Why Straight Pride is a Reflection on the Political Climate in the U.S.


Straight Pride Flag, from superhappyfunamerica.com

In 1969, homosexual acts were outlawed in New York, so many members of the community would gather at the Stonewall Inn in Greenwich Village. It was a safe haven. However, on June 28, nine policemen entered the inn, arresting employees for selling alcohol without a license. This confrontation led to a series of similar events that eventually evolved into what is known as the Stonewall Riots. These riots live on presently as Pride Parades, now known as a gathering of unapologetically authentic individuals basking in their right to remain who they are. On the 50th anniversary of Stonewall on June 2019, the world became flooded with rainbows, celebrating the acceptance of all sexual orientations, gender identities, and diversity. Corporations changed their logos to rainbow equivalents in solidarity; a rainbow flag rippled in the wind alongside star-spangled red, white, and blue in the White House. 

Meanwhile, something sinister stirred on the sidelines. The organization, Super Happy Fun America (SHFA), made its way to Boston City Hall to “advocate on behalf of the straight community in order to build respect, inclusivity, equality, diversity, unity… access, participation, dialogue, visibility, tolerance, and alliances with people from all walks of life.” 

The organization “[encourages] everyone to embrace [their] community’s diverse history, culture, and identity regardless of sexual orientation.”

It may seem like a ridiculous parody, but it unfortunately resulted in being 100 percent genuine. On August 31st, a meager crowd of people clad in patriotic colors marched proudly down the streets of Boston for an event they called Straight Pride. In lieu of an array of colors and toe-tapping tunes, there were a plethora of American flags and patriotic hymns to fill the space. Moreover, signs displayed sayings such as “Straight Lives Matter!” and “Make America Great Again!” while guards in yellow vests lined the crowds, a dispassionate barrier between parade-goers and protesters. 

But what do people really know about Straight Pride? What do people think incentivized these “revolutionaries” into creating a celebration for people who have not been discriminated against for their sexuality?

Despite what’s written on the official Straight Pride website, the parade reeks of a political agenda that has nothing to do with pride. There’s some partisan motive behind the organization of the parade. Straight Pride, although ridiculous, could fly under the radar at a city hall; however, a Conservative parade could not. The entire event seems so over-the-top, it couldn’t be more than satire. If only.

In the 2018 elections, John Hugo, the president of SHFA, was sponsored by pro-life organizations, and his focused issues leaned right. He brazenly posted a quote claiming, “straight people are an oppressed majority. We will fight for the right of straights everywhere to express pride in themselves without fear of judgment and hate.” 

His ideology was reflected through the “All Lives Matter” signs littering the Straight Pride parade and the “Trump 2020” float traveling alongside the parade-goers, furthering the idea that the parade was less about pride and more about pushing forth partisan politics. 

Ultimately, Straight Pride could only be described as a temper tantrum—a swing-and-miss byproduct of unchecked “Us vs Them” rhetoric. It plays directly into identity politics, honing in on trivial details instead of stepping back and looking at the bigger picture. In many ways, Straight Pride was a culmination of everything wrong in the political climate in the U.S. today. It aims to counteract popular leftist ideals with seemingly no objective. “Straight Pride” in response to LGBT+ Pride, “All Lives Matter” in response to “Black Lives Matter,” “Pro-Life” in response to “Pro-Choice.” Instead of existing as its own independent movement, Straight Pride is a collection of refutations parading as a celebration of diversity, which is made apparent by lack of a definitive reason for the creation of the parade. It waters down previously existing leftist principles and repurposing them to suit their own agenda. It was a radical, frivolous affair, and unfortunately seems to only be the first of many—on either side of the party politics.