Houston Mayoral Candidate Derrick Broze has released a statement affirming his commitment to the struggles of the LGBTQ community while also acknowledging the concerns of parents regarding the inappropriate attempts to bring sensitive conversations to young mind who are not mature enough to fully understand.
It’s June 2023 and that means its time for Pride Month in Houston. I wanted to share a few of my thoughts for anyone who may be curious about my positions. This will be my one and only statement on Pride Month. I share my thoughts because I believe others will resonate with my concerns. I do not share this to create anger or fuel hatred.
I moved to Montrose in Houston in 2009. For those outside of Houston, Montrose has historically been the area of town where Houston’s LGBTQ community lives and hangs, as well as the “alternative”, artistic crowd. This was also the location for the Houston Pride Parade for a number of years.
From 2009 to probably about 2016 I went to Pride every June to support and – I’ll be honest – to party. Everyone knows Pride is a time when all kinds of people come out to party in the streets, drink, be half naked, and be loud.
Even at that time Pride was always a display of excess in nudity, drugs, and alcohol. Maybe not every party or every part of the parade but for sure it was a party to many people.
Either way, I came because I loved biking to the parade, drinking in the streets with friends while supporting those who come from communities which have historically been marginalized or criminalized. I still do support those struggles and resistance.
Today my views have definitely evolved on Pride month and Pride parade.
I still 100% support freedom of expression, freedom to love who you want, freedom to express your love, and I don’t believe the government should be involved in these decisions. I also believe students should learn about Stonewall and the oppression the LGBTQ community has experienced elsewhere.
At the same time I totally understand the concern of parents and others regarding Pride Month being promoted within schools to the point of being propaganda. I also don’t believe teachers, schools, or doctors should be promoting the idea to the children or even discussing their gender or sexuality with them in anyway.
I also would not necessarily consider Pride Parade’s to be child appropriate places. It all depends on context, of course, but definitely my experiences at Pride were not child friendly.
I will always stand up for individual liberty of all people, regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, etc That does not mean I believe people’s personal and sexual preferences should be part of the conversation when children are involved.
Now, I also want to warn anyone following me against falling into a trap of being so concerned about the children that you bounce from once extreme to the other by denying the existence and rights of the LGBTQ community. I do not support efforts to ban Pride Month anymore than I support efforts to force this conversation into a child’s mind.
We do not need to exist in extremes. We can stand up for individual liberty and freedom of expression while allowing parents to have age appropriate conversations with children on sensitive topics.
In short, the answer is not hate and it’s not hiding the world from children. It’s also not to expose kids to situations and conversations which are not appropriate.
I hope this explains my view on this nuanced topic. I do my best not to feed into the static and the noise.
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