OPINION: Understanding Pride

By Nick Seebruch
OPINION: Understanding Pride
Mayor Bernadette Clement helped hold the flag during the parade (John MacGillis/ Seaway News).

CORNWALL, Ontario – Diversity Cornwall organized their annual Pride Parade and Festival this past Sunday. It had a great turnout, but I want to address some of the comments that the public left on the story we posted about the event on social media.

A frequent comment I’ve seen is asking why there isn’t a straight pride parade, the answer is simple, because there have been few if any cases where an individual has been persecuted for being straight.

There are over 70 countries in the world where homosexuality is illegal, there are no countries in the world where heterosexuality is illegal.

In the United States, in April of this year, an Executive Order from Donald Trump came into effect that prevents all transgender people from serving in the U.S. military. I’m of the opinion that there is no need for such a ban, and that the ban is only in place due to prejudice. This is discrimination against the LGBTQ community happening in our time, on our continent in what is supposed to be the most advanced country in the world.

Is Pride a celebration? Yes, but more importantly it is a demonstration. A demonstration that there is support for those who experience persecution for who they are, whether it be in Canada, Saudi Arabia, Chechnya or anywhere else.

Another comment I saw on our story, was in regard to the children who were at the Pride events on Sunday. Ignoring the eloquent response of “up yours” to those who questioned his stance against children at the parade, at least one commenter felt that having children at Pride events amounted to “indoctrination”. Isn’t children going to Sunday School a form of indoctrination? Having them involved in sports, or any activity is going to influence them in some way. None of these things are necessarily bad, and the advocated message from Pride seems to be one of acceptance and love, two messages that I think are very appropriate for children.

The events run by Diversity Cornwall were inclusive to all, regardless of race, language, gender, or sexual orientation.

Events like the bath house raids in Toronto happened in this country, in many of our lifetimes. Pride shows people that it is okay to be who they are, gay or straight. Pride is not about “putting sexuality in your face” as I’ve seen some say, but rather about solidarity and acceptance for people who have experienced harsh persecution from their neighbours, or employer, or government, or some coward sitting behind a keyboard who takes pleasure in hurting others.

I have yet to see a good argument as to why anyone would be opposed to Pride. If you believe in reach out an arm and uplifting those who have been persecuted through a

message of acceptance and love, than I think that is what the true meaning of Pride is all about.

What do you think readers? Email me a Letter to the Editor at nicholas.seebruch@tc.tc

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