Pride Season Comes to San Diego
Oh Pride Season... it’s like the beginning of Gay Christmas once Long Beach starts to brandish the telltale rainbow flags on Ocean Boulevard in May and the festive season lasts right through July when San Diego takes center stage. I admit it; those rainbow flags never fail to put me in a celebratory mood.
With the monumental Supreme Court decisions last month, there is even more reason to celebrate. DOMA is dead and Prop. 8’s appeal was dismissed. Already the marriages have resumed in sunny California, and more celebrations will be had accross the state. As San Diego and other summer Prides approach, the swell of happiness and revelry will likely be even greater than normal, as it should be!
We have many new rights to celebrate, and the support of the majority of the country and the top court of law to thank for that. Our work for full equality across the LGBTQIA spectrum is not over, there are many more battles to be won, but take this moment in history and recognizing it for all its worth and its incredible historic significance.
Still, every time I step through the gates of various Pride celebrations, it becomes immediately apparent that these are events catered to only one of the letters in the alphabet soup that has become our acronym over the years. Yes, the G is overwhelmingly represented and the LBT(QIA)’s are either underrepresented or absent. But this year there seems to be progress - slow, yet steady progress. Long Beach kicked off its Pride with the first Dyke March to be hosted in the city and activist Robin Tyler spoke openly about the need for gender inclusiveness (referencing the ongoing debate plaguing the Michigan Womyn’s Festival and their "women born women" stance).
Adding to that message was grassroots group Queering Long Beach, who joined the march to promote a message of acceptance of all gender, sexuality, and race identities. Los Angeles followed suit in June with their annual Dyke Day at Barnsdall Park and The Dyke March ending with the special one-night-only Purple Party community celebration, as well as seeing Trans Pride expanding its celebration and reach.
Now with San Diego gearing up to take the reigns, I look forward to some of the great events and performers in Balboa Park and all the other venues throughout the city. I am also hopeful that we will be seeing more diversity within the festival and the surrounding events continuing to spread.