Every year, June is Pride Month. This is for all my LGBTQ (and any other letters) brethren. The theme is always the same, equality for all. I can personally only speak for the “G” part of the letters, and not all gay men would agree with me, but that’s kind of the point. We are all different, but equal. But I’ll step down off that soapbox, that’s not the point today.
I’d like to speak to my straight male readers. Now, granted, I know not everyone of you are homophobic idiots (if you actually read my blog, I’ll assume you arent, as I post a lot of “gay” content), but I’m going to speak in generalities, as this may reach a few newcomers or people that may not know what I’m all about.
I know a lot of people don’t understand Pride, or why we feel we need to have a celebration thereof every year. It’s a month of celebrating who we are as fellow human beings, we can be who we are, raise awareness for causes that directly affect us, and mostly celebrate how far we’ve come in our struggle for equality. But the fact that we NEED a pride month only illuminates how much further we have to go.
I get asked every year, “Why do you have to have a Pride Month, there’s no straight pride?” There are two great answers to this question. One, be thankful you don’t need to celebrate your pride. Two, EVERY month is straight pride. Straight people have never been attacked, persecuted, harassed, discriminated against, or even killed for being who they are. There is no need to celebrate something that is expected of you, or that is the cultural norm.
The common statistic is the 1 out of 10 people identify as LGBTQ, though I’m not sure if this is accurate. For the sake of argument, well say it is. But that means one tenth of the world’s population is not straight. We are talking millions and millions of people. It is not wrong, it is not perverse, it just isn’t like you. If everyone was the same, the world would be an extremely boring place.
Diversity is the key to life. Just like some of you straight guys are into different things, some of you prefer blondes, others brunettes. Some only like women of your race, others prefer another ethnicity. Some like skinny girls, others a thicker girl. Large boobs versus small boobs, etc. Not everyone looks the same, and not everyone likes the same thing. Simple as that.
But let me tell you a few things you should keep in mind.
-Most importantly (and I cannot stress this enough), just because I’m gay and you are a man doesn’t mean I want to have sex with you…you are not all “my type” or even in my sexual radar.
-Even if you are accepting of the LGBTQ community, saying things like “people like you”, “you gays”, or ANY derogatory term concerning our community is highly offensive.
-Your homophobia (should you have it) is probably caused by the fear gay men will objectify you and treat you the way you treat women.
-If a gay man is friendly to you, or even flirts with you, it’s because he feels comfortable being around you. We can’t thank you enough for that, and we don’t actually expect anything in return…just knowing we are accepted is enough.
-If you are one of those guys that is narcissistic and vain and just want people to tell you how hot you are all the time, there’s a gay out there for you (it isn’t me).
-Realizing we are just people and have the same issues you do is the best thing you can ever do.
-(piggybacking off my previous point) We are normal people, who or what we do in the bedroom is none of your business. It does not define who we are.
There are, of course, exceptions to these points. I cannot speak for 100% of gay people, only myself. I have many straight friends, and my relationship with each of them is different. I know who I can joke with, who I can speak freely in front of, and who I have to edit myself with. I have straight male friends I can flirt with (and know that it’s solely stroking their ego, not an actual come on), and some I cannot mention anything sexual in nature in front of. Gay men are good at reading a situation, and we will act accordingly.
No one wants to be treated differently. But Pride is a time we can celebrate openly who are. A time to gather together with people that are like minded and do not discriminate although we are different. A time to embrace our diversity. A time to raise awareness for issues specific to our community. A time to show our presence to those that would have us stay quietly in the background.
Until there is actual equality for all, there will be a Pride Month.