Pride is the first of the seven deadly sins, and I believe I know why.
Before leaving Greece, I experienced the rise of the far-right and realised one thing. Pride combined with ignorance paves the shortest path to fascism. When you are proud of something you haven’t accomplished, you lack the knowledge that comes with experience.
I sadly met people too proud of triumphs from the distant past. Sagas they didn’t know much about or hardly understood. Battles they never fought for. Myths that made them think they are somehow better.
But LGBTQ+ pride is different. LGBTQ+ children still struggle to find a place in hetero-normal schools. The path to self-acceptance in hostile surroundings is long and it is our community that suffers. Our brothers and sisters are getting harassed and murdered all around the world… All I am trying to say is that we are winning our pride with every breath we take.
Our kind of pride is the one that comes with knowledge. The kind of pride earned through overcoming struggles, solving problems or spreading greatness. Braving hardships always teaches us a few lessons on the way. It unites and inspires us. This is the kind of pride that makes our world better.
This is how I approached the idea of pride when I asked: “What makes you proud to be LGBTQ+?” and “What makes you proud to be part of the LGBTQ+ community?”
LGBTQ+ people survive institutions that would rather we remain invisible and societies that would seek to crush us. We help the world see diversity and inclusion from a different perspective. We are misfits who challenge the way things happen. We accelerate social innovation in a world that needs us. Our individual hardships may be great but united we are making the world a better place. And that’s what makes me proud.
What makes you proud to be LGBTQ+?
Some of your answers
I can be my whole self and can empathise with others who are in minority groups or situations. I also like that I can see things through another person’s lens and can help influence people in accepting people like me, just through being me. — Tish
The “freedom” as a person. Being able to come out without being afraid or feel judged. Love whoever I want. Proud of the supporters we’ve gained along the way. Proud of evangelizing love, equality, and diversity. — Anonymous
It gave me self-confidence, I chose my “own” family, there are so many out there :-) — Anonymous
Having the struggle with the own identity made me think a lot about my self and getting to know me, my feeling, my thoughts, and my fears. This is what made me a strong independent person and this makes me feel proud about being LGBTQ+. — Kevin
I’m happy to be connected to a history of resilience and being able to think about my strong PoC, trans and gender nonconforming ancestors who made my potential liberation possible. But I also think it’s difficult to be proud of something you can’t change. — Anonymous
I overcame my own emotional avoidance and feelings of societal rejection to come out of the closet very early (I was 15 years old, in 1996, which was before Ellen came out on her show). That — Kevin Eslinger
To be part of a heritage full of strong, brave and inspiring people. — Gerard, Madrid