On Sep. 5-7, San Marcos will host its first Pride. Pride is an important event for the LGBTQIA community and its supporters to gather in celebration of being who you are without discrimination.
Having an event like this is huge for San Marcos. Even though San Marcos is near some of the more progressive areas of Texas, the fact remains that it is still Texas, a Republican state. Pride is an important event for the LGBTQIA community and has quickly become one of, if not the, most well-known celebrations within it.
There are Pride parades and events held all over the nation and world. Earlier this year, Uganda held its third annual gay pride event. The people of Uganda live in conditions where the anti-gay sentiment is so strong that there are laws against homosexuality. If those people can come together and host a Pride parade under those circumstances, San Marcos can definitely host a successful Pride weekend as well.
College is the time to find one’s true self and be whatever that is. Events like Pride are beneficial to the community because it affords those who are lost, confused or struggling with their identities an opportunity to interact with those that may be further down the road to self-discovery. Meeting people who have come from where you are and are doing just fine is an extremely comforting and uplifting experience.
Pride is not only an event for those that identify somewhere under the LGBTQIA umbrella; Ally participation is encouraged and welcomed. However, it is important for Allies to strike the balance between showing support and hijacking the movement for themselves. For those worried about their image in regards to going to events like these (an unfortunate but necessary point to make), it is important to remember that going to things like Pride events indicates your support, not your sexuality.
The success of an event like Pride is not measured solely on the crowd turnout. If the crowd is composed mostly of people who are simply there to witness rainbow-clad characters parade around, it is less of a success than it would be if it was a smaller crowd of people that actually cared about showing support and celebrating of diversity and equality. If any students, faculty, staff or campus organizations wish to sign up to walk or have a float in the parade, they can do so through the SMTX Pride Facebook page.
The festivities kick off on Friday night with Rainbow Night, hosted at Fullmoon Saloon. The next morning, the parade starts at 9 a.m. at 801 W. MLK and is projected to end around 10 a.m. at 126 N LBJ. SMTX Pride will also be hosting several booths on the courthouse grounds immediately following the parade. At 11 a.m. Sunday, the San Marcos Unitarian Universalist Fellowship will host a service at the Rio Vista Pavilion, after which there will be same-sex marriage ceremonies performed starting at 1 p.m. The weekend will wrap up with a drag show and dance at The Marc on the Square.
Members of the editorial board will be in attendance at various events this weekend and encourage everyone to go to the festivities, but more importantly, we encourage everyone to be an active supporter rather than simply an observer.