Posts tagged Toronto Gay Pride parade
No matter where I am, year after year when the Toronto Pride Parade takes over downtown I beam with pride myself. Although I myself am not gay and do not fit into the LGBT designations I have a great appreciation for the community. Growing up I was surrounded by the mixed feelings of others about homosexuality. I think any and all of us who have lived through the 80s and 90s have at one or more points run into careless comments of prejudice and misunderstanding about LGBT people and even some of us may have said something that can be construed as offensive to gay people. But when I see huge crowds at the Toronto Pride Parade celebrating sexual diversity I am always staggered by the times we now live in where prejudice, racism, hatred, and fear are no longer the norm but the outcast exception.
True, there are still pockets of the above hatreds (i.e. the ugly anti-Israeli “Apartheid” movement that wanted to crash the parade) but I’m happy that they are no longer accepted as normal public discourse they way they were, say, 30 or 50 years ago. The issue of sexual diversity, to me, was always a peculiar one as I grew up because although I went to schools that I suppose would not condone homosexuality, when I came home I still had two gay uncles and a close cousin who came out when I was 12. In my mind I figured that my uncles (one related and one not) were in love, lived together and were happy – so, awesome. There didn’t seem to be anything “wrong” with them, despite what the teachers said. They were two perfectly normal men with jobs, hobbies, cars and all that – they just happened to be in love with each other. As for their hobbies – they happened to enjoy decorating their apartment so it was way classy, preferred food and wine of top quality, and loved to travel. If anything I was in awe of their sense of good taste and none of it seemed weird at all. Even now I love going over and hanging out as it means I get to marvel at their baby grand piano, eat beautifully prepared food, peruse through their travel scrapbooks and secretly borrow selections from their classical music collection. They’re thrilled that I live with a roommate who’s gay and are noticeably more open about their experience together, which is great.
I wasn’t living in Toronto when same-sex marriage was ratified nationwide in 2005 but I was so proud to be a Canadian that day on July 20 (a day after my birthday) and I knew that my uncles were proud to be part of it. II made it a point to make it out to the Toronto Pride Parade this year and I got some really great pictures. As you look at them, think about what a great time it is to be alive and appreciate it. I certainly do.