Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Love Conquers Hate

Two weekends ago was the Queer Festival here in Seoul. I have never been to a Pride Parade, so I was super excited that I finally was going to go to one.

Korea, as many know, is a very conservative country; a very patriarchal society so it's no surprise. When it comes so gay issues in Korea, everything is hush hush. I've even heard that some Koreans make the claim that "Gays don't exist in Korea". Wow, news flash, they do!

Anyways, going to Pride I knew there'd be protests against it. When I got there, there were a few people with signs. They weren't violent, so I didn't make much of it. There were also a few people protesting because they thought it was inappropriate to have a celebration due to the Sewol accident.

As we made our way through the booths, it was time for the parade. My friends and I wanted a good spot so we went the opposite way towards the end of the route. Ten minutes passed, then twenty, twenty-five ...nothing.

We kept walking following the parade route to see what was going on. We were suddenly back at the beginning of the parade where to our surprise, there were about 200 conservative christian protesters sitting on the street completely blocking the parade! It even got violent. When the parade started, these protesters tried to use physical force to stop it. After this, the police helped the protesters from getting too close.

It really bothered me that these people tried to block us. I 100% believe in freedom of speech, but do not be an ass and block other people's freedom of speech.

Well, in spite of all their hate, we continued dancing and having fun on the streets. These people were not about to bring our spirits down with their nonsense hate.

The parade didn't move for a few hours. When it finally moved, the floats made a u-turn. But to be honest I'm not too sure if the parade actually happened or not; my friends and I left because we were in desperate need of food after all that beer. Don't judge, street drinking is awesome!

I know things won't change any time soon in Korea. I mean, even in the US it's been a slow process. I just hope that they do for the sake of future generations.


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