Yesterday was the New York City’s Gay Pride March, and my neighborhood was pulsating with people in hot pants, colors, and really, really good vibes.
Earlier in the week, I happened to sit next to a group of young guys, fresh out of college, meeting up after their respective jobs in the area. After greeting each other, one of them asked the other one if they were going to celebrate Pride. He said, no, he didn’t see the point and that why didn’t the Straights go march in a parade. I’ve been trying to figure how to write about this since then.
Part of me gets where he is coming from. I think its part of human nature to want to not be the odd one out, to be part of the group. Let’s call that high school. (Back pats to those of you who managed to skip that awkwardness.) Combined with the inevitable self satisfied, know-it-all post collegiate airs (no arguments, we all did that), I’m inclined to think that if he thought about it for another minute, he wouldn’t have been so dismissive.
The other part of me couldn’t help but be utterly let down and disappointed by what he said. In my head, like an old person, I said, “What with the kids these days.” We were sitting literally two blocks from The Stonewall Inn, epicenter of the gay rights movement. We have only just celebrated the first year of New York State legalizing same sex marriage. The past is not that far behind us. The rights that those before us had to fight for, and the inequality that they had to face so we don’t have to, should never be taken for granted. It doesn’t matter what politics you ascribe to, what religious beliefs you hold, or where you stand in the world. Respect your elders. Say thank you.
And now let us look at pretty pictures.
By the way, there was at least 26.5x more exposed flesh than these photos would lead you to believe. I think my camera was feeling prudish or something.
Hope you had a great weekend too! Yay, New York!