Pride San Francisco

San Francisco hosted the first gay pride parade in the 1970s. At that time, and especially after city council member Harvey Milk had been assassinated for being gay, taking to the streets was an extremely brave and bold move. It was a declaration that the homosexual community of San Francisco would not be forced into hiding and made afraid, that they would declare themselves and claim their absolute right to live the life they choose to live. It was beautiful, but it was borderline militant. "I dare you to shoot me" the participants were saying.

That this has concept has evolved into a carnivalesque opportunity for "gleði" in Iceland is something I must say I do not entirely understand. All cultures need carnival, all communities like to come together. But the political fight for equality regardless of sexual orientation is to me a very serious affair, and in the streets of San Francisco, Gay Pride retains its political edge.


Valdimar said…
In Iceland „Gleðigangan“ is a family outing, reflecting the fact that ( the vast majority of ) Icelanders have decided not to tolerate discrimination based on peoples‘ sexual orientation.

We Icelanders have a thing or two to be proud of after all.

I remember bumping into the Gay Pride in SFO a few years ago. The participants’ anger and in your face attitude reflected an entirely different social consensus. Frankly, they scared me off with their presumption of hostility and scorn.
Lissy said…
In San Francisco, the "Gay Pride Parade" is now simply called the Pride Parade. In Iceland, it is the Gay Galavant. One is clearly more political and less amusing than the other.
Hildigunnur said…
I vastly prefer the Icelandic way. After all, hardly anybody here cares if you're gay or straight, we're all just people. The trans ppl are still fighting for legal rights, that's not quite there yet, though.

A Norwegian bi friend of mine was totally amazed to see the rainbow flag in every single shop window on Laugavegur, he said this would never happen in Norway.

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