GAY PRIDE MONTH – Gay themed posts for the month of JUNE

I figure since most countries celebrate Gay Pride during the month of June – I thought I would write gay themed posts.  Today’s post is to pay tribute to individuals who have contributed to gay culture and paved the way for the gay rights movement.  These people are symbols for equality and that have always supported the gay community.  They are my personal favourites – enjoy!

MADONNA – Pop ICON, Queen of Pop, Philanthropist, Movie Star, Director, Fashion Icon, Diva.  Madonna is by far the most celebrated female artist of the 20th century.  She has broken countless chart records and currently holds the title for highest grossing solo touring artist of all-time.  With her current tour just kicking off – will she be able to surpass her last touring effort.  Only time with tell!

LOUISE L. HAY – Writer, humanitarian, business woman and self-help guru.  Louise L. Hay moved to Los Angeles in 1980 and had several gay clients.  She was asked to start a gay men’s support group – she had a few men over for dinner one night – they talked, repeated affirmations and ended with song.  A week later – the group had 90 participants which then snow-balled to 850 every night.  She is currently 85 – and continues to share her message of love and positivity.  She tours across the country to promote wellness for the body, mind, soul and spirit – watch for the I CAN DO IT tour coming to a city near you throughout the year.

JIMMY SOMMERVILLE – In the early 80’s, Jimmy Sommerville belonged to a band called Bronski Beat.  They released 2 songs that were huge hits in the early 80’s – Why and Small Town Boy.  As a teen during this time – I was amazed how this song was received, after all it was a ‘coming out’ story about a bullied gay male?  Who knew it would be such a big hit and now classic gay anthem!  Jimmy also was in the band called The Communards – they were responsible for the remake of Thelma Houston’s disco classic “Don’t Leave Me This Way”.  Thanks Jimmy for being true to who you are!  Jimmy continues to create great music as a solo artist.

ELTON JOHN – Yes, he is a bit of a diva but you can’t deny that Elton, along with his writing partner – Bernie Taupin have created the most memorable pop tunes in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s.  After coming out publicly and later marrying David Furnish – Elton has remained a pop icon for more than 4 decades.  One of my favourite Elton songs (of many) is from the cd The One – the song is called ‘The Last Song’ – this came out during the AIDS epidemic and had a rather touching and compelling video.  Along with his classic hits – Elton was pivotal in raising money for AIDS charities.  Elton was a guest and sang at Matthew Sheppard’s funeral.

MARGARET CHO – Margaret is a stand-up comic (one of my all time favourites) and had a ground-breaking and controversial television show, All-American Girl.  The show was short-lived and Margaret decided to give it her all on her one-woman show, I’m The One That I Want.  The show was a hit which became a best-selling book and feature film.  Margaret has always supported the LGBT community and has been nominated for 2 Grammy Awards and honoured by GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation).  She has since had several sold-out tours – Notorious C.H.O. and Revolution.  She is currently seen in the comedy/drama – Drop Dead Diva.  She is also embarking on a new tour called Margaret Cho’s Mother Tour.

There are so many more celebrities in the public eye that have a direct link in helping me accept my homosexuality – past and present.  They were detrimental in helping me become comfortable in my own skin and provided the soundtrack to my life.  Their movies, music or words allowed me confront my own homophobia and shaped me in becoming the man I am today, they are:  Boy George, George Michael, Depeche Mode, Alison Moyet, Grace Jones, John Waters, Ian McKellan, Rupert Everett, Greg Louganis, Tom Ford, Roseanne Barr, Judith Light, Dan Savage, Bill Maher, Peaches, Billie Ray Martin, OMD, New Order, The Cure, EllenDegeneres, Alan Cumming, Wanda Sykes, Divine, Rupaul, Rachel Madow, Rosie O’Donnell, Alan Ball, Lily Tomlin and Melissa Etheridge, Lady Ga Ga, just to name a few.

I am thankful and grateful that there are people in the world spreading their support for equality no matter what gender you are, sexual orientation, religious denomination, political party and ethnicity.  I also want to thank those in my immediate circle (friends and family) who have stood by me and have given me their unconditional love when I didn’t know if I had the strength in me to survive.  I am here because of all of you and all of your love – I hope that that love and positive energy has found it’s way back to you!


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