I don’t get “gay pride”. Really, I don’t. And I’m speaking as a gay man. Being gay is as much a part of me as my own sense of humanity. To say that I’m proud of being gay is about the same as saying I’m proud of having a heartbeat or of breathing oxygen. It’s simply part of who I am and nothing more. How does having a bunch of scantily-clad nelly queens or uber-butch leather daddies prancing about on a parade float embody any form of pride?
The days of “I’m here! I’m queer! Get used to it!” have been over for a long time. How about we try “I’m here! Let’s get along!” Or rather, to use a common colloquialism, “you attract more bees with honey than with vinegar”. Being disagreeable for the sake of being disagreeable accomplishes nothing more than alienating potential allies. It’s entirely possible to disagree without being disagreeable. As a culture, we Americans spend way too much time and energy focusing on what makes us different, rather than on what makes us the same.
Yes, I understand the Christian oppression of anything gay. Let’s just say I’m intimately aware of it and leave it at that. Rather than being confrontational and stoking the fires of hate and intolerance, we can show people that gays are just like everyone else: we wake up, we hug our loved ones, we go to work, we come home, we hug our loved ones again, and we go about our lives, bringing harm to no one.
Yes, there will always be Christians like Fred Phelps and his clan; that, unfortunately, is unavoidable. There will always be those who value hate more than humanity. In my experience, ignoring them is the best thing to do; it deprives them of their so desperately sought martyr complex.
In short, be yourself, but don’t go out of your way to rub it in other people’s faces. As someone once said, “Can’t we all just get along?”