Sunday, May 8, 2011

Gay People

We checked out the 2011 installment -and 30th anniversary- of Northampton's annual Gay Pride Parade. Or simply Northampton Pride, as it's come to be called.

The attendance seemed just a scoche off compared to last year, but there was a healthy showing among the LGBT community, the supporters, and the gawkers.

Perfectly late as usual we still managed to find a good viewing perch above the fray along the railroad bridge spanning the route, and in time to view the majority of the proceedings.

Kelly and I count ourselves among the multitudes of supporter-gawkers, as my camera subject choices and some gay acquaintances and a Pride Survey will attest.

We're not fervent, but hey, we're there.

I suspect it's detached side liners like us that make up the bulk of attendance at an event like this.

And it's probably the casual spectators like us that have helped slowly transform, for better or worse, this once risk-filled march for equality into the easy going celebratory parade it is now...

...replete with vendors, hawkers, and corporate sponsorship.

As I've read recently, some of the old time warriors and original marchers have lamented that the cause has lost it's way, that too many groups seem to have a dog in the fight now.

Still, what may be seen as a decay of the fighting spirit exhibited 30 years ago...

...could just as well be considered unintended consequences of accomplishment. Coat tail riders and fair weather friends inevitably come part and parcel with success. While there's more to do and more to achieve; with the front lines of the battle having come such a considerable way...

...maybe there's cause to celebrate a little.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the colorful display of photos -- helps brighten up another gray day Those of us who couldn't make it to Pride are especially happy to see people having such a good time. Too bad we missed it, especially the synchronized grocery carts!