My Experience At Birmingham Pride

Birmingham Pride was surprisingly good. Honestly, I thought it would be worse due to the protests that are occurring, still, in Birmingham about LGBTQIA Studies.

But, I was pleasantly surprised. We had Christian and Muslim groups in the parade, walking with us. Of course, there were the usual protesters in the crowds — holding signs stating we’re going to hell. Personally, I’m okay with that. I’d prefer to live in a warm place with my fellow queers.

Remarkably, it wasn’t the protesters that ruined it for me. And to be honest, it wasn’t that it was ruined but it certainly put a damper on things…

While we were on the float, we got to interact with some of the crowd — it was awesome! But then the Cis, Straight girls decided to come out of the woodwork. We were playing music, some that can be danced to. But the straight girls, decided to do some… Lude dancing. Which I didn’t like considering it was also in front of children in the crowd — and we’d been asked by Birmingham Pride to not do anything sexual as they wanted it to be a family friendly event. But to make it worse, they decided to direct their dancing — to the gay men on the float.

Ah, yes — Gay Men love watching Girls Twerk…?

One of the girls shouted, “C’mon — I’ll make you straight!”

Which I don’t think anyone else on the float heard over the music. Unfortunately for me, I was too close not to hear it. So, as you can imagine — that felt shit.

Dear Straight Girls at Pride,
Twerking at Gay Men won’t “turn them” Straight. They’ve never been Straight, they’re never going to be Straight.
Kind regards,
An angry Queer.

But the entire day wasn’t ruined if anything a few things happened that made me happy!
One of the things that happened was that an Enby in the crowd signed I Love You towards me while wearing my Enby hat. I signed back Thank You because not only did I not know what else to say, but I’m also still learning BSL and didn’t want to risk making a tit of in true Yorkshire form.

They started crying and laughing, they got quite giddy and their friends shouted Thank You at us, and that honestly just made my day.

There are several things that people don’t take into account at Pride — not everyone can hear your message, not everyone can see your message — so you need to represent your message visibly and loudly. Be proud and make sure you’re accessible. Representation can make a whole world of difference to those who usually feel like they’re stuck in the dark.

~Teddy