July 1998

Jim from Houston, TX

Well it is now the middle of June and it's pride month. Of course by the time you read this it will be over but better late than never. I just wanted to pass along a few thoughts on why I think Pride Month is important to gays.

I think the most important outcome of Pride Month is that young gays, bi's, transexuals, and those who are sexually orientatedly challenged (this last one is a joke...a note for the sensitive readers), is that they get to see they are not alone. Hopefully they will visit or at least see on the news the local gay pride parades thus seeing the large number of gays that live in their area. Hopefully they will realize that they are not alone and perhaps even be inspired to contact a local gay youth organization to meet new friends and get help and support.

Secondly, I hope that the pride marches will open the eyes of straight people to the fact that there are many of us who live in their towns. Perhaps they will realize that the infamous "1 in 10" might just be true. The desired end result is that they will not write off the vocal few as just being that, FEW. We don't all have the courage to speak out but the vocal few are backed by the silent many.

Thirdly, Pride Month, in particular parades and festivals, give the silent majority a chance to "speak out" by just being a single face in a large crowd. We will not be identified individually, but we will be counted and that's important. We are a nation of numbers. Large groups get heard and small groups get pushed under the carpet. We cannot let this happen to us. You do not need to be on the cover of a magazine or speak publicly but at least be counted. Public functions are our only real census chance. If you look at a statistic published in a gay magazine about the number of gays in your town you might be willing to deny it's validity. But when faced with thousands of gays marching in the streets or attending festivals you can not deny the facts.

Well have a great month of July, I will. I am going to Norway to sail the coast line. It should be a great trip if the weather treats us right. The north sea is not the most loving environment for sailors. Wish me luck. If you wish to email me my address is: kiyotei@sprintmail.com.



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