Monday, 5 October 2020

Mubi Monday: Gay USA (1977)

There has been a lot for people to be active about lately, from the ongoing attempt to remind people that Black Lives Matter, and not just when yet another person is shot by the police, to the celebrities now drawing a line in the sand and picking a stance on transgender issues. A lot of lovely people are supportive and inclusive, some spiral into what we will now refer to as the Linehan Vortex (for no particular reason at all, I just think it is a fitting name for a behaviour that becomes obsessive and shows more about the people spouting their hate than the victims of the nastiness. I mention these things for two reasons. One, a lot of the arguments now being used to defend transphobia are the same ones that were used to defend racism and homophobia over the years, making this documentary a surprisingly relevant viewing experience. Two, if you ever find yourself saying “all lives matter” or “blue lives matter”, or if you are scared in case the gay agenda comes to fruition and we have an entire planet of gay people living a happy life until the population dies out, please just fuck off. 

Seriously. If you are still reading this then I will assume you are a decent person. If not, and you want to sneakily stay here and read my nonsense, know that I don’t care for your readership. I don’t need the traffic. I don’t do this for money. Or any guaranteed audience. It is mainly my own memory aid, and I am pleasantly surprised when others actually click on anything I have written. 

That slight rant aside, Gay USA is a positive rainbow for these dark days, made up of footage taken during numerous “gay pride” marches throughout America (I have those words in quotation marks as I am not sure when they actually became the Gay Pride marches we know of today). 

You get a lot of soundbites that may seem easy to laugh at, either because they are a bit too cool and groovy or because they are so naive, but it is heartening to see how many people are there, being unafraid to celebrate their sexuality or being visible in their stance as a form ally of those seeking equal human rights. There are a few present who are obviously not fully on board with the whole idea, but they are thankfully few and far between. 

Arthur J. Bressan Jr. managed to assemble some great footage from the various mass gatherings of people invested in the campaign for gay rights, and the final product holds up as a celebration of love, in many forms, and the importance of always fighting for what is right. And there's nothing more right than one human having the same value as any other.


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