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Thursday, September 27, 2012

Glasgow Pride: A day of equality, but not for me!

The day for Pride in Glasgow arrived and an early rise was had by all. My friends and I headed up to Glasgow hoping this year would be the biggest yet.
Because public transport isn’t always reliable, and my hair products let me down on occasion, we had to concede a late arrival into the city.
As we arrived we found ourselves in Bath Street, feeling rather lost and trying to estimate where exactly the march would be. As we all stood around, slightly dazed, I saw four other women. Now I hate to presume that they were lesbians, or indeed in Glasgow for Pride, but I think the obvious collection of rainbow merchandise was a bit of a give away!
We didn't speak with these women, but it was reassuring to presume they were in the same state of confusion as us.
I felt after a while that we were playing a game of “Where’s Wally?” We decided to head down to George Square for a beer. Okay that’s a lie—a shandy—I’m not that hardcore so early in the day... What do you take me for?!
With everyone awaiting the arrival of the marchers, people were all in good spirits; drag queens and rainbow-coloured almost everything you can think of. There was even a small Chihuahua dog wearing a sailors hat—as you do!
She-boom, a drumming group, led everyone into the Square in their fabulous style, along with more marchers than I have ever personally witnessed at Glasgow pride—which was truly fantastic!
Every person it seems has a different perception as to why they attend Pride. Some say it’s to celebrate that we are gay; yet if that is the case then why don’t we have straight pride and so on?
I believe it’s a day to celebrate what we have achieved in society as a minority over the years with regards to equality, and how we, as the part of the LGBT community, have tried to change the world we live in. Though there is lots more work still to do, we should be very proud of what we have achieved so far.
The title of this blog is “Glasgow Pride: A day of equality, but not for me.” The reason behind this is because my day personally wasn’t the greatest.
Our friend asked to bring her male partner along for a drink. We agreed, because, of course, the more the merrier.
Our intention was to stay and drink in the Merchant City part of Glasgow, as that was where the parties were happening.
Things started off well. We had already planned exactly where we were heading that day and the Ark was our first choice, a rather relaxed Glasgow bar with reasonably priced beer. We all sat in the beer garden and listened to the live music coming from George Square.
We left there and headed round to Dels, a—shocker—gay pub! However, our friend's partner stated, “I’m not going in there, no chance.” To which I replied, “Why not?”
“It’s a gay pub,” he said, as he stood on the street trying to cower away like he was going to be viciously attacked by handsome gay men. I must admit I was shocked by his behaviour, but to keep him happy we agreed to head to Bacchus instead.
In Bacchus we had a conversation with regard to the previous incident, and my obvious disbelief. I stated to him that I don’t believe in such a thing as a gay pub, only gay-friendly venues. The reason being every pub is gay, straight, bi-sexual and so on, because no-one walks about with a badge on stating their preferences.
His reply to my statement was, “I wasn’t brought up that way, I don’t mind lesbians but I hate gays.”
I personally feel that his statement “I wasn’t brought up that way” is used too much, and I believe it’s just an excuse for inequality and ignorance. We live in the 21st century and I honestly cannot believe I even had this conversation.
He then went onto state, “Where I stay I don’t know anyone that’s gay”.
I know that judgment, ignorance and inequality will never really leave society completely. I understand that, and I know if I believe any different then I’m being rather naive, but I also believe that we do not have to tolerate it, or be in the company of small-minded, uncouth individuals.
Over the period of that day I heard some shocking things, and I know I can’t single handedly change the world like a lesbian Spider-woman, but I will try my bloody hardest while I’m here.
I don’t care if you are LGBTS (lesbian, gay, bi- sexual, transgender/sexual, straight) black, brown, white or bloody tartan even…