Monday, July 5, 2010
How to save Toronto's Pride Festival
So was Toronto's Pride a failure?
For the most part, it was a resounding success. The event itself was a gathering of hedonistic joy. It was made up of a million people from all over the world, attired in colorful, striking apparel, with attention seekers revelling in attention, gawkers with a visual cornucopia of sights to consume, and the mingling crowds sharing camaraderie and intimacy. It was what Pride was supposed to be - an ecstatic celebration of acceptance. Exactly the opposite of what the divisive, hateful "Queers Against Israeli Apartheid" represent.
The Pride Committee, by its repeated reversals of itself on disallowing the anti-Israel's group participation, has managed to eliminate the city's confidence in their ability to run the event and because of their "ruse," a motion is going to be introduced in City Council to retroactively de-fund Pride and eliminate city funding in the future.
It's about people coming together and having fun, not broiling in the sun while politicians and corporations and contentious interest groups self-promote.
The music and the streets taken over by pedestrians joined in camaraderie is Pride.
So to save pride, let the sponsors fund Pride's many music events and parties, where the anti-Israel bigots have no place.
let the City police and seal off the streets for these events and the parties that go with them during Pride Weekend.
And if Pride wants to have a parade that allows inclusion of a group seeking the elimination of the one-country that has Gay rights in the middle east, let the Pride committee find a way to pay for it without city funds, policing or permits.
Pride goes on.
Free speech is a great thing and we are all entitled to it. The Pride committee can now learn the meaning of Free speech. It means "free" not "taxpayer subsidized."
Queers Against Israeli Apartheid On Trial At Pride Toronto from Blazing Catfur on Vimeo.