Friday, June 25, 2010

The Gay Community Reclaims the Pride Parade

I'm glad to see that the organizers of the Toronto Gay Pride parade have decided to reverse their ban on the words "Israeli Apartheid."

Although I'm not surprised. Because gay people have too many enemies to waste time fighting each other.

Just like I'm not surprised that Jonathan Kay is spewing this kind of hyperbolic garbage.

Because anyone who calls the gay parade a hate parade is either an idiot or a homophobe...or just plain CRAZY. 

And before he tries to inflict collective punishment on the gay community, maybe Kay should first ask Frank Dimant of B'nai Brith  what he's doing hanging out with this ugly collection of religious extremists and homophobes.

Or ask the Canada Israel Committee why it's insulting gay people, and hanging out with bigots like Kathy Shaidle.

Talk about HATEFUL. How dare these right-wing Israeli lobbyists try to intimidate the gay community? 

And while he's at it, maybe Kay can also ask Dimant why he's isn't  planning to challenge Pride Toronto's  Solomonic decision.

This means that when (QUAIA) fly their banners with the words Israeli Apartheid, they leave themselves open to a complaint from B'nai Brith, the group that originally pressured Pride to take action against QUAIA. That sets up the possibility of a fascinating legal hearing in which pro-Zionist groups will have to articulate exactly why the words Israeli Apartheid are anti-Semitic or, at least, discriminatory.

By taking QUAIA to court.

"We're disappointed in Pride's recent decision," he told NOW. "We thought the organizers acted courageously and that there wasn't going to be any hurtful words that would cause tremendous pain to the Jewish community.

"But we don't want to involve ourselves in a confrontation with the gay community."

Right. Victory is sweet. It was a good fight.

But I'm just glad it's over. So we can concentrate on some of these other gay issues.

Like this one. Or this one. The ones that threaten or diminish our lives right here in Canada. 

Oh yeah. And one more thing. Judith Timson can stick her stilettos where the sun don't shine.

“You've got to give us some time,” Rev. Hawkes pleads. “The gay community needs to wrestle with what this parade is all about.”

Better hurry. The forces who are licking their chops at a chance to discredit and dismantle not just the pride parade, but gay pride itself, aren't going to let this opportunity go by. And that really would be a tragedy.

Because I don't wear stilettos or plead for ANYTHING. Nobody is going to discredit or dismantle our parade, let alone our gay pride.

The Gay Pride Parade will ALWAYS be political, part of our long march to freedom. And the march to freedom of all other oppressed groups.

But this year I'm marching with Brian for Brendan

“It’s a real problem in our schools,” says Burke. “It’s a problem for gay kids, for small kids, anyone different. I hate bullies . . . I didn’t realize the magnitude of the problem. What Brendan would have wanted was for me to continue some of these things.

The gay community has reclaimed the pride parade.

And NOBODY will intimidate us again. Or tell us what to do with OUR parade.

Because we are the gay people of Canada.

And we are FEARLESS...


Skinny Dipper said...

I think your title says it all. The Pride Week debate is not about the use or banning of words; it's about who will control Pride--the LGBT community or outside forces.

There is always the threat of withdrawing financial support. However, without financial support modified LGBT events can still take place; without the LGBT community's support for Pride, Pride cannot take place as an LGBT event. Pride would merely become a City of Toronto community tourism event.

Cliff said...

It should be thrown in the face of anyone trying to de-ligitimize the word Apartheid as it applies to Israel's treatment of the Palestinians that when push comes to shove they are unwilling to put the accusation that the word is discriminatory or hate speech to the legal test.

"...we don't want to involve ourselves in a confrontation with the gay community." Sure. Not one you will lose and create a legal precedent by doing so that is.

Simon said...

hi Skinny Dipper...yeah I completely agree with you. In fact I'm starting to think that this unfortunate episode is a good thing. It made people think a bit more about the parade, and hopefully next year it will be less commercial, and more political and creative. I don't mind a smaller parade, I just want a gayer one... :)

Simon said...

hi Cliff...yes it should indeed. This whole nonsense about not being able to criticize the Israeli government without being called a hatemonger really needs to be aired out in a court. Because it's time it was laid to rest.
And yes...Dimant can say what he wants. But I still call it SURRENDER... :)

Bruno Laliberté said...

i'll tell you: they were at the montreal's gay pride parade yesterday, shortly after the jewish float, and it didn't cause an uproar. we may our own concerns, but it doesn't mean we don't care about other issues. far from it and we have the right to express our opinions, just like anybody else. do we have freedom of speech in this country, or not?!?

i personally support the idea. the palestine matter is long overdue to be addressed.