Chicago Rally

The gay rights movement has been, all things considered, a pretty tame affair.  Unlike other ‘movements,’ over the last 20-30 years, the advocates for gay equality have used few mass demonstration to make appeals.  There are political reasons for that.

That has changed since election day.

On Saturday, over 80 cities throughout the country sponsored mass rallies to protest the passage of Proposition 8 and other anti-gay measures.  The joint rally idea was an internet-driven, decentralized outburst that saw more people publically advocating on behalf of gay rights than at any other single time in the country’s history.

Chicago was one of those 80 cities.   Kyle and I were able to participate for a while in the middle of the event.  We joined Kasey, Kevin, and over 2,000 others to march throughout Chicago’s downtown, shutting down parts of Michigan Ave and State St.  Kasey and Kevin made the trip from Champaign, and were involved in the event both earlier and later than us.   Quite impressive.

I will post additional thoughts on the event when I get a bit more time this week, but overall it was eye-opening and thought-provoking.  

One story:  As Kyle and I were waiting to join the marching adovcates, a woman approached us and asked what was going on.  She was about a mid-40s black woman who seemed to be on her way back from a quick shopping trip.  When we told her what it was all about her response came quick, “Whatever, as long as they don’t touch children.”

Some photos of the Chicago event…


Oh, and Kasey,Kevin, Kyle, and I were on the B roll footage in the ABC News coverage of the event.  See if you can catch us walking stoically in the first few seconds of the clip.  

I can’t figure out how to embed it properly, but you can see it if you go to the link below, and click the “Most Popular” tab.  It is currently the most popular video on the abc7 news site.

2 thoughts on “Chicago Rally

  1. I find the comment that woman made to you interesting because my Mom brought that up to me too when we were discussing your earlier post. She said that there is this inherent fear among many people that anyone who is gay is also a pedophile, but people aren’t likely to admit that they think that. I was quite honestly shocked. I guess my abode on Lancaster Dr over here is buried under a rock because I never realized this was an issue or a sentiment. I don’t even know where the assumption originated from (my Mom suggested the Catholic priest scandals, but that doesn’t make complete sense to me)…

    Any enlightenment to offer on this ludicrous situation?

    Also, thanks for the pics and video post. I wanted to attend, but I had my cousin’s wedding.

  2. Interesante…and I don’t think your Landcaster Dr. dwelling is buried under anything (except maybe Christmas cookies).

    Re: the pedophilia thing. I think it has deep roots. My guess is that many folks from the last two generations first only heard of homosexuality from pedophilia scandals. There was no Will and Grace or Ellen. There was no internet. Very few people were open about their sexuality. And the topic was taboo to discuss in almost any circumstance.

    But it was discussed on the news: when some child was abused by an adult of the same sex.

    Without any other alternative presented to them, millions of individuals made their assumptions about gays based on that very limited information. And those stereotypes take years, decades, and generations to dissolve.

    That’s just one thought. Anyone have others?

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