If you visit Disney World in Orlando, Florida, you would expect to see Mickey Mouse, Cinderella, and Daffy Duck. If you visit Disney World the first week of June (May 31 to June 6) this year, you will see something else: A lot of people showing their gay pride.
Gay pride events are public events where gays (men who like men romantically) and lesbians (women who like women romantically) can show their support for those in the gay and lesbian community. Most often, we see gay-pride parades, which is when people gather and march or walk through the streets together in celebration, often with music and costumes.
The “Gay Days” at Disney World is not an official Disney World event, but Disney World welcomes this one week each year when gays and lesbians gather and bring their families. You’ll know who these participants are because they wear red shirts so others will know who they are. Last year, about 150,000 people attended this six-day event, which included special pool parties, a film festival, after-hour (after closing time) visits to certain parts of Disney World, special gatherings and events for kids, and more.
The “Gay Days” started in 1991 as just one “Gay Day” with 3,000 gays and lesbians in Florida gathering for the purpose of becoming more visible (easy to see; easy to identify). For gays and lesbians who had a difficult time in their childhood or adolescence (teenage years; between 13-19 years old), gathering at Disney World is a positive experience and, they say, a way to recapture (experience again) those early years with fun and joy, instead of taunts (remarks made in anger and to make other people react negatively) and being laughed at. By 1995, about 10,000 traveled to Disney for the day.
Today, the Gay Days span (last) six days at Disney World and rival (is about the same as) in size the famous gay pride parades in New York City and San Francisco. Several religious groups of Jews and Christians have complained to Disney about Gay Days, asking them to move the event to after-hours only. But the Gay Days are not officially-sanction (officially approved and supported) by the company. Gays and lesbians simply show up (arrive) wearing red shirts and enjoy the park along with other visitors.
Are there gay pride events where you live?
Photo Credit: “Cinderella Castle at Magic Kingdom – Gay Day – 2007” from Wikipedia
Yes, of course, here in Madrid there is a big parade in the center of the capital celebrating “El Dia del Orgullo Gay” but around this day there are
two or three days more of great celebrations that take place in a district “Chueca” that is significant because there are lot of bars, restaurants, clubs
and also apartments where live a great community of gay and lesbian persons.
It seems to me that the Disney Celebration is more quiet and familiar that the one which is celebrating in Madrid but having in mind what you
said Lucy about the difficult times these persons have lived before fighting against a society that does not approve them or even reject them
for long, now it is natural to make such a big fuss like the one that is made here in Madrid.
Even now some gay men or lesbians need to live silently if they do not want to fight against social reject some places of this country and
this feeling of reject are reminders of a repressive long history of incomprehension and persecution along decades.
I hope that in future we could see different sexual preferences as something absolutely natural that has nothing to do with the qualities
a person may have.
Thank you Lucy, a nice interesting subject.
Nowadays you can see many gay couples almost everywhere, in Shopping Malls, Parks, bus, etc. Some of them don’t care about what others think about them.
Recently, there was an attack to a homosexual on an very well known avenue, and this made a lot of noisy. The press showed almost two weeks what happened.
A man, who works for the government, said to a journalist last week “Now we have our rights”, he said that, because now they have the same rights that a conventional couple.
I have heard similar case with above material. In my country, over 50 women who works at night, especially for sex-industry marched and protested against local government policy on road.
The policy has intention to get rid of building used for sex-industry. They, however, insisted that the local-G should guarantee their right to live on. They have no option or choice to live on with
working for sex-industry.
I think the local-G need moderation to solve this problem. Urgent desion make it harder and louder to find answer for the social issue.
In Brazil, gays are not well seen because the Catholic Church and prejudice from population. The catholic tradition in Brazil comes from the time when Brazil was a colony of Portugal. It‘s been nothing more than 500 years since Portuguese showed up in Brazil the first time and that time catholic religion was the major religion in Portugal. So today gays are not accepted gladly by Brazilian. I think this prejudice would be banned but it is a matter of culture and culture is the thing that can’t be killed easily, unfortunately.
Aecio from beautiful green and yellow Brazil.
RIGHT TO BE: Here in Spain, the Gay Pride parades started nearly at the same time than in the rest of Europe and the United States and almost with same features as everywhere. It is quite surprising the red color shirts they show up in the U.S. because that at this side of the pond they identify much more with pink color rather than red. One could say that the fully acceptance of the “pink sexuality”, as it is sometimes called, is a global concern or a democratic conquest that equals to other well known issues in the past, like women´s right to vote, racial segregation and so forth. A more controversial and not so visible issue is the so called “third” sex. Some people include in to gays and lesbians within it but others tend to not doing it. They argue that they are neither heterosexuals nor homosexuals but a third and independent sexual gender. Nevertheless things can always complicate themselves a little more and some featured anthropologist support the existance of a “fourth” gender and even a “fifth” sexual gender. In my opinion the good democratic conquest on this issue should be total respect to difference and total sexual trends integration into full social normalization and acceptance. The Gay Pride parades are “visible” signals of no consecution, that this democratic goal has not been reached. As far as puritans and other several same haired of, just remind them that “Who be free of sin, who throw the first stone.”
Here in Russia gays prides is denied. No one official gay pride was happend in Russia. Some uncoordinated attempts were dispersed by police (and opponents).
I should say that here in Russia overwhelming majority is against gays and their prides as well. I heard about possibility of gay pride in Moscow in closest future but many people express their disagreement (usually in very rude shape) and I ashamed for them.
In my opinion, gay and lesbians parades has to be banned everywhere (and espessialy in such places as Disney World where there are a lot of children) because it isn’t normal when these persons demonstrate their feelings and sex orientation in public. Why does the another part of community have to allow them to demonstrate their thoughts? That’s why, I am very happy about the fact that such parades are out of the approval of authorities in Russia.
Thanks for this topic!
Eugene from Russia
There is such events here,in Toronto. The event holds everyday in mid summer.
It is a two day event
We call it Gay parade as well
It is a bit boring though
Every year the do the same routin
Honest, i went to watch the parade just twice,and it was 7 hours of my life I can’t get back
Everything is the same ,nothing special
I can think of lot of better things I can do with my tine
Thank you very much, Lucy, for this ‘difficult’ topic.
I hope to be able to cope with any topic that our teachers give us, but this is really a difficult topic. Nevertheless, it is a very good training for us to try to deal with any topic that exists in our society.
‘Gay Pride’ is very controversial because it has been condemned by some religious organisations, and many institutions (eg, the US military) have tried to live with it secretly for many years.
I do not have much knowledge about this topic and so I searched the internet about history of ‘gay’ in China. There are some Chinese publications about this topic, but they are far too complicated for my brain.
In any case, since it is something that is normal for some people in our society, we have to accept it. As we all know, this is their ‘human rights’.
My only concern is, some people might manipulate this ‘natural’ nature of some human beings and try to make money out of it – do you see Disney World is making a lot of money on those few ‘Gay Days’?
Hi! Only after 2005 we have a kind of Gay parade (it is not translated and the word “pride”) and only in our capital.
Much, much suffering…
I am sorry I forgot to mention a website I used quite regularly for checking English words.
To find it, just Google “the free dictionary”.
It might not be perfect, but it might be worth trying to use to see if you like using it.
Thanks Dear Lucy for sharing it.
although I try my best to have respect for” gays and lesbians” but really I can’t accept their attitude so try not to think about them and hope they can forgive me for that. hopefully I never have one of them in my close family, as I am not sure how well I can handle it.
I’m glad that there aren’t any Gay pride events in my country. Actually In my law and religion it’s forbidden to be homosexual although u can find some.
Here people don’t accept them and try to avoid these so-called Gay people so these kind of people try to hide their personality.
It’s a shame to be homosexual I think. If it was a right way, God would allow everyone to be gay or lesbian.
Thank u lucy for giving good information and practical words. You are a great teacher Lucy,
I am very surprised that the US has such events, i dont like this idea of dedicating these events for much less the homosexual people, thank god wo dont have these thing back in my country and in my culture as well. i am ashamed to even talk about these people, no offense. but i think Disney world or whatever should be a little bit higher and think of more imprtant events and people rather than wasting there time.
however, that is just my opinion.
Hi for everybody.
Here in Brasil, there is a law at National congress, that may be approved at soon. Well, that law will determine that the Schools teach about of Homosexuality and lesbianism and the kind loving relationship among these couples. I belive that this is not right, becouse the childrens could be easily induced for an unconscius homosesual experince. In Holy Bible is written: In the beginning God created the man and the Woman; He not say: Man, Woman and homossexual. In my opnion this pratice is a great sin and the people who pratice it are suffering of the an espiritual problem. But the question is: school is not place for to teach that kind of the Topic.
God help our kids.
I’m glad that I’m not the only person here who thinks that this type of relationship is wrong. The tolerance is in these days. But it’s simple to be tolerant when it not relates to you. But I’m sure that nobody would like their child to be a homosexual.
I had been avoiding this discussion just to not hurt anyone’s feeling, but let’s make our hands a bit dirty. There’s something always intrigued me about homosexual. It’s merely wether one’s born or become homosexual????
If we born homosexual, then there’s no debate about. They must or will have all human right like others. It’s exactely like to be born black, hispanic, white or asian.
If we become homosexual, then there’s no debate also. Then homosexualty must be forbidden around the word and they (homosexual) must behave like a regular human being or send to jail if they show their promiscuity or even show their sexual preferences in public. It’s exactly like stealing, murdering or consumming drugs. These lastest are forbidden just because they have negative influence on the society. It’s the same about homosexuality.
Regardless any religious trends, Imagine, just a second, a world where all human beings are homosexual? I hate to think about it!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks for the the free dictonnary. It’s a very good one with Merriam-Webster’s. Actually it’s Derdei and my future(and current) pseudo is Mamari.
Not yet at S.korea. but it’ll be happen near future:)
Lucy, I think you are really brave to post here such a polemic subject as it is homosexuality. Bravo Lucy you are really an incredible
good teacher and a fascinating person, I am sure about that.
Talking about the subject I could say that:
I would not like to have a children homosexual but not by my feelings about this matter, no, that is not the point. I should be
worried or concerned because life would be complicated for him or for her.
As a father all what could happen to my children should be my concern or my worries too, but my own opinion about the
subject it is not of importance if I could see my children happy, if I see them disgrace I would suffer their pains as a father
and I know it clearly that being homosexual for people t is a great handicap in lot of lands and countries now and ever, that´s
For too many years, even now, homosexuals are not good accepted in society or even in some places are absolute rejected or
out of law with severe punishments or even jail.
Honestly I do not agree with this kind of treatment, and I don´t care if I like or not homosexuality, that is not the point.
In fact I don´t like it, but I have not any rights to condemn it as long as these people live their life without disturbing the rules
and rights of other people.
Along my life I have known homosexuals persons who are excellent human beens, absolutely right people who have helped
me when we have been through hard times.
Some of them are among my close friends, and I don´t care about their sexual preferences or kind of intimate life, this have
not been ever my business and never it would be an impediment to have a goof friendship.
To me this is the important subject, not sexual choices or preferences as long as the person is a good person and a good
May be I have been a lucky man but my experience with these persons have been always very good.
Right people with honest behavior and with good disposition to help Cuca and me along our troubles in life.
So please, don´t be so cruel with people who have another way of living their life.
Sometimes is necessary to know them or close to the subject to have a better point of view.
Yes, I can´t imagine a man having sex with another man the same as a woman in the same turn but it is not my business if these
persons are good nice persons with me and they submit their compromises with the society they are living in.
There are another choices in sexual behavior that is odd and very unpleasant to me too and all of us know what I am talking about.
Interchange of couples, trios, round beds, having two or three man or woman simultaneously and so forth.
(That is only talking about what could be free among adults and without any punishment by the law)
Sorry friends, but I ask for a bit of more comprehension and tolerance about gay persons or lesbians despite we don´t like their
choices about so intimacy life.
All the best friends.
Lucy you are really smart and brave, good very good subject.
Thanks for the interesting topic!
Yes, we have Gay Parades in Norway too, as I live in the countryside I`ve never been at such events,
but I feel lucky to live in an openminded country!
Dear members; The main thing is to accept each other the way we are, isn`t it=)
Love to all from Øyvor in Norway
Yes, I agree with that, Emiliano. I think that if the person has incredible qualities it’s not important whether they are homosexual or not. But I think that Disney World is not the best place for such gatherings. The children shouldn’t see it.
Thanks to explain us cleary your point of view in good-natured way. However let me give you some remarks:
–> First, the main point of “defense” is “there’re very good homosexual persons” and “You don’t care about their intimicy”. I think no one up there says that homosexual are bad persons or something like that. We all know that Homosexual are as regular persons ans then there’re both kind and bad person. The social behavior doesn’t depend in sexual preferences at all. We must admit also that some kind attitudes don’t imply a good attitude in the whole society or in front of law. The example of Alcapone in EC#293 is a good one, remember??
I think also that anyone around the world knows at least one freind or relative who is homosexual. It’s not a matter of liking or disliking someone personnaly, but it’s about the impact of this phenomena in the society.
You said also in ypur comment that “I would not like to have a children homosexual”. Is that it?? Then you should, just by kindness, wish the same thing to anyone else (friends, relatives and so forth). Don’t you think???
—> Second, you said also somewhere in your comment “..but I have not any rights to condemn it as long as these people live their life without disturbing the rules
and rights of other people…”. All the problem is right here. They have been disturbing other regular people. Look at this topic’s title or the picture up there at Magic please!!! If they (homosexual) do or say wathever they want inside their bedroom or house then terrific, there’s no problem.
—> You tolk about tolerance and comprehension. I think also these notions are kind of subjective. For example, why consuming, buying or selling drugs are forbidden???? Even if you do these things in your tiny room/appartment, you will have a police visit one day. Do you see the problem. However I’m not a drugs dealer, trust me 🙂
Even though it’s a kind of passionate topic, try to be less insulting. Try to defend your opinion in a good-natured way like Emiliano does.
It’s no a matter of contry here. I swear that there’re plenty of anti-gay in Norway (catholic church members for example) like everywhere and pro-gay also. So do in USA.
By the way, notice that being from what you called “openminded contry” don’t make you an openminded guy. Don’t you think???
And let’s other people qualifie you “openminded”.
That’s why we look at the U.S. as a role model for civil rights and respect for all religions and minorities.
That’s what we also do here in Europe. You know, here we have Democracy. Do you know what that is in Russia and Iran?
Hi , again
Let me make some corrections in my comments:
–> First, the main point of YOUR “defense”………. INSTEAD OF –> First, the main point of “defense”……
—> You TALKED about tolerance and…… ISTEAD OF —> You tolk about tolerance and…….
It was a pleasure to discuss on this prickly topic.
I could understand your arguments perfectly well Mamari despite I am not completely agree with them.
May be I am not so objective about this subject as I should be.
All my feelings about the theme are above and what is clear for me always is that persons are more
important to me that objective concepts.
When I was a child or even young these homosexual people were prosecuted by law and to me that was not fair.
Children who have another different kind of sexual feelings suffered all kind of humiliating acts from every body
also their families were against them and at the end all this was unhealthy to their personalities as persons.
Lot of male boys and girls opted to find refuge inside convents or another religion institutions where they
had not to justify they remained as singles.
The problem afterward was that inside these places happened all kind of abuses that we all know.
So what is better? To have these people out of law and society? Hidden inside convents, army or jails?
No, I don´t think so.
We could like them or not, that is not the question but I think it is necessary and just to consider homosexuals as
equals respect the law and society.
By the way, I don´t like “the proud parade” and never I have been searching this kind of event.
In fact I could not understand what is the meaning of being proud being and homosexual just the same of being
proud of being heterosexual, a man or a woman.
Normality is what I ask for, but now this kind of movement that has been exceeded.
Here our Socialist Government has something to do with so many excesses as an incredible shocking big parade every
big city of Spain, also given the same condition like “spouses” to persons of the same sex who decided to join their life
by the law.
These kind of acts from our Government “looking for votes” had irritated wide segments of our Spanish society and
again lot of people are very irritate.
Yes, we can write some books talking about the subject and I could understand perfectly well to other friends who are
written here about their feelings, religion, law or sensations.
I agree also with Valerie that is not so good to the children to see some kind of acts which may influenced their perception
of the reality, the “proud parade of Madrid” is a good example or even some other extrapolated acts that could be even
extravagant to the majority of other homosexuals fellows who dislike exhibitions.
Finally I think it is also necessary to teach the children what they need to know about sexual themes and also bring them our
help and comprehension in the case they feel just the contrary we and society understand is the logical attraction to the
opposite gender. Adding pain or uncomprehending the children it is not the right way of giving love and education.
My three daughters are young women already so I have not these kind of subjects in my life.
It is only a good exercise to express feelings and opinions about a polemic subject without trying to make rules, law
or even objective, by the contrary I use to be always very passionate person, that´s my fault.
All the best friends and thank you so much Lucy.
a respectful discussion. This is not always given for this theme.
Let me ask, how do you like … for example carnival in rio de janeiro.
I think homosexuelity is a part of nature. We see heterosexuality and homosexuality in all nations … in different times … . We could see it in nature by animals.
Heterosexuality is the majority, but there is always a minority.
For some religions it is ok, for other religions it is not ok. There are many different religions in the world.
Many different societies. Many different people. We all life in one world.
What makes a person? Is it alone his or her sexuality?
I think no. Our sexuality is only a small part of us. One little aspect of every person.
I life in a very fine family: parents, parents-in-law, brothers, sisters-in-law, nices and nephews, cousins … my partner and I have built a house and have got three children … in the morning we go to our jobs … we help our parents … we celebrate with our friends … and we are a same-sex couple
It is a very great feeling to go to a place like Disney World at the Gay Days with your partner and your children in red shirts and you know: this day nobody will bother you or your children with his or her special opinion. There are normal people with their families around you, which respect this little point of my life … my love. You musn´t be careful for this one day. One day you are “the majority”. It feels great.
I think heterosexual people couldn´t feel this difference. Perhaps someone like Mrs Rosa Parks?
Yes, perhaps there are some parallels to black people in USA or Europe 50 years ago.
I whish all of you a healthy life. Full of love, with your families and friends, in a peaceful world.
Let me wish you all the best for you and your whole family and also I would like to add that your comment is a good
example of what we were talking about.
As you ask for a question I would like to reply it.
I don´t have an opinion about carnivals, or parades as I don´t ever use to go.
May be i am not a person who enjoys being surrounded by a huge multitude so I prefer to go some other quiet
evens like a concert or a theater show.
Consequently to my character I don´t like to go these kind of shows and my opinion is of no value about the
matter we were talking about.
Kim I hope you´ll be here more frequently as you are really very welcome.
thank you very much for your welcome!
I don´t like parades or carnivals too.
I like nature, sports, music and especially my family.
And I like learning, for example learning english. This is a very excellent web page to do this.
Thank you very much Lucy Tse, Jeff McQuillan, Warren Ediger and all the people from everywhere in the world who write in this blog.
It is very interessting to read different views of a topic from Brasil, Spain, Iran, China, Russia, Hongkong, Norway … …
Hi Kim, I was hoping that someone like you would tell us your opinion about the Gay Days in Disney World.
Up to and until your post, we only had messages from non-gay people, and it did not help providing a balanced view for a discussion.
I used to live in England which is considered a very developed Western country but it still has not legalized same sex marriage.
In 2004 the Civil Partnership Act was passed and came into effect in December 2005. It created civil partnerships, which gave same-sex couples who entered into them the same rights and responsibilities of marriage.
There are some very famous and popular people who are openly-gay in England – Elton John the musician/singer-songwriter/record producer is one of them.
He and his Canadian boyfriend David Furnish, a former advertising executive and now filmmaker entered a civil partnership on 21 December 2005 – the very first day that registrations for civil partnership were accepted in England and Wales.
May I quote Emiliano’s saying above: ‘I would not like to have a children homosexual but not by my feelings about this matter, no, that is not the point. I should be worried or concerned because life would be complicated for him or for her’.
Emiliano’s message is so precise, gay couples have to live a more complicated life. The world has only begun to wake up to cry for the world to recognize homosexuality is genuine and cater for it in our society.
If we read the wikipedia’s English page about ‘Same-sex marriage’, we will find that Homosexuality is legal in some countries, although not every one of those countries perform Same-sex marriage; whereas Homosexuality is illegal in some countries, some countries even impose ‘Death penalty’ as a punishment.
I would not like to see anyone being discriminated against, and I hate to see anyone being hurt or punished due to the reason that they are ‘different’ in their sexuality. Countries in the whole world are gradually changing their law to cope with this new identity, and no one can stop or reverse this changing process.
Thank you, Kim, and all the best.
I was and it will be a pleasure to discuss with you. I agree that all polician are all hypocrite.
I’m really affected by your comment. However don’t you guys think that Kim’s parallelism between homosexual’s rights and black’s civil rights in USA an exaggeration?? In fact this remark lead us to my first comment’s question, where I ask “Whether one’s born or become homosexual??”
Let’s just look foward together to solve another problems around the world.
Your right when you said that before Kim arrive, the debate were kind of biaised.
Thank also to remind us the great singer Elton John. I realy like this guy, particulary his song SACRIFICE.
By the way, in the world of homosexual, there also another person who I have enorm RESPECT. It’s the GREAT italian painter Leonardo Da Vinci. Apparently, even the genre of The Mona Lisa, his masterpiece, is unknown.
PS: I apoligize to everyone who was hurt by my comments.
Don´t you think that comparing homosexuality with “stealing, murdering or consumming drugs” is an exaggeration?
and I don´t think Øyvor was insulting anyone, he has been very nice, or at least he wasn´t sending people to jail just for kissing another person in public. ..want to send people to jail for kissing. what a world!!!
but I accept your apologies, thanks for that
I agree with you: generally I don´t like to think in a sexual relation between man and man o woman and woman, but it´s because I don´t like to think in the sexual relations of other people, men with women included. It would be a little weird, awkward, even disgusting, in most of the cases, don´t you think? ; )
sorry guys, but very sad with some comments, now I wish I were homosexual, really, and to be pride of me and my feelings, (thanks to Betty and others for changing the mood)
something to remember: intolerance is a hint of fear
Yes, Sara I do think the same like you. I don´t like to think about sexuality between other people or friends, of course that is not my
business and I don´t care about their sexuality, homo or heterosexual.
Two of my best friends for years are two woman that are living together and with them Cuca and me have been traveling through
Europe for a long time before, sharing an auto caravan for more than twenty days some occasions.
Never we mind or talk about their sexual life just the same like them about us.
We were friends traveling and living together, having a good time and it was marvelous.
If possible I would like to repeat it.
Paulo Lopes Ferreira Says, I’m sorry to tell you, but you’re mistaken. There were no law about some material teaching children about homosexuality here in Brazil, as you wrongly said. They’ve tried to introduce educative folders about respect minorities in general ( which in my point of view is positive, cause our Constitution do not allowed discrimination of any kind, even if you have concept prejudices bases on your religion. ). It was not a gay material exclusively. Unfortunately some ignorant congressists as usual has manipulated public opnion which has forced the
president forbid this material. Children could not learn how be gay, believe me, this not possible! But, in other hand, you can educate people about respect and treat equally other person who could be apparently diferent in first impression. Cause sexuality do not define a character of a person at all.
It’s just a small piece of a human personality witch could means nothing, unless you are interested in have sexual relations with this particular person.
“Imagine, just a second, a world where all human beings are homosexual?”
Mamari, you are so right, I had never thought on that before. Maybe we have to finish off gay people… Altough… what would happen if everybody in the world were females? or even worst! if there were only men!!! Off with their heads too!!
Is it possible that God or Mother nature (or whatever rules this world) makes people “to feel gay” as an answer to an overpopulated world? whatever the reason is, I respect it, I don´t understand why heterosexual people have to be concern or critical about it.
when I said: “even worst! if there were only men!” I was kidding, of course, I loooove men.. but a world full of them, well, I don´t know.. har-har, kidding again:
It would be as worse as a world full of chatterbox women like me 😉