Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Since 2003, there have only been two years where I didn't attend a Pride parade.  One year I was in Santa Barbara for summer school; the other year I was studying abroad in England.  Now, living no more than two miles and as little as one block from All Things Seattle Gay Pride, it is interesting to look back at my high school and early-college days when taking a 45-minute BART ride into San Fransisco was no inconvenience at all.

So much has changed over the years, but one very important thing hasn't:  I'm still as supportive of equal rights and marriage for all who want it as I've ever been.

Last Friday night, New York officially legalized gay marriage, becoming the most populous state in the nation to do so.  (Well, that is, unless you count California which is currently appealing the passing of Prop 8 at the federal court level.  I'll just have to wait to officially celebrate that accomplishment.)  While I may not be a resident of NY, I have many friends who are—many of which this directly effects.  When I heard the news on my way to a friend's apartment, I just couldn't contain myself!  Living in Capitol Hill, you could feel the excitement that this country has taken one more step towards true equality.

For those who don't support gay marriage (or civil unions, for that matter), the mention of "equality for all" is probably sounding a lot like a broken record.  Just remember this: over 50 years ago, when African Americans in the south were finally allowed to step foot in "white" public schools, there was outrage against them... same as the outrage against gays and lesbians today.  Now, looking back at that dark-yet-inspiring time in history, who is remembered for their courage and strength?  And who is remembered for their hate and violence against others?

I want to tell everyone still standing against gay marriage (like those who stood for segregation, and against interracial marriage): When you look back on today, 50 years from now, which side do you want to say you were on?

Okay, that's the end of my soapbox.

Pride weekend, every last weekend of June, has since its inception been a time for celebrating one's personal and social freedoms.  And despite its commercialization over the years, there is love there.  People accept everyone, without judgement or pause.  That is special, and that is the feeling I look for when I attend the Pride Parade each year.

For the second year in a row, I've had the pleasure of exploring Pride festivities and people-watching with the love of my life, and I'm thankful every day that I've been blessed with such a supportive, accepting and open-minded partner.  That's what growth in love and life is all about, right?  Learning to accept the things that simply are, and focusing on your happiness and that of those around you—without it being at the expense of others.

Seems simple enough, right America?  Only time will tell.

Sending love and good thoughts to all of my friends (gay or straight or otherwise), wishing you all a calm and safe summer of excitement.

* Flag image by Ludovic Bertron via Flickr

EDIT: Amazing quotes from the anti-miscegenation (i.e. anti-interracial marriage) Wiki page that Jon commented with...

Judge Leon Bazille of the Virginia trial court, 1965, defending a ruling against married interracial couple Richard and Mildred Loving
"Almighty God created the races white, black, yellow, and red, and he placed them on separate continents. And but for the interference with his arrangement there would be no cause for such marriages. The fact that he separated the races shows that he did not intend for the races to mix."

US Supreme Court ruling in the case of Loving v. Virginia, 1967, which made it unconstitutional for a state to outlaw interracial marriage 
"Marriage is one of the 'basic civil rights of man,' fundamental to our very existence and survival.... To deny this fundamental freedom on so unsupportable a basis as the racial classifications embodied in these statutes, classifications so directly subversive of the principle of equality at the heart of the Fourteenth Amendment, is surely to deprive all the State's citizens of liberty without due process of law. The Fourteenth Amendment requires that the freedom of choice to marry not be restricted by invidious racial discriminations. Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not to marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State."

WOW!  I mean.  WOW!  How are we still struggling with this issue?!  And how is GOD still being used to govern the laws of the state?  What year is this?  Who's running this country—Bloody Mary?!? 

My neck is aching from all of this constitutional whiplash. Oy.


  1. Beautiful! I couldn't have said it better myself. I love your angle of looking back on this time the way we now look back on segregation, not to mention pre-suffrage era. How do people not realize this is no different? Thanks for sharing. Oh, and that photo is gorgeous!

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  3. Truth! Not to mention Anti-Miscegenation laws... yeah, we had those too at one time...

  4. It has been so many years since I've been to PRIDE, and I miss the excitement and the love that flow through the SF streets!

    And strangely enough, I've never been to LA Pride while I've lived down here. I'm determined to change that next year.

    And your post = my thoughts exactly. We talked about all this 10 years ago, it's insane that the country hasn't completely caught up.