Pride in the heat of summer

Why does PRIDE always happen on what seems to be the hottest day of the year when there are no clouds for shade and the humidity climbs closer toward 99%?

I’ll tell you why.

We celebrate who we are in the middle of the dog days of summer because that is when our drag queen foremothers and butch dyke forefathers took up arms and fought for our freedom. They fought for my freedom and for yours. On what was probably a hot and humid night, they refused to be subordinated, sabotaged, harassed and arrested for simply being themselves. Even though I hate walking around downtown in the heat, dodging advertisers, religious nutjobs, ex-friends, ex-lovers and my past lives, I attend the event in my metropolitan area because I honor the past. At this event, the police are there to keep the peace. What an incredible change from 41 years ago. On a hot, humid night in late June when the conditions were just right, a group of people refused to be treated as second-class citizens. It was a perfect night to start a riot. It was time for another major step forward in the process of making widespread and lasting change, starting with one day of resistance to discrimination.

I celebrate “gay pride” (sexual minority pride?) because I am thankful for the sacrifices of my drag queen foremothers and my butch dyke forefathers. Today, I honor and salute everyone who has ever come before me in this struggle for true freedom.


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