Wednesday, June 7, 2023
Pride used to be over and done with in a day. Now it lingers around like norovirus. And for an increasing number of lesbians and gay men like myself, it induces similar symptoms.
The whole of June is now given over to Pride Month. And just as the duration has changed, so has the tone. The parades are starting to resemble a rainbow version of the Orange March. Rather than celebrating the liberation of the oppressed, they seem designed to bully the public into supporting the movement.
What Pride celebrates has changed significantly, too. Kink is now the order of the day. Every year you’ll see ‘pups’ (men who dress as dogs) being led on all fours by their dog-handlers. Often these pups are dressed in bright Teletubby colours and children are often seen petting them. What could possibly go wrong?
In recent years, much of Pride’s focus has also turned to trans. In Edinburgh last week, NHS staff staged a Pride march from the Royal Hospital for Children and Young People, where a large trans flag has already been installed in the reception area, to the Royal Infirmary. Some doctors and clinicians, who worry about the over-promotion of gender-identity treatments to vulnerable young people, argued that this march was an attempt to intimidate them into silence. They’re right.