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Dueling Prides: A Dividing Factor in the LGBTQ Community?

As the Pride month approaches, we have multiple cities hosting pride events to celebrate the diversity of the LGBTQ community. However, Los Angeles has been embroiled in a controversy for the last three years as it opted to shift its LA Pride event from its longtime West Hollywood locale to Hollywood. The move was an attempt to increase diversity and accessibility, but it's now led to businesses in West Hollywood creating their own pride event within weeks of each other, leading to a rivalry that raises questions about the divides within the community.

The question is, why has this rivalry emerged? The answer may lie in the demographic differences between Hollywood and West Hollywood. West Hollywood has for long been a gay bastion of white male businesses and homeowners. With this pride event, they seem to be catering to their community's specific needs, such as showcasing primarily queer, gay men and their businesses. However, with the LA Pride event, there's a shift towards showcasing a more diverse range of people from the queer community. From this perspective, it seems that different communities are trying to cater to different needs.

The dueling prides in LA raise questions about the strength of the LGBTQ community. Is it possible that these divisions will undermine what the community has fought so hard to establish? A divided community may not only undermine our strength but also the sense of collective belonging that we have striven to achieve. It's essential to remember that the LGBTQ community was founded on the shared identity of people who had previously been marginalized. We may have diverse needs or priorities, but we must work towards unity.

While the dueling prides have highlighted differences within the community, one thing that they both share is national talent. In 2021, LA Pride will celebrate its event by hosting Mariah Carey and Megan Thee Stallion. On the other hand, the City of West Hollywood's annual event will celebrate Pride month with its own unique set of activities, beginning with a free show featuring Idina Menzel, Jessie Ware, Shangela, and Tinashe. These events only build on the cultural and social experiences that the LGBTQ community has to offer.

The silver lining is that the dueling prides are a reflection of the community's increasing desire for inclusivity. We must not forget that every community must cater to its specific needs. However, we must also remember that all members of the queer community share a commonality, and we must work together to honor that. Further, multiple cities host pride events. In Los Angeles alone, aside from the competing prides, Santa Monica will also be hosting a pride event, and the City will also celebrate the Los Angeles Black Gay Pride during the week of the Fourth of July.

In conclusion, while the duelling prides in Los Angeles appear to be a sign of division, they signify something more critical - the community's need for inclusivity. The events are a chance for people to come together to celebrate their differences, their similarities, and their love for each other. It's essential that every segment of the community listens to each other's needs and works towards unity. Let's be inclusive, let's be supportive, and let's be proud.

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