Gaymunye – we are one…

It is not our differences that divide us, it is, instead, our inability to accept, recognise and celebrate those differences. 

Excuse my ignorance, but I was not aware what Priscilla – Queen of the Desert was about. Not that it would have affected whether I would go see it or not. I honestly thought it was just a musical with no real story-line.

So, Saturday night, when we arrived at Monte Casino to watch Priscilla, imagine my absolute surprise (and consequent ecstatic-ism – that is officially a word) when I saw cross-dressers galore.

These ladies wore heels that I would never be able to stand in, let alone parade elegantly in down Monte Casino’s cobblestones.

So, there we were, experiencing a community of LGBT in the heart of Fourways, Johannesburg, realising that there is such a large movement that we were not aware of. Some more ignorance on my part? Or maybe it just doesn’t matter to me as much that there are so many different people, with so many different ways of life and manners of loving and expressions of self.

There is a scene in Priscilla where, after a night out on the town, the ladies return to the caravan where hate slurs targeted at gay people were spray-painted. There was deafening silence in the audience and in the row in front of me one of the ladies / cross-dressers started to cry: uncontrollably and inconsolably. In that moment it hit me and I felt the hurt deep, deep, deep in my heart: there is so much hatred out there, so much judgment and so little tolerance for people that are not according to our definition of “normal”.

The song that was sung during that scene was “True Colours”, and it will never sound the same to me again:

“You with the sad eyes don’t be discouraged,
oh I realize It’s hard to take courage,
In a world full of people you can lose sight of it all
The darkness inside you can make you feel so small
Show me a smile then, don’t be unhappy
Can’t remember when I last saw you laughing
This world makes you crazy and you’ve taken all you can bear
Just, call me up ’cause I will always be there
And I see your true colors shining through,
I see your true colors and that’s why I love you
So don’t be afraid to let them show your true colors, true colors are beautiful
I see your true colors shining through,
I see your true colors and that’s why I love you
So don’t be afraid to let them show your true colors, true colors are beautiful like a rainbow.”

I think the world needs less of “us and them” and more of “us all”.

We are all people. We all love and want to be loved. We have our quirks, our issues, our tendencies and habits that could annoy another person. I have aspects about myself that I am shy about or don’t necessarily want to hang out in the open for everyone to criticize or have an opinion about. We all have our true colours that we may not always find as beautiful or may seem a bit messy, faded or mixed.

Whatever your religion’s stance may be of what is right and wrong or whatever opinion you may have about what is okay and what is not, remember that it is our responsibility as human-beings to have at least an ounce of humanity, and to love and accept even if we don’t understand or agree.

Let’s live and let live.

And remember what your mom taught you: if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say it at all…




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