Pride is a Distraction

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I’m such a bad dyke. Not only am I against gay marriage and gays joining the army, but as it turns out, I am against gay pride. Not only for the obvious reasons – the domineering divas and muscle boys fighting for limelight or scoping for ass, the alarming number of corporate sponsorships, the cheap necklaces and the inevitable eurotrash house music. The women getting buried underneath it all. As usual.

Queers should not be proud. “What?! We shouldn’t be proud, you evil dyke!?” you ask.
No, we shouldn’t. We need to escape the pride paradigm completely. Skip it; control, alt, delete it.
Pride came as a reaction to shame. It is the reverse side of the coin as exoticism is to racism.

With the concept of pride, we remain inextricably and implicitly tied to shame, something we should never have submitted to in the first place. Homosexual shame is something the heterosexual power establishment invented.
Queers should have anger parades, not pride parades. Angry at the years spent feeling ashamed, then proud, then ashamed again.

Angry at our parents and teachers and classmates and co-workers. Angry at those kids who bullied us, infecting our queer bodies and souls with their violence. Angry about those parents who cried or felt disappointed about us, or who disowned us. Angry at the friends who stopped talking to us. Angry at the teachers who made fun of our gay way of walking. Angry at the religious leaders who decided our distance from God. Angry at the straight people who make daily efforts to “accept us for who we are.” Anger at buying into the idea of a heterosexual power establishment, For playing along; being cute and proud.

As long as we spend our time oscillating between shame and pride, we will fail to see how cheaply we have sold our priceless vital anger for cheap pride necklaces. And I don’t think those who maintain the heterosexual power structure mind one bit. The true accounting for what has been and continues to be taken from us never occurs. Homophobic straight people owe us.

Every time we felt shame, we bought into their project. It was a trick.

Who we are is as complex, as boring, as funny, as sporty, as intellectual, as banal and as beautiful as the next person. If we agree to feel pride about it, it means that at some point in our life, we agreed to feel shame. Ideas are dangerous things. Let us teach our queer youngsters to never make this agreement. And let us not give our straight youngsters any ideas except that they should be afraid to mess with the queer kid in their class… To even think about it.

Contributed by EuroArabe and previously published in Bekhsoos September 2008 issue. We are re-publishing here as part of an attempt to highlight some of our brilliant older articles that didn’t get as much reach as Bekhsoos does now.

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