Pride: We’ve Come A Long Way


What does Pride mean for our community today? We’ve certainly come a long way. Our historical roots run deep into blood-soaked ground, dank city basements and suburban hideaways. Some of us have endured brutality meant simply to shame. Some of us have had our lives ripped away, hung over fences or chained to and dragged for miles behind sick religious fanatics’ pickup trucks. For what? For loving. Our homo-ness is not going away, we’ve proven that. It’s not something to be exorcised or brutalized away. How we love is integral to who we are.

We take Pride in our history (yay for the parade), the struggles we’ve endured, the changes we’ve enacted toward equality which extend even beyond our own segment of humanity. Our plight has overarching implications for every community who struggles for basic human rights. We see that. It’s the big picture.

But what does Pride mean for me everyday? Beyond my gayness? Beyond my LGBT community and its politics? I am certainly more complex than my lesbian identity. I’m a lover and a partner. I’m a professional with a diverse background in technology and fiction and marketing. I’m a student and researcher. I’m an entrepreneur and a dreamer. I’m a sister and a daughter and a good friend. I’m a co-worker and business partner. I take pride in these relationships, in what I do, and in the details that comprise them. Pride for me is more than my identity as a lesbian, it’s in the stories I write, the ideas I dream up and more importantly, live.

What are you proud of? What do you take Pride in? Your industries and careers and families? Your partnerships and marriages? The companies you run and the customers you satisfy? The grass roots organizations you’ve helped grow and the beautiful things you create? How about the pleasures one takes in your work? In what you love?

Our gayness is a small yet integral part of who we are. We are powerful members of a greater society who have come out of the basement bars and into the corporations that we’ve built, with the families and partnerships we’ve created, and the dreams we continue to live. We have a lot to be proud of.

About The Author

Cynthia Vale is a budding scholar and doctoral student in Transformative Inquiry at the California Institute of Integral Studies. She writes the dot429 philosophy blog. You can reach Cynthia at

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