I went to the Gay Pride Parade yesterday and was deeply moved by seeing parents with their young children in tow at the event. I felt the energy of freedom and acceptance at the event. Certainly there plenty of outlandish costumes that showed more ass than a donkey conga line.
But what touched me the most was to realize the experience these young children are getting. I was reminded of those disturbing scenes of young children at Ku Klux Klan rallies with their tiny little hoods on drinking in the toxic hatred of racism. I thought of how the divisive, destructive energy that the group feeds on to keep their core values alive and how the parents are force feeding that hatred into their children.
I found myself nearly in tears thinking that these kids are getting an early experience in to the world of tolerance and acceptance. I’m convinced that any contact kids have with that influence shapes them in a meaningful way. And I'd like to think that the children are more likely to be influenced by the love of the parade vs. the hate of the Klan but I honestly don't know.
It also reminded me of the amazing work that Jane Elliott did in the 1960’s with the blue eyed brown eyed experiment with kids. I vividly remember the video of the adults who were kids as part of that experiment. They were as Midwest as they come and they were filled with an accepting love, compassion and devotion that was totally inspiring.
God bless the parents who brought their kids down to the parade.