If I were not a gay man, I would be accused of homophobia for saying this, but pride is not defined as a summer month celebrating homosexuality. The media might have us believe that the only definition of ‘pride’ is purely associated with being gay and that after June we don’t need to think about it again until the following summer. But there is pride in being gay, just as there is pride in being straight, bisexual or asexual. Pride is a wonderful thing that, thankfully, is not bound to one gender or sexual orientation.
Pride has gotten away from us and its meaning, like so many words, has eroded. Our individual perspectives and the embracing of different cultures is what creates the diversity that we are so desperate to attain, yet we manufacture forms of what we call diversity that end up looking like segregation and consolidation of thought. This partitioning and suppression in the name of acceptance becomes pride in homogeneity–a celebration that is the antithesis of diversity. The irony is that we don’t even see when our myopic vision and histrionic demands have created an atmosphere of intolerance.
And just as pride touches us all regardless of our sexual orientation, it also touches us no matter where we stand on the globe. Pride does not surge where borders end or evaporate. Pride is something that is felt by most every thinking man or woman when reflecting on his home country. We feel a sense of honor and dignity when we think of our homeland and there is no man that should be taken aback at a native’s love of home. This is called national pride and it exists in every country.
But in this strange time in which we live, where pride of nation is labeled racism and where a celebration of traditional family is called homophobia, we have clearly lost our way. Pride is not about enforcing one ideal as superior to another, it is about celebrating who we are, where we come from and our contributions. It’s about embracing and accepting those who are different and whose cultures and orientations fall elsewhere on the spectrum from ours.
Pride is not something that will ever go out of style, it just needs to be understood.
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