Over the last month, the world has enjoyed the wonderful spectacle of Pride – the time when we celebrate diversity. It is a simple concept. People around the world get together, regardless of gender, colour or any of those social quirks that both bind and divide us as a species. It is a time when the rainbow flag, a truly universal image, is flown in shops, government buildings, households and even on the International Space Station, which is an amazing achievement in this world of competing ideologies.
So why is it, that despite the growth of this incredible movement, we still have a growing sense of dread when pride month comes around each year? Why is that we hear about threats against people, journalists covering the many events being beaten up and even murders? What is it that brings government institutions to ban or condemn pride parades or religious commentators to label the month as one of sin and shame?
It rests in the fact that more than anything else, the pride movement is a threat to the many millennia-long domination throughout the world by men. Men have had almost complete control of the world since the dawn of civilisation. They have been responsible for countless catastrophes, wars and disasters. While, a smaller percentage of women has contributed to these tribulations by and large their influence has been minute.
When we look at the attacks, constant insults and threats online, we mainly see groups of men behind those despicable acts. Yet, despite the outright fear of the movement, there is also an underlying hypocrisy in the actions and behaviour of some of these men that is widespread regardless of colour, creed or background.
The underlying secret is that a significant percentage of them are either practising homosexuals or indulge in same sex. Ask any man whether he knows another who is still hiding his sexual orientation and you will sometimes get a resounding ‘Yes’. Of course this is absolutely fine since not all men can simply come out. There may be family, children or work involved and reasons for remaining anonymous are totally justified.
Nevertheless, to make the decision to hide one’s sexual orientation, then to imply that it is disgusting and inhumane is an ultimate act of hypocrisy. Not only are they being untrue to themselves, but they are also allowing those who are brave enough to show the world to be ridiculed and endangered.
It is a selfish course of self-preservation; a decision to live out a lifelong lie, thus encourage hate and pain, even though they fully understand the emotions. They know the long term ramifications, but decide to say rather you than I.
It may be too late for much of that hypocritical generation, but there is hope for the future and that rests in the battle for acceptance and understanding of diversity. Communities need to teach their children simply that it is acceptable to be different; shaming someone for how they look or feel is wrong, that all people are equal under the banner of the rainbow flag.
Only then can we begin to remove the hidden hypocrisy and truly come out showing that we do not care who you are, as long as you simply are who you are.