Hope for Pride

“Pride is just a party,” one of my friends said. I felt shocked, ashamed, and disappointed to hear such words escape from someone’s lips. The very statement made me question what was left of Pride, what others felt Pride symbolized, and what it truly meant for me to be a part of the community.

To a point, I can understand my friend’s perspective. Yes, pride is a party — it is a celebration of people — a celebration of diversity, love, and acceptance. After a few too many cups of coffee that lead to a sleepless night of pondering, I came to the conclusion that, for me, pride is hope.

In the Advocate’s June 17 issue, I remember seeing articles of young LGBT dreamers sharing their goals and aspirations. This ever so inspirational feature forced me to stop and subconsciously smile. Yes, obstacles would be in their paths, but sexual orientation no longer was an unmovable wall. Someone once told me that road blocks are simply that — momentary obstacles in time.

In May, Kim’s blog 17, Gay, Coming Out, Homecoming King? struck me as a generational shift in our culture. In the past, we lived in a world of fear. Today, the LGBT community is more visible, evident through traditional media, social media, and numerous niche media. Today, we are working to foster an accepting and supportive environment with youth programs and communities. And today, a young man can be out, open, and run for homecoming king.

Yes, Emmylou, “We’ve come a long way, baby.” And we have many more miles to travel, but we’ll need help along the way. Young Lawrence King is a testament that we need to protect our youth. Key organizations that provide safe spaces, support, and mentors are crucial to the 2.5 million LGBT youth. Thanks to the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN), gay straight alliances across the nation, community LGBT youth centers, corporate supporters and sponsors, support organizations, such as The Trevor Project (highlighted in Eddy’s last blog), and passionate, giving individuals, we are able to foster a more open, respectful, and safer community where all can be ourselves.

For me, Pride is the time to remember all we have accomplished as a community, to see all the work we have ahead, and to celebrate every ounce of you, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identification, age, ethnicity, or socioeconomic background.

Communicating2small_3 “Pride is just a party,” one of my friends said. I felt shocked, ashamed, and disappointed to hear such words escape from someone’s lips. The very statement made me question what was left of Pride, what others felt Pride symbolized, and what it truly meant for me to be a part of the community.

To a point, I can understand my friend’s perspective. Yes, pride is a party — it is a celebration of people — a celebration of diversity, love, and acceptance. After a few too many cups of coffee that lead to a sleepless night of pondering, I came to the conclusion that, for me, pride is hope.

In the Advocate’s June 17 issue, I remember seeing articles of young LGBT dreamers sharing their goals and aspirations. This ever so inspirational feature forced me to stop and subconsciously smile. Yes, obstacles would be in their paths, but sexual orientation no longer was an unmovable wall. Someone once told me that road blocks are simply that — momentary obstacles in time.

In May, Kim’s blog 17, Gay, Coming Out, Homecoming King? struck me as a generational shift in our culture. In the past, we lived in a world of fear. Today, the LGBT community is more visible, evident through traditional media, social media, and numerous niche media. Today, we are working to foster an accepting and supportive environment with youth programs and communities. And today, a young man can be out, open, and run for homecoming king.

Yes, Emmylou, “We’ve come a long way, baby.” And we have many more miles to travel, but we’ll need help along the way. Young Lawrence King is a testament that we need to protect our youth. Key organizations that provide safe spaces, support, and mentors are crucial to the 2.5 million LGBT youth. Thanks to the Gay Lesbian Straight Education Network (GLSEN), gay straight alliances across the nation, community LGBT youth centers, corporate supporters and sponsors, support organizations, such as The Trevor Project (highlighted in Eddy’s last blog), and passionate, giving individuals, we are able to foster a more open, respectful, and safer community where all can be ourselves.

For me, Pride is the time to remember all we have accomplished as a community, to see all the work we have ahead, and to celebrate every ounce of you, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identification, age, ethnicity, or socioeconomic background.

Originally Posted: Jun 23, 2008

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Posted on June 23, 2008, in LGBT Communications. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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