Monday, June 12, 2006

How Do You Celebrate Pride?

So the time has come about again when certain people around the country celebrate being gay, lesbian, transgender or bisexual. This month, which is a celebration of the Stonewall riots of 1969, is supposedly a launching point for all to remember the efforts of our earlier brothers and sisters. It is a time to celebrate all that is gay and be thankful of we are who we are. But do we really do that? By taking one weekend or day out of the year, do we accomplish this goal or do we merely use Pride as an excuse to get drunk and laid. While the multitude of people that come to Pride might come with their families, many more come with less "Pridefull" ambitions. It might also be noted that if one were to look at the amount of those that attended the Pride parade greatly differs than those that voted against an anti-gay marriage amendment last year (it should also be noted that many of those that voted against the amendment were our straight brothers and sisters). Oklahoma also lacks a law protecting GLTB people in our jobs, education, discrimination, and health benefits. Is this Pride? Most gay people I know will not defy convention and lovevingly acknowledge their partner in public as so many straight people force us to view everyday. Are these instances of "Pride"? On the other hand, we have many people without higher education or the skills needed to obtain a job that might offer a encouraging work environment or protection. Many GLTB people I know are in the service industry and due to the high turnover rate, most people will forget your presence within a couple of weeks when you have left due to unfavorable circumstances (thus making no impact). I also understand how hard it might be to vote sometimes when you have two minimum wage jobs or a family to support. The point being we each are capable of performing various deeds and events that are viable to our lives, some more than others. Sometimes this is due more to the person than what they believe holds them back. What we each have to do is what makes us happy and able to live with ourselves. But we must also remember that our existence, our livelihood as a group also rests on how much ourselves and others are willing to do and go out of our way to do for each other. Remember those that are not able or can not do as much as you might be able and take that extra step next time in helping others or being "Proud" of who you are. The worst thing you can do is nothing, when we do nothing, make no protest, or make our anger or disapproval unknown we let the bigots win and that is no fun.

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