June 27, 2014

Pride and... Prejudice? By J

Now that Pride season is fully upon us, we are free to celebrate who we are, with pride of course. I'm excited for the festivities and yes, the all night parties, but a large part of me feels like there's been something lost.

I've never been able to shake the feeling that we don't really show individuality anymore. Yes, abiding trends are a must to avoid becoming a social pariah, but must it come down to a set formula of the exact same half-shaven heads, bright shorts, and boat shoes? Even passed simple fashion, does every young gay man have to have an app on his phone to alert him of the nearest gay man with the same app on his phone?

I understand that we live and love in a sexual world and now a technological one, but even those in "exclusive relationships" have these apps, just to keep up appearances, and this is especially alarming in older generations of gay men who seem to be following their younger counterparts. If any of my descriptions previously described you, I in no way meant offense or malice, no one wants to be the outcast and these are the trends. I just wonder if we haven't lost what it is that makes us proud at Pride to begin with? Perhaps I am being too cynical, but are we merely just emulating the gay stereotype portrayed in the media these days? This is a question that I feel has no definitive answer, but I do think about.

Our individuality and our ability to express ourselves, living how we want with who we want and having it become integrated with society. We've made leaps and bounds in the last few years with gay rights. Hell, we can get married now. We can hold hands in PUBLIC without people bringing out the pitchforks. 
There will never be the same acceptance everywhere, not everyone accepts certain lifestyles and there will be naysayers but at least there's progress. So this upcoming Pride week I implore, I beg, I plead, don't be just another cliché following trends, be you, be spectacular, be stupendous, and most importantly be proud of who you are.

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