In my role as Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer, I’ve been asked many questions about the celebration of Pride. I know that my thoughts are not universal, but I thought I might share some of my thoughts.
Our Royalty has called for a celebration of Pride in June. This confirmation of the East’s commitment to her Tygers, of all stripes, is novel and exciting. It may be imperfect for some, too broad, and simultaneously too narrow. I hope we can not allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good.
Some may have trouble with the ‘other groups’ part of the message. I can hear that. For many members of the community, Pride is about us, and not about them. It’s the one time of year that representation is central, and the Pride Flag, and events, should not be appropriated by ‘them’. The ‘them’ is the difficult part, for me. When Kris and I march and celebrate, we do so with members of the community, our allies, and other affinity groups. We know, too, that solidarity means that lots of different folx will be with us in Pride, just as we are with them in their struggles.
I know, too, that queerness is a spectrum of expressions, orientations, and identities. The message’s ‘other groups’ inclusion means that there is room for folx to participate how, who, and when they can be. If that means some people don’t meet someone’s litmus for queerness, I’m ok with that. I don’t want anyone to be the arbiters of who is queer enough to participate.
I hope, also, though that folx that want to be a part of the solution can leave space so that people that need the space can have the space.
As something new – I’m hoping that folx in the community will have some good ideas! I know there’s a court thing, and Kris and I plan on some visibility posts. I’d love to hear some ideas!
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer