GAY PRIDE

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Facebook’s LGBTQ-themed features. Facebook

“Gay pride is an oxymoron. Homosexuality is a sin. To march in parades under the gay pride banner is an open display of rebellion against culture, against morality.”

BIG NO.

I apologise to every gay and straight person. The above comments aren’t from me and I will never say that to any of my gay or straight friends. For one, it’s degrading. It’s baseless and unfair. Lastly, love is love. What’s not to celebrate?

Celebrated each June to commemorate the Stonewall Riots in 1969, Pride Month is a time to uphold our key values of love, acceptance, education and awareness, while remembering the struggles and victories in the ongoing fight for LGBTQ equality and visibility worldwide.

The LGBTQ community receives senseless hate posts online. Photo: Twitter

Pride Month is about everyone: no matter who or how we love, or how we identify.

Pride is about reveling in the diversity of the community, and taking action in the face of intolerance, misinformation and ignorance.

Before this month ends, I’d like to dedicate this column to the LGBTQ community.

Coming out online

Every day, younger generation of gays are less alone because the world of online networking makes it possible to connect with other LGBTQ people all over the world. And it’s a great thing.

The internet has changed what it means to come out as an LGBTQ person. Particularly for young people, online support can make a world of difference to the process of coming out.

Photo: Twitter

In a journal article of Brian Jacobson and Brooke Donatone entitled ‘Homoflexibles, Omnisexuals, and Genderqueers: Group Work with Queer Youth in Cyberspace and Face-to-Face’, they noted, “the queer youth of today are significantly different from lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender youth of yesteryear. Not only are they coming out at an earlier age than ever before, but they are also identifying themselves in increasingly varied and fluid ways, which account for both sexual orientation and gender identity. In addition, they are coming of age in a world that is characterised by new ways of communicating and connecting with others.”

They emphasised, “use of the Internet has particular implications for LGBT youths in terms of gaining support for coming out, addressing identity issues, and increasing comfort in discussing difficult material with others. This is especially useful for students struggling with coming out issues regarding sexuality or gender and those who do not want to be identified by peers.”

Yes, the internet has brought so much good. However, it has also introduced new pressures and ways for people to scrutinise, judge and criticise each other.

The Trevor Project works tirelessly year-round to provide life-saving resources, support LGBTQ communities. Photo: Twitter

Branded pride

Brands around the world are eager to express and show their support to the members of LGBTQ community. From donating to charities to hiding rainbow items in their apps. In various ways, it’s good to see organisations celebrating the anniversary month of the Stonewall riots.

Various companies and organisations are celebrating LGBT Pride, check out what they are saying on social media below!

Universal love

Prince Manvendra of India, the world’s first openly gay prince, who came out on the Oprah Winfrey Show once said, “I felt there was a lot of need to break this stigma and discrimination which is existing in our society. And that instigated me to come out openly and talk about myself. Whether we are gay, we are lesbian, we are transgender, bisexual or whatever sexual minority we come from, we have to all unite and fight for our rights. Gay rights cannot be won in the court rooms, but in the hearts and the minds of the people.”

Photo: Twitter

After he came out, he was disowned by his own family and judged by the majority. Nevertheless, he freed himself.

It’s true, the online world makes you something that you’re not, but you know inside what and who you truly are. Some people have the courage to break free, not to accept limitations imposed by the colour of their skin or by the beliefs of those that surround them. Some make use of the technology to express and expose themselves.

So the question now is, are we truly making our LGBTQ friends gay and proud?

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