I was kindly invited by Joseph Nussbaum to show at Gallery J, located on the Second Pride West sim at this year’s Second Pride Festival, which kicked off last night in SL. There is a lot to see over there and there will be a lot of different events and stuff, you can get the calendar of events here. Here are a few pictures of the gallery and my pieces of work on show there. There is lots of very nice work on display from various SL residents, so go check it out for yourself.
So why do we have Second Pride Festival? Which is the international gathering of LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bi and Trans) people in the virtual world, and their friends and supporters. Or Pride at all across the world in RL. Lots of people who are not LGBT ask this. Or say stuff like ‘why isn’t there straight pride,’ or ‘why do you need to go around flaunting your sexuality,’ and so on.
Firstly, it’s not about flaunting sexuality. It’s simply about saying, it’s okay to be me, this is how I was created and I am not ashamed of who I am. Growing up LGBT, you get a lot of negative messages and rejection from the people around you, from the media, even your family and friends, that can hurt your self confidence and even cause long term self esteem issues and emotional damage. Pride attempts to address that damage done and reinforce positive messages about identity. It offers a place to find support and to learn about LGBT history. As for straight pride, come on people, you have it every day, lol. The day you are kicked out of home, or verbally or physically attacked for your sexuality, or fired from your job, or live in fear of persecution or even imprisonment for being straight, come and talk to me again about straight pride. LGBT continue to face such problems every single day such as
LGBT youth being bullied in school and in the worst cases driven to suicide because of who they are
LGBT youth homelessness
Homophobic attacks and hate crime continues against LGBT people, carried out on our streets and in our communities every day
Equal marriage is still an issue in many countries
Equal rights even more so, some countries around the world still actively persecute and criminalise LGBT People, just for being who they are
Pride brings the LBGT community together and allows us a safe place to have fun without judgement from others, it educates within our own community and in the wider community to help the battle for equality and acceptance, and gives LGBT people a voice.
That’s just a few reasons, I’m not going to go on and on about it. If you are interested to know the history of Pride and more about it, there are many many articles on the web that you can read. You don’t have to be LGBT to support Pride either, there are ‘Straight against Hate’ groups and basically just being a nice human being and treating others as you would like to be treated goes a long way. Loving each other is the answer to probably every problem there is in this world.
Happy Pride :)