Saturday, 4 July 2009

Happy Gay Pride Day, everyone!



I am ecstatic - it's Gay Pride Day at last!

I have always been a stalwart activist for gay rights and for Gay Pride. I have attended every Pride event since 1991 (and I was also there in 1985). I have raised hundreds of signatures for Stonewall's Clause 28 and Age of Consent campaigns (in Newport!), and I was the first ever gay widow(er) to get a pension out of Devonport Naval Dockyard, Plymouth (after a battle).

I've seen annual Pride events that had hundreds of people, then thousands, then hundreds of thousands. I have watched as commercial elements took over, then collapsed. I winced at the attempt to transform "Pride" to "Mardi Gras", and the endless arguments about the order in which the "L", "G", "B" and "T" should be placed.

Although just being there is probably enough to make a statement, we always like to add a bit more spectacle - planning costumes is a year-round exercise, and every year we get more and more people adding to our "dressing-up" ensemble. I still look forward to this every year...

And just because I want to celebrate the fabulousness that is Pride... remembering the very first event I attended in 1985 when there were no more than a couple of hundred people in Jubilee Gardens, Tom Robinson was the headline act, and a certain Divine floated past on a barge singing her tits off, here she is!

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