This year sees the fiftieth anniversary of Pride in the UK. I’ve listened and read to the interviews of those who were there. Bless them, what an amazingly brave thing to do back in the 70s as well. 🏳️🌈 Hearing from people who managed to gather their courage and go to a Pride event or gay venue for the first time, that was really moving.
I also, felt a touch of guilt around Pride. What I mean is, I don’t go to the one in the city and represent Chameleons. I help run the group, I run outreach Q&A sessions, I help organisations update their policies, I try to help parents who email the group, blah de blah blah, etc; but I don’t walk down the street helping hold up the banner. I feel I should, but I’m worried about my family’s privacy and safety.
The other stuff I do, well, those involved have been kind enough to share how it helps – and please, don’t think this is trumpet blowing or humble brag nonsense 🙁 – it’s not. It’s more that… it’s that I might be able to walk down the street in Lynn mode, but I’m struggling to balance family life with what I feel I should be doing publicly to help try and keep things progressing. Particularly in pushing back against the weekly nonsense being written about people like me, or, more worryingly, people like our son.
I wondered if being out at work would help? Help, as in normalise being genderfluid, even if I’m always in Richard mode (feel feel to have a laugh at me being ‘normal’, it’s fine 🙂). Maybe be more active in the organisation’s LGBTQ network? Although there’s that worry about stepping on peoples’ toes by trying to get involved. Sheesh, this is complex.
Perhaps, all I can do, is – other than try not to beat myself up about what I’m not doing – but keep doing what folk are asking for help with. Sure, it’s leaning on an open door, but isn’t it better to get those who want help, than try to change those who are dead against ‘those people’? 🤔
It seems that right now, Pride and the support from allies is more important than ever. The inaction and, in certain areas, wilful ignorance in our current government, is allowing a hostile environment to grow. As with the last round of media scapegoating (2016), now it’s the turn for another moral panic to distract the public from what’s going on in Westminster.
So, next time someone starts on about ‘why do they need Pride?‘, the answer might well be, until we’re equal.