Whenever I see images from Pride events they always seem to focus on the extremes. Do we do ourselves a disservice or allow others to exploit us?
I struggle with the identity of Pride. Is it a celebration of sexuality? Is it a human rights march? Is it an orgy of deviants on the move?
If it is a celebration of sexuality I feel it should be conducted in with restrictions in place to protect children and others who may be easily shocked or offended. The common images I see are those which are at the outer limits of extremes! Sure these are the ones the media publishes because these are the ones of kinks and fems which empower the churches to disown and parents to have a negative impression of any sexuality other than being straight.
To be honest I am not sure I would feel supported and wanting to embrace my new sexuality if I was a teenager thinking about coming out. In my own experience when I was growing up many of the pics I saw were of Leatherman/clones and I couldn’t grow a moustache until my late 20s, whilst the feel of leather made me sweat profusely and was uncomfortable to me. As a fourteen-year-old boy, I wondered how I would ever adapt.
If it is about human rights, then perhaps Pride marches are the wrong place. Not sure about the message it sends to restrictive governments. Seems to be less about sexuality and more about exhibitionism. Is it that we think we can shock countries into changing their policies?
Have a thought for children. I often wonder how Pride gets away with it. From a safeguarding perspective, I am not sure some of the behaviour or the costumes are appropriate.
LGBT+ from my way of thinking has devalued homosexuality and the identity of gay men. I never asked to be part of every other deviancy. I feel its inclusion of other sexual perspectives under one umbrella gives weight to the “Us and them” argument It always seems the choice is, straight or LGBT+. So long after gay men could have achieved equality, that position of inclusion and acceptance has been denied us because of the eternal protester and politically minded within organisations who seek attention.
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