AllanSweeney.com
 
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Brighton Pride graffiti
Anti-Pakistani racism, old-ageism, female-sexism, or anything else-ism is rightly wrong. It surprises me that there aren't bigger and more regular demonstrations to promote the Pakistani race, older people, or women. 

Perhaps I should mention I'm not a Pakistani, female, or gay. But perhaps the gay and lesbian movement is showing the way? With their Gay Pride marches and festivals around the world, "Pride" shows it's possible to demonstrate regularly, in positive ways, to support a movement, and prevent another divisive, hurtful, -ism. 

Yesterday I visited Brighton, a popular UK seaside resort, and host to UKs biggest annual free Pride festival. 

It almost didn't happen this year. Debts of more than $286,000 were owed to more than 20 companies and charities. It took a bailout by local businesses, and the creation of a new company to run the festival, to keep it going. 

So gays and lesbians can still express who they are in the annual Brighton Pride festival. They don't have to hide away, or be the subjected to -isms. They can dress and act in positive manners relevant to their lifestyle choices

Gay guys seem to dress in "groups". One group wore huge hair-dos, high heels, and micro-skirts. Another group wore shiny black hot pants, so tight little was left to imagination. Which, my friend Amanda said, is the reason they wear them. 

Of course, many dressed "normally", and thronged streets that were closed to glaring traffic, and opened to blaring music. Pubs overflowed with beers and gays. Lesbians sang, and swung beer mugs. It was a big, gay, happy day, with the type of peace, love and harmony you can only feel at a gathering of like-minded souls.  

The Open Episcopal Church (OEC) is a pioneer in supporting marriage for gays and lesbians. Last month, Bishop Jonathan Blake met the Prime Minister at 10 Downing Street, to explain how the OEC offers wedding blessings to gay and lesbian couples. Bishop Jonathan has already conducted the UKs first gay wedding.  

We should not have -isms against Pakistanis, older people, female equality, or gays or lesbians. Rather, to allow more beauty on this planet, we should allow everyone to be the people they are, and to live the lives they choose, in the peace, love and harmony so evident at this festival. 
 


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