Happy Valley Pride has been lucky enough to partner with all sorts of interesting people over the years. None more so than local artist, Paul MacDonald. Paul has participated in many Happy Valley Pride events over the years and will be a familiar face to many. We caught up with him to find out how this crazy year has been for him and what is on the horizon for him.
As part of LGBT History month 2019, we’re sharing personal stories of significant, life-changing moments of acceptance or understanding from our local LGBT+ community.
“Shall not promote the teaching in any maintained school of the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship”.
Local Government Act, 1988 – Prohibition on promoting homosexuality by teaching or by publishing material.
Put yourself in the place of a 13 year old in the Lake District in 1988. The world was in the midst of the AIDS crisis and homophobic articleswerecommon in the national press.
I wasthe13 year old that Mrs Thatcherwastrying to “protect”. Sadly forherit had the opposite effect.
Gay rightsdidn’t make it to the Lakes,so TV was the only connection to the outside world.Bringing this revolting clause presented a call to arms, organisations like Stonewall appeared and wordsGay and Pride werebandied around. I’d always known I was different but now I wasn’t alone.
It couldn’t have been a better signpost for me, if Margaret T thought homosexuality was wrong, it must be right.
That isn’t to say I had an easy time of it. The 80s were dark and by bringing homophobia to the masses,we all copped it one way or another.
Section 28was only repealed 15 years ago. We need to remember that our previous PrimeMinisterwas incredibly vocal in keepingituntil he did a U-turn in 2009.Our current “leader”has consistently voted against LGBT rights.
As for Section 28, we shouldnever forgetor we willallow prejudice like this to thrive again. As foritseffectiveness, sorry Mrs T, but this gay wasn’t for turning.