Sunday, was the pride parade here in Pittsburgh. This was my first pride parade experience. My friend Anthony that I met at Robert Morris University, asked me to walk in the parade with him. His mom works for EQT, and we would be representing EQT in the parade. I was honored he asked me, and I always wanted to go to the pride parade with him, but life got in the way in the years past. Anthony, Dylan, and Allie are three amazing people, who I met at Robert Morris University in a theater class. I have since lost touched with Allie, but Anthony and Dylan I talk to them at least once a week.
Yes, Anthony and Dylan are gay, but they are the best friends a girl could ask for in life. Anthony, is very dear to me. He taught me to laugh again, and has opened my eyes to their cause and what it means to be “gay.” I had so many questions before I met him. I hadn’t known any gay people, ever before meeting him. I have seen gay people, but never really understood them. Anthony was so patient and understanding when I would ask questions, that may seem ignorant, but I wanted to know more, and I wanted to understand; more importantly. Admitting that one doesn’t know, but wants to know and understand is part of the quest for knowledge.
After, I became friends with Anthony, I met Dylan, Allie, Ray, Jason, and before you know it I was labeled a “fag hag.” I am completely okay with that title. I love my friends gay or not. However, there are some people who choose not to ask questions. They chose not to understand, and just want to pass judgement. I feel so sorry for those people, because they are missing out on some fabulous men and women, who simply just want to be seen as equal.
When I first, arrived to the parade, I tried to prepare myself for something out of my comfort zone, and to try to keep an open mind. We met up with the rest of the EQT group. Up and down the sidewalks, men and women, drag queens, straight people, children with parents (gay and straight); were all gathered to celebrate equality, love, and life. It was beautiful, actually. There was a sense of oneness and happiness in the air, and it almost made me tear up. I thought if this is how humanity could be to one, another then there wouldn’t be a need for war, guns, and violence. The world would be beautiful, if we could be more like the people at the pride parade united, accepting, happy, and in love with life.
All along the outskirts of the parade there was a heavy police presence to keep us safe. Across the street there were a few “Christian” protesters preaching the Bible over a megaphone and holding signs saying, “Homo Sex is a Sin” and “Homosexuals are an abomination.” I made it a point to look at them and remind myself, that this is what close minded people look like, and this is how they act. These so-called “Christians” are so judgmental, and hateful. We just kept marching on clapping and cheering and celebrating the oneness of humanity, and equality for everyone no matter their sexuality. I was honored to be a part of this day.
I dedicated this blog post to the people of Orlando and their families, and to the many people who have lost their lives because they liked someone of the same sex. My heart and positive thoughts are with you. We are in this together.