Chinese, Gay, and Proud!

As LGBT people in the U.S., and specifically in my home of Virginia, push forward for social change and equal rights, it is sometimes instructive to learn what people in other places are doing. Shanghai Pride 2009

Monday’s New York Times carried a story, “Gay Festival in China Pushes Official Boundaries.” You can read the entire story by going to this link, http://www.nytimes.com/2009/06/15/world/asia/15shanghai.html?_r=1

Two things in the article caught my eye. First, the authorities shut some activities down but allowed others. There is not a clear line of what the government will tolerate and what it will not. This keeps the LGBT community off-balance.

Second, most of the celebrants were “self-assured, unapologetically gay and mostly under 30.” This serves to keep the government off-balance.

There is little doubt who will win in the long run. But, given the power of tradition in Chinese culture, it may be a very long run before LGBT life is completely open and accepted.

Still, it is just amazing to watch as the world changes. What a difference 40 years (post-Stonewall) makes!