Good evening, peeps - I don't know about you, but Gay Pride is always like running a marathon - lots of events get thrown into the blender and there's never enough money or time to go to all of them. If you're on the verge of becoming a curmudgeon like I am (yay, I made it to old age!), you do a lot of things like just wanting to sit on the couch and watch TV and wait for the week to pass so that you can get back to work. I mean, if you're trying to do anything for basically the month of June that involves any gay people at all, you're more or less screwed until about July 1 and then you run the risk of getting lost in the vacuum of the holiday weekend. Grumble. You see? I am curmudgeony!
But this year is different. It has to be. Circumstances are different. Our lives are different.
You see, just when we thought our lives were normalizing (getting Marriage Equality, lots of trans visibility), Orlando happened. It was really our 9/11. Not to take anything away from 9/11 of course.. but that was a wake up call to Americans that no, not everyone in the world loved us. And so, with us, it was a wake up call, that no, not everyone thinks that 'the gays' are AOK.
We had inklings. Being out has never been easy and certainly hate crimes (esp against transgendered people) have been on the rise in the last year, so it's not a super duper surprise or anything, but I think that we all had it in our heads that some idiot Presidential candidates notwithstanding, we had made it through the worst.
Nope. Nope. Nope. June 12th proved us wrong.
So here we are, here in New York it's Gay Pride this Sunday and we need to be visible - and I mean REALLY visible.
So, you can stay at home and watch TV and probably be safe. Or you can put on your rainbow clothes and funny gay t shirts and get out of your literal comfort zone and get involved. That can look like joining the Guns for Gays group or marching with your favorite club, bar, or group, or simply standing on the sidelines watching and being a part of history - in that this is the year that we got FUCKING ANGRY again. I, personally, would be thrilled if the Gay Pride Parade had continued to devolve into endless corporate floats. That would have been really nice. That would mean that we were finally FINALLY to a point where we were AOK.
But we are not at a point where we are AOK. We are pretty far from AOK, I'd say.
So now it's time to shake off the shit that you've let grow over the course of the last twenty years - you know - the shit where you decided that because of protease inhibitors or PReP you didn't need to give a shit about the AIDS anymore and spent Pride day smoking crystal meth with your Manhunt/Grindr/Scruff buddies. That was ok, I'm not judging, but now it's time to put that away because we are at fucking war. Again. (Maybe "still")
We need you at the March. We need you to give a damn. We need YOU and all of your friends.
In 2000 there was a March on Washington. A friend of mine from LA who worked at a university and was a pretty smart cookie called me up and we talked about going to DC. He was all excited about the DJs and the circuit parties. I was too and said, 'oh and what group are you marching with?" He was dumbfounded. He didn't know that there was an actual protest connected to the circuit party. And you know what? He didn't CARE.
So, we need you to care now. We need for you to get involved. As I said in a previous blog post - we can't and won't carry you anymore. We have to get all of us united to get the guns off of our streets and we need to shut down the NRA. They messed with the wrong queens and that will be their fatal mistake.
Yeah, I know. You're a pussy and you don't think that you have to do shit. You're wrong. Well, you're right in that if you think that way, then well, sorry to say, but yeah, then you are a pussy... but you're wrong that you don't have to do anything. Get up, get out, and do something. Anything. NOW. The Pride Parade in New York is on Sunday. I recommend you start there.
And if you can't think of a way to get involved, jesus christ on a cracker, write to me and I'll give you suggestions. Because it's literally a matter of life and death.