Beyond Gay: The Politics of Pride

I know I know, you don’t have to tell me, I’m very late for the conversation since this documentary came out in 2009 but I’m just now seeing it for the first time on Showtime.  We don’t get out to the movies very often and when we do we have to both agree on what we see which means we don’t get to see a lot of movies.  So… here I am in mid 2011 just now seeing this movie for the first time.

ho·mo·pho·bi·a Noun /ˌhōməˈfōbēə/

  1. An extreme and irrational aversion to homosexuality and homosexual people

I found the definition for homophobia so that people will know the exact definition and know I am not making it up.  “An extreme and irrational aversion”…  Note the word irrational.  That is in the dictionary.  It says that your aversion to homosexuality is irrational.  You know if the dictionary says you are being irrational then it’s time to cool your jets.

When I started watching this movie tonight I didn’t know they were going to really get into all of the gory details about how other countries treat their gays.  I thought it was just them documenting their organization of the gay pride parade and festival in Canada and that it would be pride for 90 minutes.  Instead, they bring us to Moscow, Serbia, Sri Lanka US and Canada.

“There are over 80 countries across the globe that still criminalize homosexuality.  7 or 8 countries that actually uphold the death penalty.”

These are the words that are shocking to me.  I know that there were countries that criminalize people for holding hands or just for looking or acting gay.  In Sri Lanka it’s a 10 year prison sentence, yes still.  Just for being gay in public.  In India and in Africa lesbian women have to worry about corrective rape.

“‘Corrective rape’ is a criminal practice, whereby men rape lesbian women, purportedly as a means of “curing” the woman of her sexual orientation.”

This one woman told a story about how they rape lesbian women for hours, it’s pure torture to be raped like this especially since most of them are still virgins at the time of the rape.  It’s not only painful to penetrate them but it’s also very demeaning and you know, mentally painful.  It’s painful for me to even think about it.

In Moscow Russia you cannot have a gay pride, the mayor denies their applications and says that he will continue to deny them this year, next year, 5 years from now and 10 years from now.  As long as he is in office he will continue to deny their gay pride festival so they have to go to secret locations and have their quick 5 minute gay pride then pack it all up before the police show up.

In the middle east, if you are gay you are going to be pushing daisies very soon because they do not, absolutely do not want you living among them.  They will kill you and it is perfectly legal to do so.  I seem to recall the president of Iran Mahmoud Ahmadinejad being asked in a press conference in the United States a few years ago about the gay iranian people and he said “We don’t have gay people” and everyone laughed at him.  He was very serious, he wasn’t expecting to hear something so bold as being laughed at as if he had just told a joke.  They do have gays, they are all in hiding, married with children and pretending to be straight to stay alive.  That is no way to live.

People are dying and people are being held in prisons for 10 years and being raped to correct them.  This is why we have gay pride.  It’s to make people aware of intolerance and to send a message that we are here, we are queer, get used to it.  Our message is to get over it and stop killing us and treating us like we are dogs because we were all born this way just like some of us were born with red, brown and blond hair; brown, blue and green eyes; black, brown, red, yellow, pink and white skin.  We were all born this way so just get over it.

My definition, if I may be so bold to give it, is that homophobic people aren’t afraid of gay people, they just don’t understand why we are all so happy and “gay” about being ourselves when they have to live the way their parents told them they have to live.  You see, I believe that all of those anti-gay people are only anti-gay because they cannot be gay themselves, they are jealous because we are living the lives they feel they should have led so they are taking out their aggression on gay people because they are too coward to be openly gay.

Other homophobic people are that way because they are so ignorant because they were told by their pastor that because it says in the bible that being gay is a sin.  Well, so is being fat and so is being lazy and so is judging other people because that isn’t for them to do, that is for “God” to do.  You don’t have to talk to gay people if you don’t like them but by acting out against them you yourself are sinning and will go to this mythical place called Hell in our stead.  So enjoy.

You know, before I watched this documentary, I have to admit that I didn’t know all of this information.  I know to some degree but not every thing they were talking about.  So I come from this a little more educated and enlightened.  I’m going to watch it again the next time I see it on Showtime so I can be sure to pay close attention so the information stays with me.

My uncle was so bold to ask me one year, my visit just so happened to be around gay pride month where it was all over the news.  He asked me plain and simple.  “Why do gay people need to have their ‘Gay pride parade’?  The mexican’s don’t have a parade to be proud to be mexican, the blacks don’t have a parade to be proud to be black, so why do gay people do it?”

See, this movie is a great way to explain to them what I cannot explain from memory.  First of all I didn’t answer him.  I knew that it would be detrimental if I responded with an ignorant point of view because all it takes is one idiot (me) telling people the wrong thing and they tell a friend and they tell a friend and so on.  So I reserved my answer for a later time when I was more educated on the subject.  Here we are about 9 years later and I may just be ready to answer that question.

I won’t bring it up unless asked again though because when it comes to this type of conversation with my family, I get interrupted a lot and am constantly told I’m wrong and I’m not going to put myself in that situation so screw em.  And that’s another issue, they ask but they really don’t want to know the real answer.  They don’t want to know the full details so they tell you to edit yourself because they are so afraid I’m going to start talking about anal sex.  It’s not all about sex people.  It’s about freedom and about not being killed by your government or put in prison for simply being alive.

Wow this is longer than I thought it would be.  Ok so to wrap this up, it’s a very good documentary which helps explain a ton about not just the gay pride itself but also give you some historical and statistical facts.  Just watch it.  Here is the trailer.

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One thought on “Beyond Gay: The Politics of Pride

  1. Jason Wheeler

    Hello there,
    We used historical and statistical facts from this movie to give LGBT travelers tips on destinations that do not welcome us. Please check out http://www.gayvacationgetaways.com when you get a chance and let us know of places that you have visited which were gay friendly (or not so gay friendly). GayVacationGetaways.com supports equal rights!

    Like

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