Engaging with the fundies at Pride?

Last year’s Baltimore Pride was my first Pride event.  As I’ve mentioned before, it was *awesome.* Also as I’ve mentioned before, I was, shall we say, emotionally unprepared for the fundamentalist jerk-weasels with the bullhorns, and may have overreacted a small bit to their presence. (That is, I got into a shouting match about how God is love and they’re the ones who need to go read their Bibles.)  This was less than helpful, both because it stressed me right the hell out and because it kept them lingering at our part of the parade, rather than moving on to bother someone else.

It occurred to me afterwards that an absolutely wonderful thing allies could do to show their support would be to divert and distract these folks. Not by yelling at them or making a big scene, but just by quietly asking them some questions. Basically play the role of someone who’s interested in what they have to say, and see if you can get them to engage with you, one on one, quietly.  Because every minute they spend looking up some passage in Leviticus for you and answering your oh-so-sincere questions is a minute they’re not yelling hellfire and damnation at someone who’s hurt by it.

The giant downside of course, is that you’ve taught them that yelling hate gets them the kind of attention they want. And they will, of course, spin the story such that you were a person suffering from same-sex attraction, conned by the liberal media, who they rescued from the flames of hell. But, then, lying liars who lie will claim that they used to be gay and God fixed them, or whatever they need to claim to try to convince people that their hate is a holy cause. So, I’d be wary of saying things that agree with them or sound like you’re convinced by their cherry-picked passages.

This is just an idea I’m tossing around in my head.  It seems like it might be worth attempting, to make Pride events a little safer for people who’ve come out of (or are still in) oppressive religious environments and just need one day to be who they are. I’m not sure if giving the haters even that much validation is a good thing, though.


5 thoughts on “Engaging with the fundies at Pride?

  1. Are there any churches that are affirming/supportive of LGBTQ* people? We have a lot of churches that march in our local PRIDE parade, and I think it’s a very positive thing for LGBTQ* Christians.

    • KellyK says:

      Yeah, we have several churches that march in ours too. As a bi Christian, that makes me extremely happy.

  2. […] did like that other people were suggesting the same thing I mentioned here, the idea that Christian allies can help by distracting the haters quietly and politely and getting […]

  3. Kell Brigan says:

    The intolerance shown to people who are gay critical by this tiny movement is one of the main reasons it will never go mainstream. Fatness has nothing to do with homosexuality, or any of the other favorite issues of the ultra left wing. Fat people are the majority of people, yet this “movement” remains fringe and unknown; left-wing intolerance and presumption are the main reasons why.

    • KellyK says:

      I’m not really interested in being “tolerant” toward people who show up at Pride parades to scream hate, people who pass laws to make sure LGBTQ people have fewer rights than straight people, or people who drive LGBTQ kids to suicide because they aren’t willing to accept them. Nor am I interested in throwing other minorities under the bus to advance fat rights. If you want to start a right-wing fat acceptance movement that’s only for cis-het white fat people, you have fun with that. I’m fat, and bi, and Christian, and a number of other things. I can’t (and won’t) cut off pieces of my identity to be more acceptable to the right wing.

      Fatness and homosexuality aren’t directly connected, but the ways in which they’re oppressed have a boatload of similarities. The “I’m just worried about your health” argument gets applied both to fat and to the supposed health risks of being gay. The “it’s a choice” argument gets trotted out against both groups. So, basically, your concerns have been noted and moved to the circular file. Have a nice day!

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