Sunday, June 25, 2006

Variety Makes Us Stronger: Atlanta Pride Parade 2006

This isn't my Atlanta Pride picture, but I love it. Click to picture for Far Left's story behind the shot.

It was a year-ago this weekend that my wife and I visited Atlanta for the first time, and searched Mid-Town for apartments. Our building manager apologized for the parking situation, it was Pride Weekend 2005 and parking was at a premium. We loved the neighborhood and building. Now this year, we walked to Pride, and got rained out in the process. But we did get to see Dykes on Bikes start the parade off as well as good chunk of the other people in the event. And then we walked a few short blocks home, happy to be this close to the parade route.

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There's a bit of a brouhaha over gay pride and culture between Duane and ATL Malcontent . I have a couple of of gay friends who have relocated from San Francisco to LA. Both academic professional, both have either had strained family relationships or have been completely disowned because of being gay. Like ATL Malcontent, they don't identify with pride parades, flaming queers and in-your-face activism.

To me this argument would be almost like being told I was a self-loathing straight guy because I didn't embrace the sex-and-spectacle event that was Spring Break in Daytona Beach. Having participated in one while in college, if that wasn't Straight Pride Week, then I don't know what was. When I told people that spring break was a miserable time, I got asked how I couldn't have had a great time with all the titty and beer. Because, it was retarded, full of drunk driving and watching people fuck in the parking lot of our hotel just didn't hold the same appeal for me as my roommates at the time. And yet I don't feel lesser for it.

Back to Duane, ATL Mal. and everyone else who has a stake in this conversation. My point is the sand box is big enough for everybody, be it Mary Cheney and log-cabin Conservatives, leather-loving bears to twinkle-fairy club kids, and every degree and moderation between. Variety, difference and dissension are all good things. And that holds true for every persuasion, orientation, social movement, religion and ethnic group.

And that's my 2 cents.


atlmalcontent said...

Thanks for your support. Good analogy, actually ... wish I thought of it. But to your point ... I don't have a problem with pride parades or flaming queers, I just don't want young gay people to feel as if they must fulfill a stereotype to be accepted. There should be enough room in the sandbox for us all, but as the one kicked out of it I can only complain.
Notice you didn't link me within your blog (not sure if intentional or night due to me not linking Duane). Maybe I should've, and I would normally link someone, but it's my petty way of payback to someone who stooped to personal attacks. If he had merely disagreed, and not played the self-loathing card, then I would've gladly linked his page.
Anyway, thanks again for your bit of common sense.

Kick The Donkey said...

Excellent analogy. As Atl Malcontent said, I wish I'd thought of it.

At least now, when some of the ultra conservative people I know say something like: "Well, if the 'gays' weren't so 'in your face', I wouldn't have a problem with them.", I have your analogy as a counter point.

mingaling said...

Well said, Robert!