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Last weekend I watched 10 people come unraveled as they put on the statewide Pride. It really bothered me that in a state with thousands of LGBT people, only 10 were willing to put forth the money and the effort to make it happen.
These Pride events have caused change to happen. Six years ago, the streets of the march and festival were lined with hate-filled, aggressive protestors. That slowly decreased until this year there were none.
On the seven-hour drive home, I thought a lot about the attitudes of not caring in the LGBT community in Michigan. Last night I started a letter to the editor of BTL, suggesting that if people care so little that they can’t help out or at least donate money – then the organization just needs to be dissolved and let the statewide Pride (a joining of all the LGBT communities from around the state) die a painful and permanent death. But there are those on the new board who said “No!”, who still have the drive and determination to make a difference; to create change for the betterment of the lives of all in the LGBT Community. The least the people in the community could do is support them by joining the board or committee, by purchasing a paid membership, or simply by making a donation.
Every year I pay for a membership because I believe in the good this group can accomplish. Sadly, in the last few years there has only been one other paid membership. Which means there are only two people who give a damn about improving the lives of our people. This greatly saddens me. If every LGBT person in the state donated 50 cents (less than a cup of coffee), then the events could be put on without cutting corners, pinching pennies and begging for money from outsiders.
Last year, I fought hard and prevented the cancellation of the Pride and dissolution of the group. This year, I was ready to throw in the towel but someone else fought to keep it alive. The question is, will there be someone to say no next year? Or will a statewide Pride become a forgotten memory in history? It has always been for the people – now it’s up to the people to show by their actions whether they want it to live on or die.