I have been reading a lot of posts and hearing a lot of comments throughout this Pagan Pride season. Many of these comments were surprisingly negative. Even from people that I have come to love and respect throughout my years in the Pagan community who are usually are full of positive love and energy.
I have heard comments that Pagan Pride brings out people that are friendly for that one day of the year in the public and spend the rest of the time backstabbing and squabbling. I have heard some say that it allows predators in the community the opportunity to find the unsuspecting newbies that are out seeking places to circle and gather and seeking teachers. All of that may be true. After all, Pagans are human and our community has the same problems and issues of any group of human beings.
So, does this mean that Pagan Pride Days have changed over time? Or does it just mean that there are more people turning out so we are getting more of the bad with the good?
Let me tell you what I see when I attend a Pagan Pride event. I see people working hard to put the event on. I see entertainers singing and dancing and playing their hearts out on stage to reach their audience. I see authors that have worked hard to write and publish books available to talk to and ask questions of. I see artisans working hard to show off the products of their creativity. I see businesses owned by Pagans working hard to sell their wares so they can keep doing what they love. I see healers and readers healing and giving insight to people that stop by their table, booth or room. I see local groups with informational tables available to answer questions. I see people shopping all of these tables and booths.
What I see the most is opportunity. Opportunity to put aside issues and work together for the day. Opportunity to do something that might be the first step in building that bridge between opposing sides. Opportunity to show the world that we are proud to be Pagan and are not hiding our faith.
I am not saying that I cannot see some of the negative garbage happening. I see people at these events that I would rather not see at all. We all do. We can’t all see eye to eye and like each other. I just choose to focus on meeting all the new and interesting people, seeing all the wonderful art, hearing all the beautiful music and seeing all the friends I don’t get to see often.
So here is my thought for the day for all of you good people that have thrown up your hands and don’t attend Pagan Pride because of the negative stuff you have seen or the people you don’t want to run into. If all of the people that refuse to be a part of creating and perpetuating drama and all of the good teachers that are not preying on naïve seekers avoid Pagan Pride Days, doesn’t that just perpetuate the problems? Doesn’t that leave the naïve newbies to fend for themselves against the predators? Doesn’t that leave the drama creators in charge?
Be a part of the solution!
This is one Pagan who will continue to attend and support the effort of Pagan Pride Days and look to see the rest of you good folk there. Our community is only strong if we all work together to support it.
Thank you to all the good people that turn out on all of the Pagan Pride Days and support being proud to be Pagan. Thank you to all of the good people that spend their time and energy putting the Pagan Pride Days together.