Home' South Florida Gay News : SFGN 061715 Contents soflagaynews // SouthFloridaGayNews // SFGN.com // 6.17.2015 // 29
Pride is a funny concept, with both positive
and negative connotations. It goeth before a fall.
It makes a combustible pairing with prejudice.
The Marines, though few, lay claim to it. Pride
can be overweening. It can blind us to the needs
of others. But it can also remind us of what is
important in life: our children, our families, our
Personally, I'm proud I can make it through a
work day, arrive home in time for my son's school
bus, pry him away from video games and on to
homework, throw in a load of laundry (including
the dress shirt said son needs for his band concert
and that has somehow ended up in a heap on his
closet floor), do a few more hours of work myself,
and get dinner on the table for the family.
You know: getting through an average day like
many parents. Still, even though it's routine, we
shouldn't take it for granted. What better time
than Pride (which begins right between Mother's
Day and Father's Day) to be proud of our domestic
and parental accomplishments as well as our
What better time than the end of the school
year, too, to remind us to be proud of our children,
not just for their academic accomplishments,
but also for navigating the sometimes tricky
social waterways of school, friendships, and
extracurricular activities? I am proud of my son
all the time, but find that June, with its sense of
another year completed, is a good time to reflect
on that pride.
I hope my pride conveys simply that I am happy
for him whenever he perseveres or feels, himself,
a sense of accomplishment. Pride can, however,
segue into pushiness, with parents driving their
kids to excel---in school, in sports, in music or
other arts---in a stressful, unhealthy way.
As LGBT parents, we also have to curb our
pride before it makes us pressure our kids to be
perfect models of healthy, well-adjusted children
who don't reflect badly upon LGBT parents.
That's unrealistic and unnecessary.
Looking to the wider world, will our Pride
go before a fall when the Supreme Court rules
on marriage equality this month? No. I am
cautiously optimistic that the court will do the
right thing. Even if they don't, I think the trend
of public opinion is such that it is only a matter
of time before we have marriage equality one way
(judicial ruling) or another (legislative action).
And if they do rule in favor of equality, I am
hopeful that enough LGBT advocates realize
that marriage is not everything, that we still
have goals yet to be gained like equal parental
recognition, employment nondiscrimination,
and transgender equality. We can be proud of our
progress and still know there is more to do.
Now that I've written that paragraph, I hesitate,
suddenly not all that confident of the outcome.
The court could decide that same-sex couples
in any part of the U.S. can marry; it could take
an intermediate position that says states must
at a minimum recognize marriages of same-sex
couples performed elsewhere; or it could say we
have no guaranteed rights to either.
Which brings us to pride in our country. Will
I still be proud to be American if our Supreme
Court rules against equality? Yes. I won't be proud
of the justices who chose to do so, but I will still be
proud to be part of a nation that has people in it
like James Obergefell, the lead plaintiff, fighting to
be on the death certificate of his spouse, who died
from Lou Gehrig's disease (ALS).
I will be proud of plaintiffs April DeBoer and
Jayne Rowse, who first went to court not to marry,
but to secure adoption rights to their children. I
will be proud of the many other plaintiff couples,
mostly parents, who have dealt not only with the
hassle of a court case, but the inevitable media
intrusion upon their lives that such a high-profile
case brings with it.
I will also be proud that our country has
progressed to the point of debating a right like
marriage, rather than the legality of simply being
LGBT. I will be proud that our State Department
has been working to expand basic human rights
in countries where it is still a crime to exist as an
I will be proud of all the progress we have made
here at home, sometimes one family at a time,
to secure our bonds and provide our children
with protection and stability. I will be proud of
each and every LGBT person, their children, and
allies who have spoken out during their everyday
lives, at soccer games and grocery shopping, to
be visible or correct a misconception about LGBT
I will remain proud of my son, growing up to be
a responsible citizen of this country and learning
that while change may be slow, it can and does
happen by the effort of the people.
Democracy, like pride, has its good sides and its
weaker moments. Maybe I'm just fundamentally
an optimist, though, because I do believe in the
end, we're better with them than without. That
moral arc of the universe keeps on bending---and
this month, it looks like a rainbow. Happy Pride to
you and your families!
Dana Rudolph is the founder and publisher of Mombian (mombian.com),
a GLAAD Media Award-winning blog and resource directory for LGBTQ parents.
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