyone knows there are gay people everywhere now, trouble is most of the places we see gay people are in stereotype roles on TV and in the media, oh and in parading down the street in drag once a year. My mother talks to me now and again about gay people and talks about certain gay people “Did you know such and such is gay? ” what is unsaid but is implied by her without knowing it “and he’s normal”. I would think it is the same for a lot of the wider community too. “You’re gay? But I couldn’t tell cos all I know are the stereotypes that gay people adhere to and those that don’t adhere to them remain silent.”
Since Pride perpetuates myths or rather makes them reality, is Pride devisive nowadays? It’s not like the Gay Community is doing anything to fight for equality at the moment anyway and make us equals. Certainly now when the “Gay Community” invites the Minister for Injustice to their Film Festival and he is all down with the gays telling them he really gives a damn about their rights, yet is going to Court to stop a middle-aged Lesbian couple from getting what is rightfully theirs, and then “community” publicly congratulate his bullsh1t statement.
I have to wonder what are the priorities for the community. The community seems more interested in putting on gliiter, getting drunk on Smirnoff ice than talking about equality.
Also, why do people only celebrate pride one day in the year? I’m proud to be a pink triangle carrying member of the gay community every day of my life. I’m happy to let people know I’m gay without making an event of it. I don’t feel the need to bring a ghettoblaster into work playing kylie and dancing to her in hotpants, yet many of the people who get drunk to go on a Pride march hide away in their closeted shells the rest of the year.
Should pride be more about encouraging people to break away from stereotypes, about encouraging them to feel comfortable talking about their sexuality in a daily environment and about campaigning for greater equality? It can also be about partying and acting like a twat, but right now it is only about acting like a drunken twat.