Brighton Pride matters to me because Pride matters to me. And it means so much more than a blow-out in the park or a set of a lifetime in a dance tent or a terrace. It means life. My queer life, your queer life, our queer life. Here’s my take on the reasons why as recently published on Pride Brighton & Hove’s website. Pride matters. Today more than ever.
Recently I was asked by a relative trying to understand my sexuality why does there need to be Pride? Why parade and why, as they so kindly put, flaunt it? My answer? I take part in Pride because I can. Because it’s personal. I enjoy a freedom barely imagined less than fifty years ago. Private homosexual acts between adult males were only decriminalised in 1967, when my missus was 4 years old. The Stonewall Riots happened in 1969, the year I was born, and without them and the social changes they propelled, my life would have been very different.
The first UK Gay Pride marches didn’t happen until the early 1970s and the brave souls who risked their professional and social lives to make a stand for equality deserve not only our unending appreciation but also our proud action. I parade so I can march beside them. Thanks to them equality in the UK is a right, but there are too, too many countries across the globe where it is not. Pride matters to me because I can stand beside those in Russia, Uganda, India, Iran, Nigeria and the 78 others where homosexuality is illegal. The bullied, the frightened, the persecuted, the imprisoned, the hunted.
Pride matters to me because it can be political, it can be campaigning and it, as seen with Pride Brighton & Hove’s support of the Brighton Supports LGBT Russia campaign, can make a difference. It is so much more than a lark in the sun, a dance in the moonlight. It’s a celebration yes, but it’s also a statement of intent that cannot be ignored. A statement I will continue to make until equality is a right, regardless of where one is born. So just like the drag queers and homos and dykes of Stonewall I will parade, campaign and, yes, flaunt it. Because Pride matters. Because Pride is not just for one day, it’s for life. Our global queer lives.
Super early bird tickets for Pride Brighton & Hove 2014 are now on sale. Grab yours before they sell out and ensure everyone knows why Pride matters. £9 Super Early Bird and £12.50 Early Bird ticket prices have been frozen / available while stocks last. Discounted £15 Advance (first release) available for a limited period. Tickets then go up to £15/£17.50/£20. More on the day. £1 of the price of every ticket sold will be ring fenced and donated directly to the Rainbow Fund. Grab them here www.brighton-pride.org/tickets