I wish I could have joined the QueerZaadi March at Chowpatty this saturday. After India's Union Health Minister Ambumani Ramadoss pushed for the scrapping of the draconian Section 377 of the IPC, it has given the Gay community in India a tremendous boost. Such a show of solidarity (the slated march) would not have been possible even two years ago, when Gays in the city were faced with constant threats, especially from corrupt cops who never failed to remind them of the law. Vulnerable and defenceless, Gays were reduced to either suppressing their inclinations or going about their lives in a clandestine manner, wracked with fear and guilt. My only regretabout the planned march is the use of the word 'Queer' since it has inbuilt implications. It suggests that Gays are odd, peculiar, bent or somehow not 'normal'. If the organisers of the march had thought about this aspect, perhaps they might have called it something else.
I also hate columnists\journos who write pro-Gay pieces captioned 'Some of my best friends are gay." It is akin to saying "Some of my best friends are dogs." It reeks of condescension and a patronising attitude, even if the intentions are wonderful. Why single out Gays for such special treatment? Do we also say, " Some of my best friends are Dalit\Muslim\Hindus"? Or has the time come to declare ones position in such a brazen way? If so, how awful. Well.... here's wishing all the very best to the March for Sexual Freedoms on Saturday .