Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Pagan Pride

First, let me say that I'm very mindful of the issues surrounding the word "Pagan". Let me also say, that for me, it is a useful descriptor (one among many) that helps me understand who I am and how I move through the world in relation to other people.

OK, that said, I'm wondering what folks here think of Pagan Pride events.

As most of you know, I have always worked in the area of social justice, and I very recently started a job as the policy director of a national social justice/education organization. This organization deals directly with a group that has been marginalized by society, and is definitely "the outsiders."

I attended an annual event this past weekend, during which I found myself substituting "religious bias" in my head, every time someone talked about any other kind of bias (e.g., gender, race, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, etc.). And the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I have the right to be who I am, wherever I am. Period.

Yeah, I know: Duh.

Anyway, I came home very energized on a personal level as well as a professional level. I'm interested in working on religious rights -- and I have the skills to really make a difference. I'm a professional advocate, lobbyist, advocacy trainer, and lawyer.

Nevertheless, I have some concerns about the way the "Pagan Community" approaches the issue (please notice the quote marks -- I don't want to revisit the issue of whether there IS a pagan community -- for these purposes, I believe there is perceived to be one). Even so, I think I'm going to volunteer to help out with DC's annnual Pagan Pride Day. At the very least, I'll get a closer look.

Thoughts? Comments? Advice? Warnings? Encouragements?

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