Less than two days after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo legalized gay marriage, New Yorkers took to the streets to celebrate the annual gay pride parade in New York City’s Greenwich Village. Because history was in the making, this year’s celebration was unmatched from previous years in genuine pride, hope and good will.
Although we captured a lot of clowning around (see Blue Man at right) there was a unmistakable feeling of hope for younger gay men and women. Marriage, children and an integrated work and family life seems to be a right that is attainable for everyone who wants it.
Coming of age during the AIDS crisis, my experience could not have been more different. As a New York City gay man in my twenties, I was told by many it would only be a matter of time before I contracted AIDS, and I would be lucky to see my mid thirties. Fortunately those days are over, and young people are faced with hope and possibilities instead of looming death and chronic anxiety.
Jan-Kristof, 24, a student teacher at Brooklyn College, and his former student, 19-year-old Raynieo Estrella, epitomize the new gay wave for me. Their candid comments in the video are heroic, yet so basic. They want to marry someone they love, have a family, work hard.
How could anyone of sane mind deny them, or anyone, this very basic human right?
Can’t see it on Vimeo? Watch it on YouTube.