Dean Clough

May 26, 2022

Portico Darwin: A Parade in Wokistan . . .


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I am really at a loss.  I do
not just want to move on from Uvalde.  But I have offered my proposal for rational gun control before.  You can read it here.  But please:  do not assume me moving to a different topic as any sign this issue is in my - or our country's - rear-view mirror.  The fever obsession with the Second Amendment and the rights it supposedly grants must be addressed.   We can't go on like this - but you know we will.

- - -

A parade in Wokistan . . . or, how Democrats lose elections despite having their policies favored by a majority of Americans.

This may or may not have hit your radar screen, but there's a controversy brewing at this year's Pride Parade here in SF.  This used to be called the Gay Pride Parade, but "gay" was dropped a few years back to be somehow more inclusive of the entire LGBT community.  This will be the 52th anniversary of its start.

(I say "somehow", because any straight or LGBT person was already more than welcome to join in the parade.)

Some context.  This parade is one of our city's largest events and parties, with typically thousands of marchers and hundreds of thousands of attendees and the merely curious.  It began as a protest parade, with LGBT marchers demanding equal rights, and an end to being harassed by the SF Police Department.  That was in 1970.

Fast forward to the last couple of decades, and the parade is nothing if not a completely unabashed celebration of being a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or trans person.  There are the famous "Dykes on Bikes" (their term), the topless, motorcycle-straddling lesbian ladies that have led the parade for as far back as I can remember.  Plenty of nudity, bondage, dominant-submissive, leather, etc.  Right down SF's main street.  In other words, it is THE single most liberating/liberated day there is, perhaps anywhere, in the LGBT world. 

And as far back as I can remember, a proud part of the SF Pride Parade were LGBT members of the SF Police Department, in their uniforms, marching in the procession.  Not as law enforcers on duty, but as happy participants in the march, they themselves representing a group that overcame tremendous prejudice.

Cool, right?  No problem, right?  Everyone's happy, right?   Not this year.  And OMG this may be my least favorite part of Wokistan.  I heard both sides on a podcast yesterday by our local paper, The San Francisco Chronicle.  If you have the time, it is worth a listen, if only to hear how absolutely out of their minds both sides are.  Remember, this debate is occurring in SF, easily the most LGBT-friendly city in America, if not anywhere.

See if you can follow this - the two sides are the SF Pride Organization, which conducts the parade each year, and The Pride Alliance, the SF Police Department organization representing LBGT cops.   
OK - be careful - our parade is now entering the most unhinged parts of Wokistan.

SF Pride Organization
They have asked the off-duty LGBT police officers that wish to march as participants in the parade to not wear their uniforms.  Why, you ask?  Because some in the LGBT community have indicated they "won't feel safe" if they see the uniforms.   Especially those that are black - you know because of George Floyd and everything.

In other words, a "safe space" for some of my LGBT friends can not include people in police uniforms.   People in police uniforms who are also non-cisgender.  People in police uniforms that had to overcome real resistance in order to have the privilege of wearing one.   If there is a better definition of "pride" - an LGBT cop marching up Market Street in their uniform to cheering crowds - I don't know what it is.

But nope, we can't have the LGBT cops wearing uniforms:  it makes someone uncomfortable.  Oh, to have been a fly on the wall when the leaders of SF Pride caved to this madness.
The Pride Alliance
How did the LGBT police officers respond, when told they could march as participants, but just not in their uniforms?  They said "we're not marching at all", and SF Mayor London Breed agreed, and said she'd boycott the Pride Parade.  It is unheard of for an SF mayor to do so, BTW.  I completely agree with the LGBT cops and Mayor Breed.  So what's so crazy?

Well, instead of explaining the boycott as most would, with something like "Screw off with your stupid rules - we're just like you and have fought just as hard, and we're marching in our uniforms or we're out." 

No, The Pride Alliance said they were boycotting the parade because:

"They (the SF Pride Organization) are trying to put us back in the closet."

So the group that conducts the whole Pride Parade in the first place is trying to make LGBT cops deny their sexuality?   

See, I told you it was a particularly stupid part of Wokistan.

Frankly, I am fed up with the entire thing.  If one finds SF isn't progressive enough for the non-cisgender, the problem is with the individual, not SF.  The SF Pride Org should shut their mouths and welcome LGBT SF police officers - in their uniforms - and march arm and arm together.  And The Pride Alliance should push back with reality, not old tropes that simply are not in play here. 

They all definitely deserve to walk up Market Street on the weekend of 6/25 - so what is the problem?  Only here, in the darkest corners of Wokistan, could you find one.

Some powerful stuff from Fi and Hunter Deuce, on the Uvalde school shooting.  From Fi:

I can’t stop the tears over this.  I totally agree about Trumps impact and the environment of hatred he has encouraged.  When will this end?

For some reason, I didn't break down over this until Wednesday afternoon - which is when I first saw the photos of the 19 children that are now never coming home.

And from Hunter:

"OK, let's start funding more programs that deal with public mental health."


You can't fucking win.  The United States is not an outlier when it comes to mental health.  

And now I see the Second Amendment crowd is screaming for more armed guards in schools.  There was an armed guard at Parkland.  Didn't stop it.  There was an armed guard in Buffalo.  Didn't stop it.  Police engaged with the Uvalde shooter and he STILL made it into the school and killed 21 people, 19 of them children.  

Armed guards roaming the school halls while classes are on near-lockdown?  (That's not a school).  That's a prison.  You're describing a prison.

More?  Here's a must-read from the editorial board of the The Houston Chronicle - they call out all of insanity in this very directly:

Editorial: Abbott says 'never again' after Uvalde school massacre. Don’t fall for it, Texans.

Thank you to any one that is reading this newsletter. 

I play music in good and bad times.  When it's the latter, I find music can make things a tad less grim.  But what is appropriate?  Here is the quiet but not discouraging "Mixing Colors" by Brian and Roger Eno.


About Dean Clough

Plans To Enjoy Life.